TKOH is a fast-rising singer-songwriter that should be on your radar if you’re into Queer Pop culture. Read this exclusive interview, and learn more about him and his latest EP ‘Fire Island Pining (Season 1),’ which is already heating up summer.
1 – First of all, where does the artistic name TKOH come from?
There’s part of me that’s a little embarrassed to share this! In high school I wrote poetry under the moniker “The King of Hearts” – it’s something that has just stuck throughout my evolution as a songwriter. The thing is, it sounds like a cheesy Y2K boy band name; my producer and I decided to truncate it to the acronym: “TKOH.”
I grew up in a very religiously conservative household, and face cards weren’t allowed. I’ve always been attracted to exploring “forbidden” themes through my art, so TKOH feels very fitting.
2 – How long have you been actively making music?
I’ve been writing music as a cathartic and therapeutic expression since I was a teenager – just for myself though! I seriously started pursuing making music 2 1/2 years ago when I started working with my producer and co-writer, t. Harts.
3 – For someone who hasn’t heard your new songs, how would you describe your own sound?
The TKOH sound falls into the category of pure “Queer Pop.” The joy of Pop music is that it draws and fuses together so many influences and styles – I also feel there’s nothing queerer than that. My music is colorful and loud.
4 – Why exactly did you release your latest EP ‘Fire Island Pinning (Season 1)’ during Pride month?
‘Fire Island Pining (Season 1)’ is my musical queer summer fantasy world. It’s so gay. It only felt appropriate to let the world have it during Pride Month!
5 – Will there be a continuation of this conceptual EP? If so, what can fans expect on Season 2?
That is the plan! And, with the positive response to Season 1, it’s safe to say ‘Fire Island Pining’ has been renewed for a second season.
When I write music, I often describe it in colors. It’s a very visual experience for me. We’ll still be playing with the same candy-sweet bubblegum pink and baby blue palette… but I think we’ll push the spectrum a bit. Perhaps a little deeper. We’re going to get nasty. Witchy. Raw.
It feels like “You & Your Man” has been the EP’s breakout fan favorite. Exploring relationships outside of monogamy isn’t specifically a gay phenomenon, but at the same time, it’s also particularly gay!
7 – Why do you think “Blondes Have More Fun” is your most-streamed tune on this EP?
“Blondes Have More Fun” was released a couple of weeks ahead of the EP, and I think people just ate it up! It was one of my favorite tracks to record, so I love that it resonated with my listeners.
Short answer: yes! We have some fun content in the works. If I had an unlimited budget and unlimited resources, I would have loved to drop a full short film for the EP. Unfortunately, that’s not in the cards this round… but we’ll be sure to keep you all fed!
Also, if you’re a queer artist or producer reading this and you’d be interested in collaborating on a remix or a project… this is your sign to reach out!
9 – What singer from the past (dead or alive) would you most love to collaborate with? Why?
I would DIE to get in the studio with Tove Lo. Her writing is so raw, sexual, and authentic… it’d be enough to just be a fly on the wall and soak up that energy.
10 – Finally, how challenging is it to achieve success for queer artists in the music industry today?
There is no better time to be alive as a queer artist making music! We have more power and influence than ever. But at the same time, it’s hard. We have to be loud and relentless. I think we’re at the beginning of a queer music renaissance where our art and is more accessible and consumable than ever.
CONNECT WITH TKOH NOW!
Beth Crowley: From Books To Music — A Revealing Interview
In this revealing interview, Beth Crowley shares insights into her creative process, the challenges she faces as an artist, and her passion for books and reading. Get ready to dive into the mind of this talented woman and find out what makes her music unique.
1 — Can you tell us about your new single “The Ghost Who Is Still Alive” and how it relates to the book of the same name?
“The Ghost Who Is Still Alive” is based on the book The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab, which is about a woman who makes a bargain with the devil where she will get to live forever, but the catch is that no one she meets will remember her. It’s such an interesting premise for a story — how much of life’s enjoyment comes from the people around you who love you? For the song, I wanted to capture how sad and haunting it would be to know that you can’t truly make an impact on the world. I tried to take some themes from the book so that people who have read it will know the “easter eggs” in the song, but it’s not so specific that people who haven’t read it wouldn’t enjoy it.
