Aug 3, 2020
When you’re born to make music everything else tends to fall into place.
Stockholm-based musician Johanna Andrén, aka JÁNA, has always been surround by music. Growing up, her family consistently played jazz and classical artists throughout their home, so when she started writing and making music of her own, it didn’t come as a surprise to anyone. At the age of 9, she was already training with the classical guitar.
When she decided to study music formally at college, her musical essence started to take on a more concrete form, and since then JÁNA delights the music industry with her talent and eye for storytelling.
Her debut EP “Flowerworks” shows exactly this: The power that she has to tell a story through beats and melodious lyrics. With each song on the EP you are submerged by the vivid emotions she pours out to her audience.
We had the pleasure to talk a bit with JÁNA about her EP, her inspirations, and her music career.
1. Tell us about the single “Buds”!
“Buds” is about growing apart from someone, feeling friction within a relationship but knowing you’re not able to change it. Me and Erik Bodin (drummer of Little Dragon) made the track together, I played guitar and he the drums, then Yukimi Nagano (singer of Little Dragon) and myself made the lyrics and melodies together.
2. The song is part of your debut EP “Flowerworks” which features some incredible songs – I personally love Carpark. Can you describe the creative process for any of the tracks?
Ah! Thank you! “Wild Roses” and “Buds” started with Yukimi and Erik in their studio, I made the first draft of “Lotus” in my studio then brought it to them. I had some very talented friends recording bass, drums, and guitar and then we put it all together in Little Dragon’s studio.
I wrote ”Carpark” in my parent’s garage where I had put up my own little studio, then shared it with two guitarists and we put the whole thing together. That song really started out of frustration singing the “why” phrases over and over.
“Dew” was written with a friend from school, in one day, we actually kept the demo recordings all the way.
3. Do you have a favorite song from the EP?
Hmm. “Carpark” is the last song I wrote for the EP so it resonates most with me at the moment. Although, “Wild Roses” was a special one as it started off the whole thing. And it was my first session with both Yukimi and Erik.
4. How was shooting the “Buds” video and how did you come up with the video concept?
It was lovely. Super warm day for being in Sweden. The locations were so beautiful too, all credit to Julius Hayes who found them and filmed the whole thing. We wanted to symbolize a distance within a relationship and tried to show it by barely touching each other and without any eye contact throughout the video.
5. What are your biggest inspirations in music?
Being introduced to Erykah Badu’s music was an eye-opener for me. I’m also super inspired by Tyler The Creator and Frank Ocean amongst others.
6. How do you think quarantine affected your creativity and the development of your music?
As I can’t quite live off of music (yet) I was working like three jobs before, but due to the pandemic, I’ve gotten fewer work shifts and more time spent on music, which is great. But there’s another type of stress coming with it of course. Although I have a huge privilege and am so lucky I’ve been able to live on with my life as I used to in most ways.
7. Tell us about your upcoming projects!
I’m working on my next EP at the moment and have been for a while. Mainly with the same people I made “Flowerworks” with. All the songs I wrote for “Flowerworks” were written during a relationship, except for “Carpark”, so this next one will be somewhat about the time after that relationship and whatever is and was on my mind during that time.