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Swedish Singer-Songwriter Josefine on Pop Breakthroughs, New Song ‘Weekends’

The Stockholm-based artist talks about simplicity and not having to be perfect in their quest for a hit

Anurag Tagat Jul 28, 2021

Stockholm-bred singer-songwriter Josefine. Photo: Courtesy of the artist

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If there’s one thing we know about pop music from Sweden, it’s always hit the right notes. From ABBA to Max Martin and several more chart-toppers in between over the years, the Scandinavian country has often been synonymous with hitmakers.

Out in Stockholm, Josefine Hallén (who goes by her first name) continues that tradition, hitting a million streams within a month of releasing her carefree new song “Weekends.” Do Swedes just have something innately music-oriented about them? Josefine says, “I think naturally we bring our melodic flavor and emotion to every piece of music we create.”

On “Weekends,” Josefine isn’t exactly offering any kind of groundbreaking truth about life. It’s more about the little things that she’s nudging everyone to enjoy, like listening to Coldplay. She adds, “Surprisingly or rather unsurprisingly I get lots of notifications on socials of people sharing this track on a Friday.”

Releasing music since 2018 on streaming platforms, Josefine has amassed wide listenership for songs like “Let It Go” (which just received a scintillating remix from Ghana’s DJ Boat), “Goddess Kinda Power” and “They Don’t Know Me.” When it comes to finding global success or seeking a breakthrough in the crowded world of pop music, Josefine says when you’re fighting for space “you have to think out of the box and innovate all the time.” The artist’s own method involves getting “totally immersed” in the creation process of her music. She adds, “As an artist and songwriter you have that realization that many of your listeners may be experiencing the same specific feelings of joy, heartbreak, sadness, love or inspiration in the same moment they hear the track, so this process of making and sharing music has the power to unite the audience in that same emotion you felt when first writing the song.”

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The second part, of course, is promoting the music. Josefine recently leveraged social audio platform Clubhouse. She mentions that she and her team organized a “power hour meeting” on the platform, bringing together “inspirational and incredible women in music.” In turn, it led to “Goddess Kinda Power” reaching new listeners even a year or so after its release.

Returning to speak about songwriting, Josefine has artists often have to let go of ideas and shouldn’t be hung up on perfectionism. It’s been a challenge for her as well to make sure she’s content enough with a track to release it. In that vein, Josefine’s next single in September is termed as “one of the best and most danceable” songs” that she has made. She adds, “I want to keep collaborating with other artists and creators also, on both originals and remixes because this collaborative process can truly create magic.”

Listen to “Weekends” below.

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