Swedish-Japanese singer-songwriter Maia Hirasawa has just released her first ever album in Swedish, Vacker och ful. But her international fans need not worry, she’s not abandoning English or Japanese.
Maia Hirasawa tells Swedish was actually the first language she started writing songs in at age 22. But when she learned to play the guitar, the songs started coming in English. She released her first album Though, I’m Just Me in 2007 and was awarded Newcomer of the Year in 2008. The same year she had a big breakthrough with the larger Swedish crowd when she covered The Ark’s The Worrying Kind at Melodifestivalen.
For quite a while Maia has also had a parallel career in Japan – she’s actually been Big in Japan since 2011, bigger than in Sweden that is. Maia did an EP in Swedish before her Japanese career really took off and she’s been wanting to do something in Swedish, but always felt there was no time. Now she finally decided that this is as good a time as any. But the fact of the matter is, the new Swedish songs have also been released in Japan on an album in English, Japanese and Swedish.
We saw Maia and the band play some of the new songs for the first time in Sweden at Musikplats Stockholm, which is Radio P4 Stockholm’s weekly show with lunch concerts on Fridays at the Radio House. The songs sounded fresh and the language really seems to make a difference.
Be sure to catch Maia on her Swedish tour dates this October and November. In Stockholm you can see her at Södra Teatern on 20th November
Have a listen to Maia Hirasawa’s new album: