An Interview With Musician/Lifestyle Model Extraordinarie, Alex Alexander!
Posted On 30 Jul 2014
Tag: Alex Alexander, Beat It, Bon Jovi, Bruno Mars, Carl Falk, Iron Maiden, Justin Timberlake, Labrinth, Living On A Prayer, Max Martin, Metallica, Michael Jackson, One Direction, Pink, Prince, Rami Yacoub, Sanya, She's A Dynamite, Simon Cowell, Sweden, Syco Entertainment, Van Halen, Volvo Ocean Race, Whitney Houston, Yngwie Malmsteen
Alex Alexander is a Swedish recording artist that has professionally played all over Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. What makes Alex Alexander a good LIVE act, is his energy and presence on stage. Not only is he a musician, he is also a successful lifestyle model.
Alex will be releasing his debut single ”She’s A Dynamite” sometime later this summer and he has already managed to earn great attention and awards from the industry, for his songwriting and producing skills. He has written songs for some of the market’s biggest superstars, especially currently in Asia.
Alex has been very busy lately! He recently won two international record label songwriting competitions based in the UK, has modeled international billboard ads, appeared in several music videos, completed and produced his own music tracks and he has been scouted to write for an American producer and fellow musician.
Fortunately, Alex managed to squeeze in some time to answer a few questions for me about his career so far.
When was the first moment that you realized that you wanted to be a performer?
I was rocking air guitar to Metallica and Iron Maiden [like a maniac] during my younger years, so to me, it was just obvious that I needed to pick up the guitar and start playing. And so my journey began. I remember when I was twelve and everyone was out playing during summer, but I sat in my room like a nerd practicing alternate picking. I was playing Yngwie Malmsteen licks for hours (haha), and I knew one day I was going to be doing the same as all the stars I saw.
Both my sister and brother are in the entertainment industry so the step for me to begin a professional career wasn’t that huge. My brother had to take all the hard stuff from our parents wondering why he didn’t want to be a doctor instead of a circus artist but now he’s very successful in Sweden! My parents pretty much reacted to my rock star dreams with ‘yeah of course you should do that.’ They have been extremely supportive of my crazy ventures!
How have you grown as a musician since you started?
I think in the beginning of my career, it was all about technical stuff; who could play the fastest, who could sing the highest notes. Now, it’s more about the importance of feeling, heart and soul, in what you do. I’ve learned it’s how you deliver the music and your performance. LESS IS MORE!
For years now, its been imprinted in my head that every time I perform, it doesn’t matter if there’s 10 or 10,000 thousand people in the audience. I will always give my all! From my experience, people love that energy. The worst thing to see is a passive band – just standing around like mannequins. I could never do that.
Congrats on all the songwriting awards! Now, what is your approach to songwriting? How do you capture the inspiration when it comes to you?
Thank you very much! It’s really an awesome feeling when you get recognition that the music you’re creating is appealing!
It’s all very random for me, but I prefer to make songs very fast, because honestly the ‘first’ lyrics and ideas you make, are almost always the best! I also listen to what’s out there for the moment: The “top lists” on Spotify and iTunes to see if I can get inspiration there. But right now, I tend to go back in time because I love the old Motown & soul era. You can really get some tasty references from those riffs, beats, chord, progressions. I listen to a lot of Max Martin productions because I love his style of producing and writing!
How exactly is the modeling world different then the music world? Have you been able to take things you learned in one industry to the next? Which industry is your true calling? What makes you the happiest?
I would say there is a huge difference between the industries even though they’re built up similar with agents and management, etc. In modeling, if you’re blessed with amazing looks and features, that can pretty much make your career.
In the music business, its all about developing a strong package. It doesn’t matter if you’re Whitney Houston on vocals, you still need to have the whole thing: good songs, branding, and a clear idea of what you want to do with your career. My main thing in life has always been music. Modeling is more of a fun on the side that happen to turn professional!
How is the music scene different in the US from your home in Sweden?
