Interview: Amalie Bryde Says What It Is In Detail

‘Say what it is’, ‘Lay Down’, ‘You and Me’ the list is becoming endless for the menu of exciting works singer Amalie Bryde has to offer.

When we were recommended to listen to Amalie Bryde we did our research and knew we had stumbled upon a masterful artist with an extraordinary portfolio to match. It wasn’t long until her music was on repeat with the next song as brilliant as the last.

Having recently unveiled a torrent of music, performances and insider videos, Amalie Bryde is becoming a goldmine of music that never dissapoints.

You have some phenomenal work in your music gallery and your latest – ‘Say what it is’ has incredible visuals. Can you tell us more about the song and video?

Thank you so much! ‘Say What It Is’ (SWII) is incredibly personal since it was a big chapter in my life. In SWII I’m asking a former partner what to do and what he wants from me in order to stay together. When I sing “you’re holding on but cannot forgive”, it’s because he didn’t want to let me go either. I wanted him to let things out so that we could move on. Little did I know that I was starting to dissolve, as I began to give into the fear of losing him and never finding happiness again.

It’s very romantic wanting someone so desperately, that you think you’d never be happy without them. But is it? That’s what I asked myself when making the video. My cry for love was actually a cry for help. 

The video starts with me as my normal self but as the camera approaches something begins to change. You get (a look) into my head as I start to melt into a pool of my own tears. I start to lose sight of myself because I’m trying to be who I think he wants me to be. At the end of the video, I’m all alone mirroring the ending of the relationship. I just needed to learn to love myself. I first wrote this song back in 2016, but only finished it with Glen Scott in 2019 after a devastating breakup. The week leading up to the release was emotional, but such a relief! I’ll never regret that relationship because it made me who I am today. But, I know whenever I perform SWII in the future, a tear will always trickle down my cheek just like when I recorded it in the studio with Glen. I think that’s what makes the song so powerful. You can feel the emotion I bring to the recording and writing.

When was the moment you felt music was a medium made for you? Can you remember what it was you were doing/listening to?

Singing and performing has always been a part of who I am. I might have to thank my mom for bringing dancing and Michael Jackson into my life and also going to a primary school where music was an integral element. Ever since I could talk, I would perform on the coffee table or on the stage we had in school. I watched ‘Boogie’ (DK’s version of MTV) in my parents’ bed mimicking ‘Shakira – Whenever, Wherever’. I think back to me watching Eurovision when I was little, and my dad asked “how do you know this song?” and I’d reply “I don’t”. From a very early age, I just figured out how melodies work and would sing them back. I’ve always dreamt about being on big stages performing and dancing.

At the age of 9, I started going to a music school after school where I joined musicals, choirs and bands. But, I was not old enough to have a solo in the choir. So, I had to elbow my way into getting one. I recall finally getting one and I received so many compliments that I ended up having solos at every show we had from then on. That was the moment I realized that this was something I was good at – singing and performing. I learned how to connect with the audience on stage. Even after that, I had to fight my way to get private singing lessons and bigger musical parts because I was too young. It was frustrating for my parents too. Coming from a small city there just wasn’t really any other option.

You moved from (Copenhagen) Denmark to London a few years back, what prompted the move?

That SWII breakup is actually what prompted me. Two weeks later I was out of Copenhagen. I threw caution to the wind and left with nothing but my microphone and computer to a small single room in Newington Green. I had been meaning to go to London for years, but I never had the courage. Subconsciously, I knew moving to London wasn’t going to “fix” all my problems. It was a weird cocktail of believing in myself while simultaneously not knowing what my next steps were going to be. Not to mention what the right path was for me musically and stylistically.

In the end, I moved because I felt lonely with my art in Denmark. I didn’t work with anyone, I didn’t have musician friends I could just jam with and have fun exploring genres like Jazz and Neo-Soul. In Denmark, no one was there to help me because it’s a very “every man for themselves” mentality. The music scene in the UK is massive, yet – the very first open mic I went to – I was met with open arms and a helping hand. I want to be able to go and listen to live music daily, perform weekly and meet my peers. I want to be a part of the artist community and not just pretend to be an artist on my own.

In London I’ve become one with the process.

How does the UK music scene differ from Denmark?

The UK  music scene is more suitable for up-and-coming artists. I didn’t even realize that until I moved here. In London I get invited to perform at showcasing events. The more I get to perform, the more invitations I receive. In Denmark, I’d sometimes have to hire a place to perform. Copenhagen is amazing if you have a label, but it’s tough as an independent. Believe it or not it’s hard to get a foot in the door in the Danish music scene, which is another reason why I moved. It can be very draining. People in London are more open to go to concerts where they don’t know the artists. It’s all about discovering new music.