2 — What makes this composition worth listening to?
I am always proudest of my lyrics. It’s such a careful and painstaking process to craft the exact right lyrics, so I hope that alone makes “The Ghost Who Is Still Alive” worth listening to.
3 — Is there any specific book or author that has had a significant impact on your music?
I don’t think my first book-based song “Warrior” would have taken off like it did if it weren’t for Cassandra Clare (the author of the books it was based on) being incredibly kind and supportive not only when it came out but in the years since. I will always be grateful to her for that.
4 — What would be the title of your life story if it was a book?
Well, This Has Been Unexpected.
5 — Your tunes are often described as emotional piano ballads with cinematic elements. Are you open to experimenting with different sounds in the future?
Absolutely! I don’t think I have painted myself into a corner throughout the years with only having one “sound”— I have had songs that are a little more Rock, musical theatre, or even Country. Doing the same thing over and over again is boring, and I don’t ever want my music to get too predictable.
6 — “Warrior” is your most popular track to date, and it has been streamed over 16 million times on Spotify. What do you believe to be the key factors that contributed to this achievement?
Like I said earlier, Cassandra Clare sharing the song and being so supportive is a huge factor in that. But I also think “Warrior” just resonated with people. It’s about realizing that you are stronger than you think you are, which is something we not only see in tons of different characters through books/movie/television, but something people relate to within themselves as well.
I hate to be vague and say that it’s just a feeling I get, but it really is. When I am writing a song, sometimes I’ll finish a full set of lyrics and just sit with it for a while to see if it still feels right. But sometimes I immediately know it’s done. When I am in the studio, my producer Daniel and I will usually get to a point where we think it might be ready, then listen all the way through one more time just to make sure. It really does just boil down to a “feeling” though.
8 — What are some of the biggest challenges you have faced in your artistic career?
I think my biggest struggle has been trying to not take numbers and social media algorithms too personally. No one really knows how the algorithms work, which can be frustrating when it feels like they control if people are going to hear your music or not. When the algorithms don’t work in your favor and a song doesn’t do as well as you hoped, it’s easy to feel like it’s a failure even if the people who do hear it have good things to say about it. I have to remind myself that I can only do so much and just keep putting out music that I am proud of.
9 — When not working on new music, what other hobbies does Beth Crowley enjoy?
Unsurprisingly, I love reading. There is something really therapeutic about listening to an audiobook while doing a jigsaw puzzle, so I do that pretty often. I host trivia once a week at a bar, which I love. And I spend a lot of time with my family.
10 — Finally, can you reveal details about your upcoming projects?
“The Ghost Who Is Still Alive” is the first single from my upcoming album ‘Unabridged,’ which is going to be all book-based songs. I am really looking forward to seeing people’s reactions when I reveal which books I chose to write songs about, and I have some really great videos and other fun things to go along with them. It’s going to be a lot of fun.
CONNECT WITH BETH CROWLEY NOW!
More To Discover: Additional Insights Into Rubayne’s EP ‘Connections’
Don’t miss out on rising artist Rubayne’s new EP ‘Connections,’ a blend of genres he calls Bass Pop exploring the ups and downs of love. With a special live performance airing on February 24th and music videos planned, it’s an EP not to be missed. Read the interview to learn more.
1 — What is the main theme you explore in your new EP ‘Connections’?
The EP is a set of eclectic love stories that are connected to each other. Throughout the EP, you will discover the feeling of falling in love, being in love, and holding on to love in the toughest time.
2 — Is there any special meaning behind its title?
There are multiple. Firstly, the titles of the songs relate to each other. In addition, I made a stronger connection with my music by involving myself in the songwriting as well.
3 — Did you collaborate with other artists or producers on this project?
Yes. There are a couple of great singers involved with ‘Connections’! Some new, some I do know from the start. I must give credit and big ups to Romy Dya, Yunnee, EthanUno, and Ansaly for their amazing work.
