Tuning In "Q&A with Niser"
For Pride month, I thought I’d do an artist spotlight featuring one of my favorite up-and-coming LGBTQ artists, Niser. Niser caught my attention not just for his smoking hot house groves, but also for his use of photo manipulation to create a virtual avatar and persona, combing music and art in truly innovative ways.
With that in mind, I got together with Niser to dig into his inspiration, influences, drives, etc., and shine a light on his amazing talents so that you can get to enjoy them too. Q: Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about your background, where you grew up, etc. A: Hi, my name is Stéphane, I grew up in Switzerland, where I currently live with my husband and created the Niser project in 2019.
I started my musical journey in 2000, when I was 16, as an amateur remixer (under various pseudonyms) of Mylène Farmer, a French singer with a singular universe. (Editors Note: Mylène Farmer is one of the most successful French artists of all time).
In 2006 I took lessons to improve my skills and created my first original songs without using any samples. In 2009 I taught myself how to use a computer and DAW to make music and went on to release several albums and singles between 2010 and 2018 under various pseudonyms.
In 2019 I got inspired and decided to do something completely different by creating Niser Music, a label with 3 pseudos’, Isner, Senir, and of course Niser, each representing a different style. I’ve since retired the other names to focus exclusively on Niser. As the project/brand took life I was able to land several collaborations under Niser for remixes and original titles with Yianna Katsoulos, Diego.A, Mon Ami Miò and DJ ESTEBAN (Fabien Scarlakens).
Niser is not just about me though, it’s about helping to promote other like-minded artists, as such I created the “Niser Insta Music” playlist on Spotify to help other independent artists get the exposer they deserve.
Recently I’ve been heavily focused on the release of my upcoming album “Chronos” and a remix collaboration with Nyls a French-Australian-Italian artist for his track “Somebody Else” released on Vinyl, CD, and Digital on the Atlantika label.
Q: Niser is a very unique name, does it have a special meaning?
A: It’s an anagram, Niser is virtual, a composited avatar created with my face and features from another artist… The red hair is an homage to Mylène Farmer and her fiery red locks.
The musical styles range between Tech House, Deep House, Trap, Trap House, Downtempo, Techno, and Trance.
The “Niser” style is more about creating a universe, hiding codes, secret messages, etc... That’s the Niser style.
Q: Are you from a musical family, or are you the first to brave the music industry?
A: My grandfather and grandmother sang in regional choirs. I wouldn’t say we’re an especially musical family, but music has often been performed at home. Q: What inspired or inspired you to start producing music? A: I’ve been listening to and had a passion for music from a young age. So, once I started using eJay software it was a natural transition to jump into the music industry, but it wasn’t until 2000 that I started wrapping my head around how it was promoted/marketed.
Q: What are some of your biggest musical influences?
A: Laurent Boutonnat, Mylène Farmer, Madonna, Benny Benassi, Jean-Michel Jarre, the Pet Shop Boys. Q: If you could perform anywhere in the world, where would it be and why? A: If I am given the technical means to make a fully animated 3D “Niser” DJ for example, I could perform virtually anywhere. However, I’m more of the private/small gathering type, the scene has never really attracted me.
Q: If you could collaborate with any producer/singer/artist from any period, who would it be?
A: Mylène Farmer
Q: Your last track, The Boss, has a great deep tech-house vibe with lyrics that nonFrench speakers might miss. You talk about working all day but confining yourself in solitude in the evening and on weekends. Are hypersensitivity and social anxiety something that you have had to deal with on your own, and if so, what are some of the things that have made you feel more comfortable?
A: Yes, I’ve really come to terms with my hypersensitivity and introversion since the Coronavirus pandemic. The catastrophic management of the Covid-19 epidemic in Switzerland also contributed to a lot of my social anxiety.
My companion and I had two Covid-19 viruses and I lost both my father and grandfather early in the pandemic because safety measures were introduced very late, and the lock-downs were far too short. In Switzerland (like a lot of the world) a large chunk of people ignored the rule, which gives me social anxiety and exit anxiety. I took on the persona of “The Boss” because you can hardly imagine a boss suffering from hypersensitivity and introversion.
I’ve experienced a lot of situations throughout my school and work lives of having to be something I am not, trying to convince myself that I am just shy because of my need to isolate myself after work and on weekends to watch TV shows, movies, and listen to, or make music. Not many people understand and instead reprimand you by making remarks about being social, about taking medication. But it’s not a disease, it’s my personality.
Q: Are there any social issues or causes that are close to your heart? What are the things that really matter to you?
A: To allow people to be who they are, to no longer judge physical appearances or psychological issues.
Q: If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
A: No longer having a world full of people with mindsets from a bygone era.
Q: What’s the next step for you? Any upcoming singles, tour dates or collaborations you’d like to mention?
A: I’m releasing one single per month is released from “Je Suis Music” through to November. the next single will be “Iconic” with others to follow featuring influences ranging from Trap, Downtempo, and Hip Hop from July onwards.
Q: What’s the main thing you want people to take away from your music?
A: That Niser does not have singular a musical style but instead, a universe full of codes that will be revealed and defined with the next singles. That while Niser is not physically real, there is a lot of photo editing, musical creation, music production, and promotion that I manage alone.
Q: Any thoughts, comments, or closing ideas that you would like to share?
A: Be authentic, your worst enemy might just be yourself.
You can find Niser on Spotify (Niser Music) and on Instagram @nisermusic, check him out and give him a follow!