Anyone can tell you who's already made it, but HuffPost Arts & Culture's On Our Radar series is here to tell you who's about to blow up -- and, in some cases, go pop.
Elin Ruth (née Sigvardsson) is a Swedish bombshell who just moved to New York City. No, this isn't the beginning of a pulp novel. It's the true story of a singer-songwriter in search of a new beginning on our fair shores. In January, Ruth released her self-titled album, and the single "Bang" debuted on CMJ's Top 200 chart. Today, we're honored to premiere the video for "Bang" on the Arts&Culture page. See the video below, and read on to find out more about the singer.
The Huffington Post: Who or what was an early influence on your work?
The woods and the sea of my hometown, my creative dad and his vinyl collection, Bob Dylan's harmonica playing, and my very first guitar -- which was a Spanish guitar someone had forgotten in my father's studio. I snatched it, spray painted it red, and wrote my first songs on it.
HP: What were the lowest and highest points in your career so far?
Lowest: I got burnt out from working too hard when I was 24 years old. I almost developed a hatred towards music, felt threatened by my guitar and got a terrible case of writer's block.
Highest: Falling back in love with music following my low period is a big one. I had put my own career on the shelf for awhile to have a reprieve from my performance anxiety. But I slowly started to play with friends in different constellations, and finally I found joy in music again. Opening for Kris Kristofferson is definitely another highlight as well! We played at a huge outdoor venue -- it's actually a former limestone quarry -- in Sweden. He was such a nice guy. He stood on the side of the stage, listened to my entire set and gave me a big bear hug when I got off stage.
HP: How would your childhood art/music/theater teacher describe you?
My first piano teacher, Yvonne, would probably describe me as a rhythmic dreamer who always played by heart and ear but refused to learn how to read sheet music -- and who sometimes hid to get out of performing at piano recitals!
HP: Name a book, artist or musician who you are embarrassed about not knowing.
I keep saying I love the beatniks, but truthfully I have read far from all of them. Jack Kerouac's "On the Road," for example. I only made it halfway through the book, and never returned to it again...
HP: Why does this project matter?
This video means a lot to me since "Bang" is a track off my first-ever album to be released in the US! Releasing the video today on International Women's Day is a way for me to send some love and inspiration to commemorate all the strong and amazing women out there in the world. Making the video together with talented Michael McQuilken (producer / director) proved that creative minds and helpful friends means so more than big money and fancy business.
Elin Ruth's self-titled album is available here.