What song is most personal to you and why?

My two releases ‘Say What It Is’ and ‘Colours’. I wrote both from a very personal perspective and they really describe how I feel. Both speak to my experience of learning that communication really is the foundation of a strong relationship. ‘Colours’ in particular is about me trying to encourage a partner to embrace their entire personality, not just what they think I want to hear.  I’m very proud of the writing. I think lyrically, they’re two strong yet vulnerable pieces kind of like the way, Minnie Riperton’s voice sounds on “Loving You”.

Do non-music activities help you with your projects?

Most certainly. Actually, ‘Remote Control’ is inspired by a chapter in the book “Infinite Jest” about how society often just sits back and absent-mindedly switches between channels. About how we’re never happy or content, because of the sheer amount of information we’re fed every day, making us lazy and complacent. When I’m not surfing Netflix, I’m inspired by reading, having conversations with friends, podcasts and journaling. Sometimes even scrolling through social media or Pinterest to just feel the pulse of the 21st century.

How do you think you’ve evolved from your earlier work and is it something you’ve noticed with each release?

We tend to evaluate ourselves as finished products, but actually, we are constantly a work in progress. Each release is a new way for me to express myself. One of the best things about life is that it never stops teaching. How exciting is that!

I’ve grownfrom working with peers, meeting exciting new people in London who’ve workedhard to be where they are, by throwing myself in the deep end, through trialand error and by believing in myself. But most importantly by letting go!Letting go of fears and rejections. Letting go of “maybe not being good enough”when you’re in a recording session with someone you look up to and admire.

We are afraid to mess up, I’m definitely a victim of that sometimes. I’ll go back and listen to my very first production demos and writings and I can’t help but laugh and reminisce. I thought I was good back then, but it’s nothing compared to what I can make today. I’ve learned so much without even realizing!

Working with other producers and writers while looking over their shoulder is a great tip. I always ask questions when I’m in the studio working with someone. Working with Glen was a massive step-up for me, both as an artist and singer. He taught me to channel the very essence of my soul into my performances, to let go and trust myself!

Are you able to tell us about any upcoming releases or will we have to wait and see? 

I’m very excited to announce that my Debut EP is coming out in 2 months! It’s a bold one. I want people to experience the same catharsis I went through while I was recording and producing this EP. The theme is around different situations in my life where I felt the need to lay down.

I just finished filming the music video for my next single that’s coming out in April. I bought a green screen so I could shoot it at home. I actually just got back from returning the styles I’d borrowed from the Crossover London Showroom and various designers. I styled, choreographed and shot this video at home all by myself. Bence Borbely is going to design and edit it. I honestly can’t wait to share this one! It might sound easy and straightforward, but this was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. I shot 3 looks over the course of 3 days. Bence and I had planned the frames and what I had to do for each and every second in the song. The amount of times I had to redo a take…because I had to start recording, play the music, put on elbow-length gloves only to then realize I’d either missed the cue or that I wasn’t in focus. Most frustratingly was when I realized I shot a whole look with one of my boobs hanging out! I’ve been crosseyed for days because I cued the music on my iPhone using my nose. Can’t wait to share the behind the scenes footage on my Instagram and YouTube channel. Going to be hilarious!

What do you find most important about your personal and work life and do you try to separate the two or allow them to co-exist?

Oh my… I’m not going to lie, it’s hard. It’s so hard. I’m balancing between three mindsets and there’s a fine line between them: Amalie the Business Woman, Amalie Bryde the Artist and Me, Amalie. I work on my brand 24/7. I also work as a voice actor and translator to bring in some money to pay the bills. I never have a day off because my mind is always onto the next thing. I have e-mails to respond to, videos and releases to arrange if I’m not filming and recording.

So yeah,it’s definitely difficult sometimes because I don’t have anyone to consult with.It’s about keeping a clear mindset so that when I work on the business side ofthings, I don’t take it personal when reading the rejections and the feedbackI get back. Before meeting Bence, I was all alone with my ideas and thoughts.It’s honestly been a miracle since we met shooting the video for SWII. He’s nowa really good friend of mine that I can share my ideas with, vent to and whocan execute them to perfection, with his personal touch. He’s now my visualdesigner, and I can’t wait to add more people to the team!  

What song did you last listen to?

Gianni Brezzo, J.Lamotta – Beirut. It’s beautiful.

Amalie Bryde’s new single ‘No’ is available to pre-save now on all major platforms and is available to stream April 9th.

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