I'm Timi Alexander, a 23-year old Finnish singer, producer and multi-instrumentalist living in London. I've written my first solo album 'Timi Alexander', the sound mostly takes influence from the 90s alternative rock and hip hop production, a combination that will further be explored on the future releases. On top of this, me and a friend are promoting our trap-pop duo Morceau: we released the first single "Chorus" a couple of weeks ago and so far the reception has been great.
Timi Alexander LP (Spotify) - https://open.spotify.com/album/4ys9BjTqYEcplBhKgjH3rA
I'm currently very open towards musical collaborations and features of any kind, and I consider improvising melodies one of my big strengths."
1.) What made you want to get into the music business in the first place? Did anyone influence you to do music? If so, who? Influences? Role Models?
I remember being about eight or nine, having heard Elvis’ ”Heartbreak Hotel” for the first time. The way he delivered that song left a huge impression on me and I started imitating him in hopes of nailing that legendary sound. Later on, I would discover the works of the greats like Mike Patton and Chris Cornell: they opened my mind up to the potential of the human voice and the million ways of using it. Since then, I’ve discovered countless different inspirations, but one of the most significant artists has proven to be none other than Mr. Kanye West. His numerous production styles and the ability to reinvent himself are jaw-dropping.
2.) Unfortunately the music industry is full of talented individuals who just don't get any recognition for their talent and/or work. What do you plan to do to make sure you stand out and get noticed?
I believe that that my wide-spanning influences from rock, electronic and hip hop realms - as well as my voice and personality - will ultimately stick out. On top of that, I produce my own music plus love co-writes and collaborations. The key is to keep on hanging: it took a household name like Michael Bolton 15 years (love his voice, no shame), but he always kept going despite the odds. I actually have a theory about the ’types’ who most often make it in the business:
A) The writer (Accumulating audience with memorable songs - bands often fall here, as do one-hit wonder types)
B) The virtuoso (Cream of the crop-talents, primarily loved for the pure skill - Also found in the covers department)
C) The shameless (The person who promotes him-/herself extensively without any regrets; the social butterfly - sometimes also a master of business)
D) The great live act (Able to generate considerable interest based purely on the quality of the live performing)
E) The inventor/personality (Pushes sonic or general artistic boundaries; the slowest climb to the top but once there, will usually remain relevant)
3.) Would you rather be on a major label or would you rather stay independent? Why or why not?
I’ve thought about this a lot and remain open-minded to everything. What people like Chance the Rapper are doing is inspiring, yet I’d also be up for being on a major label if an agreement was reached on me being able to keep up my usual collaboration and release pace without too many legal obstructions involved.
4.) Do you think that the traditional music industry model as we know it is dead? Why or why not?
Might be but what has gradually replaced it has turned out to be ten times better. The modern musical climate inspires me every day: inventive, daring artists have better career prospects than ever before, thanks to the modern, open-minded Internet crowds and the increased capability to handle things DIY. You have to be a bit more creative about making money, but I ultimately believe that the goal of earning your living through music is very reachable when you’re bringing something new to the table.
5.) How do you think the internet and social media affected the music industry and how musicians are able to market themselves?
Again, I think it’s created a greater ability to remain limitless and independent. One of the great things about the modern era of file-sharing is the capability to influence and be influenced by things from around the world. Obviously, this also breeds some homogenization particularly in the global mainstream art forms but overall this is an amazing thing, and I feel extremely privileged to live in the modern Internet era as a budding artist. 20 years ago, being a Finnish artist reaching for the global market would have been infinitely harder, now the chances are limitless...
6.) What is the most difficult thing you've had to endure in life and has that had any effect on your path to becoming a musician?
For whatever reason, I’ve felt like a maverick for the most of my life, no matter where I’ve been. Sometimes it’s a great thing because I’m able to think outside the box but there are moments when that inner ’outsider’ feeling can get rather heavy on the mind. The positive thing about it, however, has been my open-mindedness to get to know some very different people and stories, and all these moments have shaped my personal worldviews.
7.) Artists who try to make music for the general public and make more money are usually seen as "sell-outs." Do you see it that way and if so, what do plan to do to make sure you make music that is true to your brand and make a good living at the same time without having to "sell out"?
I honestly hate that word. To me, a great song is a great song, and it’s all relative in the song’s very own context, whether it’s John Zorn or Drake. A lot of my favourite artists are also great businessmen, and I appreciate that gift in them, as long as the music remains good to my ears as well. I think that the biggest philosophy to ’not being a sellout’ is ultimately creating art that you like, no matter how accessible or eccentric it is.
8.) When you do music, what would you like your listeners to get out of your music?
That’s a great question! I want to inspire people to think of art in their very own way, as well as just wanting to electrify people with my singing, performing and productions.