Exclusive Interview with K-Pop Producer Andreas Oberg!
Q: For our readers who are getting the chance to know you for the first time, can you please give a little introduction about yourself?
A: I’m originally from Sweden & I started my music career as a guitarist, mainly playing jazz & instrumental music. I went to Royal Academy Of Music in Stockholm & after that I toured, performed & recorded my own music for a number of years. But I also performed with pop artists on the side.
Q: What made you decide to go into music and producing?
A: The touring part could be pretty exhausting so one did I realized I had lost the drive to continue doing that. So I started writing some music for TV and commercials but I got bored with that pretty fast. One of my best friends, Andreas Carlsson (who wrote big songs for Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC & Britney Spears) encouraged me to get into pop song writing. In the beginning I worked really hard just to build up a catalogue of solid songs.
Q: How did you discover K-Pop and do you have any favorite groups?
A: My first placement in Asia happened in 2012, when I got a song cut with a band called VIXX. They are now a major act in the K-Pop world but this was their very first release. I wrote it with Jonah Nilsson from Dirty Loops & Erik Lidbom. The song is called “Starlight” & VIXX fan club is named after that song. Since then I continued focusing on K-pop & J-pop and since then my songs have been on over 250 major releases (singles, albums, DVD’s). There is a group called SHINee from SM Entertainment. I have done 13 songs for them so far + 3 songs for the members solo projects. So I think my musical style goes well together with their vocals and performance.
Q: What is the creative process in terms of producing a song? How long does it usually take for you to create a song?
A: It depends on if we write and produce everything from scratch, then it can take a few days to finish a song. But sometimes it’s faster too, depends on how many layers there are in the vocals and the production. And sometimes I topline to tracks, which means I write melody & lyrics to an existing background. Those songs are often done within a day.
Q: How does it feel to see your music and songs come to life when you see the concept of the album and/or music video?
A: It’s very inspiring to see the single/album packaging, since the K-Pop labels put a lot of money and effort into those. Also the music videos are always fun to watch. Not to mention the live performances. Seeing SHINee perform 7 of my songs live in front of almost 60,000 people in Tokyo Dome 2016, was a very special moment for me.
Q: What are your thoughts on KCON and being here to experience a convention all dedicated to K-Pop? What are some of your impressions?
A: KCON is a very cool initiative, bringing all aspects of the K-Pop culture to America. The fan base in the US is constantly growing and I think we will see more collaborations between Asian pop acts and Western artists/groups in the future. Seeing Super Junior & Leslie Grace perform “Lo Siento” in front of approximately 20k people in NY was a cool experience.
Q: For the aspiring musicians and producers out there, what is some advice that you can give to those who are wanting to pursue a career in this field?
A: Listen to what’s out there but don’t copy too much. Try to bring in other influences from your personal musical background and turn it into something unique. The best composers I know all have a personal style. Also try to find good collaborators who can bring something to the table. Some of the best songs are made through co-writes.
Q: Last question, are there any updates, information or future plans that you would like to tell readers to look forward to in the coming future?
A: I’m just finishing up 2 weeks with SM Entertainment in Seoul. Me and me team were writing new songs for their many artists. Hopefully you guys will get to here a few of them soon.