Mustard had the pleasure of speaking with London’s Alex Tan. Together we discussed making noise, their relationship with music, releasing a song on their birthday, and so much more!
1. Mustard would first like to say happy birthday! They are grateful to have you join them today. How are you doing?
Thank you Mustard ! And thank you so much for having me. I am feeling great today!
2. According to your linktree bio, you make noise for a living. What are some of your favorite sounds? How would you describe the noise you make?
Outside of music, I love white noises, I feel like it helps me focus but I also love specific noises like the sound of my coffee machine in the morning!
That being said my bio just was a fun punch line of me realising I make a living of my music which is a fun way to say that people actually enjoy the sound coming out of my mouth !
I would describe the “sound I make” with pop music !
3. What was your relationship with Music growing up? How did you discover it?
I’ve had a pretty solid relationship with music growing up, I was put into a choir when I was 6 and grew up only wanting to learn more instruments and singing techniques! Fun anecdote though when I was 7 my parents brought me to a music store and I sat down on a piano and started playing, I had no idea what I was doing but it sounded great to me and I stayed there for a whole hour! From that day on I’ve been playing the piano, then taught myself the guitar and the rest is history!
4. Is there a song or album that had a significant impact on you? Could you share more?
When I first heard Hallelujah on the radio covered by Jeff Buckley I was around 15 and I was fascinated, I picked up my dad’s old guitar and started teaching it to myself with the goal of being able to sing and play this song! A year later I won my first singing contest by singing this song in the final! It definitely had a big impact and inspired me massively in my music. I still sing it very often.
5. What is your songwriting process? Who are some of your favorite songwriters?
I would love to say that I have a specific songwriting process but I think it is very much all over the place haha. I would be walking in the street or riding the tube or even taking a shower and a melody would hit me and I would just record a voice note on my phone and work on it at home. Most of the time I get a melody first and then jump on my piano or guitar to keep writing it but very recently I started writing about specific themes and finding the melody later! Like I said all over the place 🙂
Some of my favourite songwriters are: Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, Julia Michaels, Charlie Puth…
6. Who (or what) influences you?
That is always a hard question because I think it changes very often but I want to say that I am mostly inspired by the great people I have around me, I care so much about my family and friends and that has always been the case for me as I am not from the UK I don’t see my family very often and I think it shows a lot in my music.
In terms of musical influences I grew up listening to a lot of different music from Avril Lavigne to Coldplay, One Republic and P!nk, Lady Gaga…
7. How has social media helped you as an artist? Do you have a favorite platform?
I think as an artist, having a community and being able to share your art with the world is so important and it also fuels a lot of my creativity. I used to hate TikTok when it first came out but I learnt to love it and I feel more free to express myself on there as it is much less of a picture perfect type of platform !
8. You had the opportunity to play with human Charlie Puth. Could you share with us how that came about? Will there be any collaborations with Charlie in the future?
This still sounds unreal to this day but it was such a great opportunity and I’m so grateful I got to do it. I entered a random contest that was organised by NRJ which is the first French national radio, I had such little hopes that I would ever win that in the video I submitted I was wearing pyjamas… I ended up being selected and got sent to Paris to sing with him on live radio and I was a nervous wreck!
Nothing in the cards unfortunately right now haha but if I ever get the chance to collaborate with him again I would jump on it as he is one of my favourite songwriter out there and he was such a nice person in real life as well!
9. With it being your birthday, what is your favorite kind of gift? Is there a type of gift you dislike?
I think my favourite kind of gift would be something really thoughtful that shows you know me as a person rather than something expensive or shiny haha
I love any type of gifts because if you gifted me something it does mean that I mean something to you however some gifts are really impersonal even though it’s always nice to get a gift 🙂
10. You’ve performed at Katzspace in London. What was that experience like?
It was a great evening it had been a few years since I’ve performed my originals on stage and I think Katzspace was the perfect little venue to get back out there. The line up performing that night was extremely talented and I think this will definitely stay in my memories as a beautiful night and sort of a rebirth of my original music!
11. A human gets the chance to see you perform. How would you describe your live performance? Is there a venue or city you would love to perform in?
I would describe my live performance as fun but emotional, I love to share my stories and I think most of all I love sharing this amazing connexion with the audience! And I feel like I’m the lucky one when humans show up to my shows 🙂
Being from Paris France I always wanted to perform in this great Parisian venue called “L’olympia” but also one of my dream is to perform in New York! World tour would make me ecstatic of course haha
13. When did the idea come to mind to release a song on your birthday? Could you share more about “January 4th?”
The story behind January 4th started with a joke when I recorded a voice note to a friend stating a list of reasons why I hated my birthday and he listened to it and told me I should write a song about it so I went home that day sat on my piano and the song just came out of me within minutes.
I then decided to post it on TikTok as a joke and I received such positive feedback from it, a few people gave me the idea of releasing it on my birthday and then Greg (producer) contacted me asking if he could produce the song and saying that it would be genius to release it on the 4th of January. Let’s keep in mind this happened two weeks before the release so I had a pretty hectic end of the year but it was the most fun, I got to shoot the artwork with my best friend and do all the recordings and helped with the production etc..
Releasing the song on my birthday was such a cool gift to myself and I’m so glad I did it !!
14. What is next for Alex Tan?
No one is ready for what’s next! I have a full repertoire of originals that I want the world to hear so this year I want to be able to release as many of those songs as I can while keeping on writing and aiming to perform my songs on stage as much as I can!
When I say I make noise for a living this is the dream, being able to share my noise and live out of my passion and my art 🙂
15. Where can readers listen to your music?
Fellow humans can listen to January 4th on all streaming platforms and I want to thank everyone that has contributed to this release as well as everyone that has shared it and streamed it so far, it makes me the happiest!
I have a lot to release in the future and I also post many of my own stuff on social media so I would recommend to follow me on those so that you know what I’m up to !