What I love about the US is that everyone is still allowed to dream big and have wild fantasies of how you want your career to go. In Sweden, people tend to chicken out with the mind set of “nah we can’t do that…and nah, that’s probably never gonna work.” Literally all of the Swedish artists, have the dream to venture over to the US market.
I’m thinking I will start in the US and then conquer Sweden! (haha) 🙂
How are you using social media networks and sites such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram to interact with your fans? What do you think about it all?
Oh my god! I am a social media addict! It truly is the key to grow as an artist or brand. In these days, and our generation, we should be really happy that we can do “so much” by ourselves. The awesome thing is that you can reach the whole world, and it’s only your dedication that sets the limit. I’ve heard of many artists that are independent, but manage to book full houses on tour just from Twitter fans- and I think that’s awesome!
If you had the opportunity to work with any artist/band from the past, present or future, who would it be and why?
Oh I would say Michael Jackson! I always wished I could have played guitar on a tour with him, and have co-writing sessions. That would have been epic! He’s definitely the King of Pop!
It would also be awesome to get the chance to work with Justin Timberlake sometime in my career. I love that he is bringing back more of the old soul and motown sound to the R&B/Pop genre. There have been too many songs about money & bitches in the genre and it’s kind of lost its original meaning.
Someday hopefully, I also wish to write some songs with Max Martin!
Why is this lifestyle (recording, singing, traveling) one that you’re both willing to follow now?
I have been working as a musician since I was 19 years old, so I always had to travel for work. I don’t even think about it. You need to go where ever you need to be. If you need me in London, I’ll be there. If you need me in Tokyo the day after, fine. I’ll be there. I also just love to travel and I’m very interested in different cultures and countries, so I see it all as a bonus, which comes with the work.
What is your favorite song to perform live and why? What is your favorite song to cover?
Oh man, haha, this is a hard question! I think one of my favorites is ”Beat it’‘ by Michael Jackson because you get to shred Van Halen’s crazy tapping solo. I also have to say ”Living On A Prayer” with Bon Jovi. I think I played this song three million times, but I still love it! (I actually wish I wrote it!)
When you aren’t performing and writing new material, what do you like to do in your spare time?
To be honest I live in the studio, so there isn’t much spare time. (LOL) This is a 24/7 [non-stop] dream machine for me and I will never stop!
On a side note, I love to workout in the gym. I’m a certified personal trainer.
What bands are currently inspiring the music that you’re making? Who are some new bands that you are loving?
One of my favorites is a guy called Labrinth from the UK, he is signed to Simon Cowell’s label, Syco Entertainment. I can really refer to his way of working. He produces and writes pretty much everything himself. I tend to listen a lot also to One Direction. I really think they have great songs and their productions are absolutely flawless. I’m a huge fan of the Swedish producers and songwriters Rami Yacoub and Carl Falk who produce almost all of their hits. I’m also in a Prince phase now too. I’m hooked! 🙂
Thus far, what’s a favorite memory or something silly that’s taken place (in-studio, onstage, or elsewhere)?
Me and my sister (a professional singer), played a gig in the Chinese south city, Sanya during the Volvo Ocean Race (huge sailing competition). We got a gig to play in the Puma stand and we were basically just supposed to be like a lounge duo, playing some chill music, but in the end we were standing there with around 300 Chinese kids screaming their asses off! After every song, they wanted to buy our album! We tried to explain that it was all covers like Bruno Mars, Pink and more! [haha] It was a really fun situation. I wish I had my own single right there to sell!!! I have a lot more crazy memories from my two 2 year tour around Asia, but I think most of them are rated PG, so another time for that! LOL 🙂
Is there anything in particular that you’d like people to take away from listening to your music?
Only one thing: this was F****** awesome (haha)!
My main goal will always be to entertain people. I want people who enjoy my music to be mind blown. Whenever they come and see me live, I want to give them an experience that when its finished, they walk out with a smile on their face, and a ‘wow, that was a really fun and awesome experience,’ feeling. Without fans, we artists are nothing!
I also hope and would like fans to feel generally happy, and in a great mood after hearing my songs!
For more information on the talented Swedish performer, Alex Alexander, check out his newly designed website: http://www.AlexAlexanderLive.com/