This time, we sat down with James Hersey, a singer-songwriter from Vienna, Austria. As an artist who does not collaborate often, James made his first mainstream dent on the charts with an original song called ‘Coming Over.’ Kygo and Dillon Francis then hopped on the track, a collaboration with James that now has over 125 million streams on Spotify alone. He was able to replicate that success with the smash hit ‘Miss You,’ which was written, sung, and produced by James.
Starting as a kid on drums who played in punk bands with a mohawk, I respect the Mohawk, James evolved into a hell of a songwriter. Even if you haven’t put the face to the voice, you have no doubt driven in the car, drank at a bar, or worked out to one of James’ beautiful, infectious melodies. After seeing massive success on the track with Kygo and Dillon Francis, singing at festivals all over the world, James could have become a go-to vocalist for mainstream electronic producers, and there would have been nothing wrong with that. Many take that path. But for James, he stayed true to his own artistry, who he was, and made the music he wanted to make. As James’ Dad says, “Creativity allows you to make mistakes, art is knowing which ones to keep.” In this conversation, we discuss the story behind ‘Coming Over’ with Kygo and Dillon Francis, a pivotal getaway experience in Austin, Texas, judgment on social media, the inspirations behind his latest project, Innverse, and more.
Even if you aren’t particularly passionate about music, or maybe you haven’t discovered James Hersey yet, I encourage you to listen to the full extent of this conversation. There are a lot of good takeaways that apply to many aspects of life outside of music. If you do anything creative, or maybe you’re at a crossroads and aren’t sure where to go, give this a listen. I’m not saying you’ll find the answer here, but you’ll be listening to a couple of people who share that uncertainty and work through it every day. So without further ado, here is our wide-ranging conversation with James Hersey.