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Blog interview: Amir Ekbatani

Hello Amir how are you?
Feeling good and grateful, thanks!

Congratulations on the release of “Tell Me You Love Me” how does it feel?

It’s nice to send this out into the world. I’ve spent a lot of time with it and I’m happy to see where it goes. So far people have seemed to really dig it and that always feels good.

What’s the story behind the song?

TMYLM began as a sad song about an ex-girlfriend who was not very good to me. I was so angry when I first started writing it. But I couldn’t finish it while focused on the bad. So I instead focused on the good part of that relationship, which was that in the beginning…it was really fun. The thrill of the chase of someone new. The ups and downs and twists and turns in navigating dating a stranger.

This particular adventure didn’t end so well for me. But it began really beautifully. Hopefully, we learn from our mistakes in life, but this is about a time when I didn’t know I was making a mistake in chasing someone who was unavailable. I thought I could win them over and there is an excitement to that thought process.

I think it’s easy to demonize our exes but we forget why it hurts so bad to lose them: because they also made us feel really good. In this particular scenario, ignorance was bliss and I haven’t been able to be that dumb simp ever since. This is my homage to being a silly hopeless romantic.

You used a variety of vintage instruments on there – what’s your go to?

I started collecting vintage analog synthesizers before I even really knew how to create sounds on them. This song really forced me to dig deep within my instruments to create what I was hearing in my head. Although I ended up using the Juno 106 for the bulk of the sounds, I think the OB-X8 became my favorite synth in the process. It’s just so powerful and musical. It’s hard to NOT make a cool sound on it.

You’re an artist from Los Angeles how did it all begin for you?

I was an athlete my whole life, having played college football. That turned into a career in fitness. Music had always been my dream but I didn’t grow up playing it and I didn’t know “the rules”. So I went back to college for it in 2019, and slowly started building chops and confidence. In 2022, I decided to remove everything from my life that didn’t serve my goals of playing/making music for a living. I moved to Montana and built a studio where I could live and create in nature, as undistracted as possible. I just started releasing music in 2024, so….in a way, it’s just now beginning. And I’ve never been more on fire for something.

What did you listen to growing up?

I  listened to a lot of different music. When I was a small boy I loved pop icons like Michael Jackson, Mariah Carey, Prince, and Whitney Houston. As an adolescent, I loved hip-hop. As a teenager, I listened to a lot of rock/hardcore/metal/alternative. In college, I discovered Jazz and fell in love. As an adult, I found electronic music and have really enjoyed going to electronic concerts/festivals. At the end of the day I just love real songs and unique sounds, so I’ve never been able to contain myself to one genre. I find the same for my own music.

You’ve taught yourself how to play the keyboard, sing, and guitar. What for you was the hardest?

Singing is the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. It’s the most vulnerable act I think a human can do, especially when you’re singing your own songs. The hardest part about it is the necessity of remaining calm while being completely scared/nervous because if you’re not relaxed you run into a whole slew of issues as a singer….intonation problems, poor vocal technique, etc. On top of all the technical and emotional obstacles, you also have to be engaging the crowd in a genuine way to keep their attention and to best tell your story, while not being a total cheeseball. It’s just the ultimate act of being one’s true self, usually in front of hostile strangers. Terrifying but so fulfilling.

It seems you have a love for 80s pop culture, what’s your favourite 80s film?

I do! I love the 1980s. I think it’s between Cocktail or Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

What are you listening to at the moment?

I love the new releases by Gesaffelstein and Justice and can’t wait for their new albums.

What are you looking forward to doing next?

I’ll be releasing two more singles leading to my debut album releasing by September 2024. Working hard on that and learning a ton.

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