Known for writing engaging lyrics with intricate melodies, Prince of Sweden is a singer-songwriter with an intimate, unique sound. Hailing from South London, the artist is gaining a following with his popular releases. We speak with Prince of Sweden about his EP Live From A Dark Room, creative processes, music streaming platforms and future plans.
OSR: Why did you choose to pursue a career in music?
Prince of Sweden: Music has always been my passion and I’ve played various instruments since primary school. I had a job in an office for a while but just ended up staring out the window all day. I had the best seat in the house for that as well – right in the corner. Very bad for productivity.
OSR: What inspires you to make music?
Prince of Sweden: Mainly it’s a combination of listening to other people’s music and general dissatisfaction with everything that I’ve written previously. If ever I’m struggling for motivation, listening to some Nick Cave usually sorts it out. I’ve never really been a “waking up at 3 in the morning with a great idea” kind of guy.
OSR: What can you tell us about your EP Live From A Dark Room?
Prince of Sweden: Well, it’s got some songs on it. An old one, a cover and a couple of new ones. I recorded it with a couple of friends and basically played each song live a few times and we took the best take of each. We did it all in a morning and voila.
OSR: Did you face any challenges when recording the EP?
Prince of Sweden: We filmed all of the songs as well so most of the difficulties came on that side of things. We recorded it at my mate’s house and we gaffer-taped up the windows in his living room to get it dark enough. He was living with a doctor at the time, so we borrowed her surgeon’s headlight and stuck it to a table and shone the light through a glass bottle. I think that’s how they do it in the movies. Anyway, it turned out pretty alright I think.
OSR: What do you hope people take from your music?
Prince of Sweden: I like writing lyrics so I suppose I want to write songs that you can go back to and keep discovering details if that makes sense. Most of my favourite artists write lyrically interesting songs. I tend to get bored of a melody pretty quickly.
OSR: What is your creative process?
Prince of Sweden: I tend to have an idea as to the kind of song I want to write and do my best to aim for that. Then I drink some red wine and stare at a blank piece of paper for a bit and it comes out completely different.
OSR: Do you feel Live From A Dark Room is an evolution from your previous releases?
Prince of Sweden: Yeah, I think it’s a bit different from previous stuff. I decided to be more serious for a bit. I think before I was trying to be a bit tongue-in-cheek or something, but that gets tiresome after a while. Also, I got a new guitar.
OSR: What are your thoughts on online music streaming platforms?
Prince of Sweden: I think it’s amazing that you can pretty much listen to any song ever released – great for the consumer. It is difficult getting people to live gigs and if people are only writing songs to get on playlists rather than for albums then that’s a shame. I still truly think that the album is the thing. It’s the whole piece. The big apple. Swings and roundabouts, I guess.
OSR: What is your favourite meal and why?
Prince of Sweden: Curry maybe. It’s hard to beat a dopiaza and some pilau rice. Raghu Dixit on the jukebox. Now that’s living.
OSR: If you could perform with any musician, who would it be and why?
Prince of Sweden: I’d perform with Tom Waits. Ideally, it would be in an old theatre like on Big Time and I’d be the guy at the back bashing a bin lid into a second bin lid. Probably with a pencil moustache as well for old time’s sake.