Musician and author, Yozoh has caught the attention of many with her heart touching lyrics and sweet voice throughout her years as an artist. We, at Hallyure, had the opportunity to get to know Yozoh.
Yozoh debuted in 2007 with the album, “My Name is Yozoh”. Over the years she has released many more albums and multiple singles, with her latest releases being “Quince Tree” and “Weak People” in 2021.
Join us as we get to know Yozoh as she takes us through her journey thus far!
It is a great pleasure for Hallyure to be able to interview you! Could you please introduce yourself to our readers?
Hi, nice to meet you! I’m a musician, author and owner of a small bookshop, Yozoh.
Is there any special meaning behind your stage name, “Yozoh”?
There is a book called “No Longer Human” by a Japanese author Osamu Dazai. The main character of the book is ‘Ōba Yōzō.’ Ever since I read the book and was moved by it when I was 20, I used ‘Yozoh’ as my nickname and after I debuted it naturally became my stage name too.
Let’s talk about your latest release “Quince Tree”! It has been a while since you’ve released a new single, could you tell us more about the thought and work that went behind the making of this single?
I’ve been feeling the need for a new single for quite some time, but because I was occupied with writing and publishing books, switching gears was more difficult than I had expected. Then I met a musician named Sagong and because of him I was able to work on the new single. Ever since we began working together, everything that I had been dragging my feet on all of a sudden felt like clockwork. I’m very grateful to have met such a perfect partner.
As an independent artist, who takes part in lyric writing, composition, performance, and production, how is the music making process like for you?
It’s different each and every time. Sometimes I do things by myself, sometimes I collaborate with other musicians and sometimes I feature on another producer’s song with the help of my label, in which case I get to work for movies, dramas, or games. Every project is interesting and fun to me.
In your music, one thing that stands out the most is your sensible and witty lyrics. Could you take us through the lyric writing process in your songs?
I consciously archive emotions, images and messages I feel in life and constantly ruminate on them. In this process, things that have not yet become specific start to become specific – I start to arrive at decisions like ‘this story should be told as a song,’ ‘that story should be told as a prose.’ Then the stories to be told as a song get shaped down to fit a melody. It’s a process that is similar to and at the same time very different from writing a poem.
In your many years of experience in the music industry, how is it like collaborating with different artists?
It was fun. Some of the artists I’ve met in person and some others we collaborated without meeting in person. They were equally fun. Like how actors casted in the same movie get to share a filmography, musicians get to share a song by collaborating with each other. This makes me feel happy. Sharing something with others makes you happy, you know?
Are there any artists you would like to collaborate with in the future?
Ah there are too many, but just off the top of my head, maybe Benny Sings?
As you’ve debuted in the year 2007, over the past fourteen years, as you’ve come out with three albums and various singles, how would you say you’ve grown as an artist?
I think I’ve grown pretty well. I don’t have a big ambition as a musician. I want to become a well versed and stable musician, not a sensational one. Just like driving. I want to become a driver with no tickets in 30 years, not a racing driver.
Is there any song of yours that you’ve written over the years that you hold very dear to you? If so could you tell us more about it?
All of them hold dear to me. To the question “Who do you like more – mom and dad?” I was that kid who would always answer, “I like both.”
Now, moving into a few personal questions that might help your fans to get to know you better, are there any artists who you would consider as your musical inspirations?
There is no artist in particular who gives me musical inspirations. Rather it’s the friends, animals and plants I meet in life who inspire me.
Do you have any favourite songs that you would like to recommend to the audience?
The newer the song the better!
As an artist, feeling creatively blocked is something everyone faces, is there any way you are able to overcome this?
That is a moment I also fear the most. I obsessively input by reading books, listening to music, watching movies, going to exhibitions and listening attentively to my friends’ stories. I wish my creativity would last for however long, but I’m also ready for the day my creativity stops if it ever comes. In fact, deep down, one of the reasons I started a bookshop was to get myself ready for that day. I believe that even if I can no longer produce creative work, my eyes that know how to see good creative work will not die.
Being someone who’s been in both the music as well as the acting industry for so long, is there any advice you would like to give to future aspirants?
You want me to give advice? I hate advice!
As fans, can we expect any new releases from you soon?
Last but not the least, is there anything you would like to say to your fans?
Be safe and sound always.
Listen to Yozoh’s music here-
IMAGE/VIDEO COURTESY- MAGIC STRAWBERRY SOUND