Video Feature & Web-Exclusive Interview


Musician:  SOFI VONN


Video:  “what u started








London-based New York-born electronic pop singer-songwriter Sofi Vonn premieres new single “what u started.” It follows the success of recently released singles “Ghost” and “Best I Can,” as well as the success of her December 2021 debut EP That Was a Close Call.

Vonn’s introspective lyrics dig deep, while her light melodies create a set of contradictions that somehow fit together perfectly to tell a relatable narrative of youth. With her unique voice, she deftly expresses emotions and opinions on society, love, sexuality and other universal topics.

Sofi Vonn writes with the insight gained through years of introspective searching, while combining it with music that moves—hoping others can learn from the path she has traveled.

Vonn says “I love this track because of its house-y foundation and tropical synth sounds. Like “Next To Me” released last fall, I wrote and produced the song first and then finished it with Ari Blitz and Arturo Kahan in Los Angeles. Lyrically, it’s a warning to people who may have bad intentions to be careful because you know what that looks like already—and you won’t tolerate it. We had a lot of fun with it and I’m excited it’ll be released in time for summer—as it’s definitely a beach vibe.”

Vonn writes all of her own material. A vibrant storyteller, her depth of feeling and love for her craft is evident in every track. Her warm and powerful voice is the perfect means for conveying her lyrics, which are at once introspective yet universal. She found an especially powerful ally when she met renowned music executive Charlie Walk (who helped launch the careers of Lorde, Ariana Grande and The Weeknd).

We talked with Sofi Vonn about her musical journey so far, her approach to creating introspective music and how writing about her experiences are like therapy—that she hopes others can learn from.


SOFI VONN Interview
with M Music & Musicians magazine publisher, Merlin David


What did you learn about yourself after recording your debut EP That Was a Close Call?
I learned that I am quite insightful in my own thoughts, and that writing about my experiences is like therapy to me—because it allows me to admit things to myself and share that with others who may feel the same way, while growing emotionally myself.

Which song somehow squeaked by and made it onto that first collection?
“Anxiety”—because that one holds the most meaning and is very relatable.

Sofi Vonn writes with the insight gained through years of introspective searching, while combining it with music that moves—hoping others can learn from the path she has traveled.

Tell us how the idea of “what u started” came to you.
I initially produced this song for one of my classes at Goldsmiths [University of London]. I found these beachy sound samples and then wrote a melody to the music. I had written the “didn’t your mama tell you life’s not fair” line, as a joke! After a year of calling it “the mama song” we decided to keep the lyrics but change the name of the song. I like that it’s less serious than my other songs, which are lyrically quite deep.

Is this song, along with “Ghost” and “Best I Can” part of your next EP/album?
I’m not sure yet. These songs are still from last fall’s collection. I think I may keep these as singles. I just recorded a bunch of new music in LA last month—which I feel is a newer sound and am considering making that a new EP. We shall see.

What’s the most difficult part about writing from personal experiences?
Trying to understand how I feel—how I want to be portrayed and what I want people to take from the song. If it’s a huge insecurity of mine, I like to keep it simpler and use more implications rather than being literal—just so it doesn’t become way too deep and can relate to more similar emotions rather than situations.

How did DJing influence the way you write music?
DJing has definitely affected my production process in terms of arrangement and sounds, since I play house and techno. I tend to always produce more upbeat dance tracks (hence “Next To Me” and “what u started”).

How has studying sound engineering influenced your music?
I wouldn’t say sound engineering influences much. Though, it helps me with recording methods.

Who originally inspired you to write songs?
I don’t know if there are specific songwriters or songs which inspired me to write. I was always weirdly good at writing poems in school and recall just liking poetry in general. I also always knew I had music in me but didn’t realize that the poems would turn into songwriting.

What songwriting tip would you like to offer?
Always record an idea that pops into your head. I have so many files I listen to when I don’t know what to write or produce. I get inspired, and often surprised, with my ideas. It’s hard to think on the spot, if you’re not in a creative flow. I prefer to produce / have a track first—and then write a melody to that on my midi keyboard—testing different sounds. That’s how I wrote the melody for “is it a crime?” and “Next To Me.”

What instruments/equipment can you not live without?
For writing, I love the Akai Professional MPK midi keyboard. To perform, I’ve been using an Ableton Push, which is really fun as well.

Which Top 5 Musicians inspired you to become a musician?
When I was younger I listened to artists like Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Ed Sheeran and Maroon 5. Nobody specific made me want to become a musician. It was the feeling I got watching any performance and once I realized I should actually pursue this career. It took a long time of trying to do other things with my life but not enjoying them fully. I also really enjoy writing about personal stuff because it gives me closure and makes me feel like I have conquered whatever feelings or situations I was in.

What are your Top 5 favorite albums of all time?
808s & Heartbreak (2008) — Kanye
Modern Bliss (2020) — Roza Terenzi
Dawn FM (2022) — The Weeknd
Assume Form (2019) — James Blake
La vita nuova (2020) — Christine and the Queens

Tell us a “pinch me” moment when you thought “Wow, this is really happening to me!
My last headline London show at The Slaughtered Lamb—where I had a moment afterwards. I was like, “damn, this place had posters of me up everywhere! I had the most people come through, and did my most crowd engaging performance yet.” In that moment I felt a bit emotional—realizing the progress I had made. I am sure I’ll have many more pinch me moments.

In this unique socio-political climate, how do you remain hopeful?
Through music and remembering what good things are in this world and in life—and by watching videos of people being selfless. Golden buzzer videos are a good way to lighten a mood.

What is the best advice someone has given you?
My current mentor/friend Charlie Walk said that nobody will give a damn about you unless you make them give a damn—and that somebody’s gotta believe essentially. If you don’t believe in yourself nobody will. You can achieve your dreams if you work hard—no matter how many years it will take.

Best advice you’d like to give your teenage self?
I wish I’d started earlier and listened to my gut all along.

Where can new fans get more info and stay updated?
YouTube Channel:

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