4 — How did you go about crafting the overall sound and style?
The approach for creating ‘Connections’ was different in comparison to my regular creative approach. With each project, I first focused on selecting a main instrument that would characterize the song. Unattainable has the guitar, “Connections” has the bass, and “In Love Tonight” has the piano. After the main instrument and its melody, I would carve out the full production.
I had not, but I focused on having a blend of genres that I and the love theme associate with. I would say this blend of genres can be best described as Bass Pop.
6 — Is there a particular track on the EP that you have a special connection with?
Nope! They are equally special to me and as they complement each other, I feel that I have a special connection with the project as a whole.
7 — Are there any things you wish you had done differently?
When it comes to the EP, there’s nothing I wish I had done differently.
8 — In what ways do you think your songs will resonate with listeners?
I think this project, as well as other songs I have made, encourages its listeners to open up and acknowledge their feelings. I hope my music provides the listeners with a better understanding of themselves.
9 — Have you ever considered creating a music video for any of these news tracks?
I did! I feel like each of the songs has a visual story to tell. However, I have prepared something special for this EP which is visually pleasing as well.
10 — Is there anything else you would like to share about the EP that we haven’t covered in this interview?
To celebrate the release of ‘Connections,’ I recorded a live performance of the EP with all the vocalists and an amazing guitarist (Rob). It will air on February 24th and you can get notified here.
CONNECT WITH RUBAYNE NOW!
Discovering Lucii’s Musical Journey And Her New Song “Narcissist”
In this exclusive interview, Lucii shares more about her journey as a musician, the meaning and inspiration behind her new single “Narcissist,” and her plans for the future, including incorporating a live band into her performances and releasing a new album.
1 — How did you first become interested in music and what led you to pursue it as a career?
So I always sang and made songs on guitar as I was growing up but never thought I was good enough. I went to a rave at 17 and really loved it so I started DJing and producing and started to use my vocals on my tracks and it turned into a career!
2 — As a member of the LGBTQ community, how do you feel your identity influences your songs?
I feel like Idk I just write songs about girls, but I think cause I’m female writing about a female gives this extra sparkle of divine femininity.
3 — How do you aim to use your artistic platform to uplift and inspire others in the community?
I just want to make people feel something, music is a form of expression sometimes easier than talking. Mac Miller helped so much with my mental health and I just wanna be that to someone. Make people not feel alone, especially the LGBTQ community.
4 — Please tell us more about the meaning and inspiration behind your new single “Narcissist.”
I was in therapy and was describing this person to my therapist and she said (her name is Andrea and I shout her out in the song) “well that person sounds like a Narcissist” I NEVER heard of that word in my life so I started writing that night “you’re a Narcissist says my therapist” and that’s how it came about. I just wanted an angry song about a Narcissist so I made it.
Probably “thank god for Andrea I should send the bill to ya for all the times I’m in the chair wondering how I got here” Andrea is my therapist and I just think that’s a BA.
6 — How has your experience been as an electronic music producer and how has that influenced your shift into the Pop genre?
I feel like it influenced my Pop music a lot because I want my songs to have energy even if they’re sad, I want that emotional wave rollercoaster to feel like dance music gives.
7 — Are you planning to incorporate a live band into your performances?
YES!! I cannot wait to start playing with my band. I can’t wait to be closer to my audience and just play my songs, that is my dream and I can’t wait to do that soon hehe.
Details on the upcoming album will be announced soon.
9 — What message would you like to send to aspiring LGBTQ musicians looking to break into the industry?
I would say just fucking go for it we NEED you. Look at fletcher she is breaking boundaries right now she is a full-on amazing Pop star and watching her grow has just been so inspiring and made me realize I can do this, I can make the move from being a DJ to being a live performance act.
10 — How do you see your music evolving in the future?
I see myself going through eras, I really love how Taylor Swift each of her albums feel like a chapter to read from ‘1989’ to ‘REPUTATION’ and OMG ‘Folklore.’ All of them are AMAZING but I just want to give that feeling with every one of my albums, as you listen to it and you’re transported back in time to a feeling.