HRVY is one of the UK’s leading social media stars and has just released his EP Talk To Ya and a music video for his single “Personal” which has over 150 million views. At only 19 years old, the English singer has close to 5 million followers across his social media platforms and his following is only growing. HRVY wrote his first song at the age of eight and became popular with his single Thank You in 2013. He was a full-time presenter on the BBC TV show Friday Download in 2016. Now, HRVY will be opening for The Vamps, nine times this fall on their Four Corners tour. In addition, he recently collaborated with Malu Travejo on “Hasta Luego” and released the music video three months ago, which has currently amassed over 28 million views. HRVY discusses with Pulse Spikes his creative process and how he describes his music.
When did you start singing?
I started singing when I was 13, seriously, but I have sung all of my life.
Do you remember the first song you ever sung?
This first song was by One Direction called “Little Things.” Back in the day, way back.
What drew you to singing?
I watched a lot of YouTube covers. Also, my dad used to sing as well. So I don’t know, that kind of drew me in. That kind of inspired me.
When did you realize you wanted to become a singer?
When I was around 13, I realized I should take it seriously. My friends were like, “You know you should start singing.” So that’s when I started.
Who are your musical influences?
My biggest musical influences are Justin Timberlake because he’s a triple threat. He can sing, he can dance, he can act. I love Tori Kelly, I think she’s amazing.
Do you play any instruments?
I don’t. I am not talented like that. I can’t play any, I can play the spoons very well though.
If you could play an instrument, which one would you want to play?
I really want to learn the piano, I feel like it’s very romantic. It’s a beautiful instrument.
What’s your favorite song at the moment?
I’ve got to think about this because I listen to a lot of music. Also the music I listen to isn’t current. I am listening to a guy called Bazzi, and it’s called “Mine”.
Let’s talk about your EP Talk To Ya. Do you have a favorite song on your EP?
I do. My favorite song on there is “Personal” because it is fun and I like fun songs.
How did the EP come about?
So, we recorded the EP of the summer of 2017, so just last year. It didn’t take too long. But all songs take awhile to put together. But it was fun, I enjoyed it.
Tell me a little about the process behind recording an EP.
So like I said, it was done in the summer. And I wrote it with my manager, friends, producers and songwriters. Some of the songs were quite challenging to write, some of them took longer than others, some of them came from the heart and from personal experiences. Some of them we just wrote because we thought it was a cool concept.
Where did you find inspiration for the EP?
We just kind of liked to be creative. We weren’t inspired by anything, we were inspired from everything. That was deep. (laughs)
What is the story behind the track “Personal”?
The story is about a young kid that’s in high school, and he’s dating the girl of his dreams. One of the popular kids steals her and she basically cheats on him and he’s left heartbroken. That’s the story. Yeah, it’s sad.
How did music video for “Personal” come about?
It came about really quick actually. I did not realize that music videos kind of come together. It happened in the span of the week. It was a long day, we finished quite late. I loved it because it was the first time I ever danced.
Describe your music in three words.
I did this question before, and I really messed it up, so I’ve got to think about it. My music is fun, I feel like it’s fun. It is pop, and it’s from the heart.
Are you currently working on any other music?
Yeah, I’m always working on music. My goal for 2018 is to write and record as much as music and then eventually release it.
What is your favorite part of performing?
My favorite part of performing is meeting fans, being able to sing to my fans. I see so many fans online and supporters singing back my songs and doing covers, so it’s nice to sing it live and see these faces in person.
Do you have any pre-show rituals?
Not really. I just drink loads and loads of water. So before every show I have to go for a wee every time. So that’s kind of my ritual.
If you could perform at any venue in the world. Which one would you choose?
There’s two. Madison Square Garden because it’s massively famous and it’s in America. Then The O2 in London. I have performed at The O2 before, but it was supporting Little Mix. So, I’d like to have my own show.
Who would you most like to open for?
Justin Timberlake. That’d be dope.
You are one of the UK’s leading social media stars. What is your favorite platform?
Instagram because I love photography and the following closely behind probably, Twitter.
I learn a lot from people online.
How is being on social media affected your music?
It has helped me out alot actually. I see a lot of comments and constructive criticism. I learn a lot from people online.
What has being on social media taught you?
To be kind to others.
What is the weirdest thing a fan has ever done for you?
There hasn’t really been any weird experiences. They bake me stuff like brownies and cookies. They bring me a lot of food, so it’s not really weird, it’s actually very nice. No weird experiences, yet.
What would be the theme song to your life?
I mean, my manager like to say I look like Bart Simpson. So I suppose like the Simpson’s theme tune.
What’s next for you?
Everything! Studio, writing music, music videos, meeting people, doing shows, interviews! Loads of things, excited for it all.
PHOTOS DERRICK FRESKE
STORY MEGHANA PATNANA
ASSISTANT EMILY ZEMPEL