In the digital age of music, a time when listeners are given quicker access to music and new artists, we have come to expect an ever present connection with all our favorite artists. With millions of artists releasing music digitally every day, Swedish rapper Adam Tensta has found a new way of connecting to his international fan base in his Pass It On app, a Facebook application which is transforming the listening experience. Users sign up for the application, then wait in a “digital queue” for their turn to hear a very special song written and recorded by Tensta. The catch? One only user is allowed to listen to the song at a time. An email notification sent out when you’re up gives you one hour to listen, and an online map shows you where the song is currently being played. Be sure to listen closely when you finally do reach the front of the line–if the growing popularity of this meme means your first listen could very well be the last.
TL: Adam…how did you get started making music?
AT: I wanted to become a better rapper than my friends, who where light years better than me. That, and the fact that I felt that I had a story to convey to the world is what got me doing this music shit.
TL: How would you describe your music to someone who hasn’t heard it? Influences?
AT: Well to describe it with a few words is impossible, it’s music, stories, dreams, hardships and joy all put together into one. A pot of boiling mixtures of emotions for every new song and every new chapter of my travels. I draw influence from just about everything, the more minute and detailed the experience is, the more vivid my painting becomes. I´m influenced by hip hop, house, punk, techno as well as pop music. Everything i´ve grown up listening to finds place in my music today, as the stories I´ve taken part of. My records are not alike. If they don´t make you dance, they will make you think about what i said in a particular line or both combined. No borders in that.
TL: What made you decide to do a “pass it on” song/app? To connect to the audience digitally/more intimately?
AT: I wanted to mess around with the term and the feeling of “exclusivity”. So I linked up with Rasmus Keger in NYC who hatched the idea. Other than not releasing music at all, the most exclusive experience, is to share a song with one person at a time. So that’s what we decided to do. The one copy song. A song that anyone in the world could listen to, but only once, and only one person at a time. The song is still getting passed along across the world, and thus far I think it’s been to more countries that I have.
TL: Is the song made to be listened to once? Do you plan on releasing widely at some point? With an album?
AT: I love the concept. It´s like back in the days when you queued for your favourite artist´s new album. And it gets much more interesting when we add the “skip the line” features. We´ll see if we can stretch this concept further for a album release. We would have to come up with some new features for that as well.
But I will never put this song out for download or even play it live. I want to keep just the way it is, intimate.
TL: Tell us a little bit about your website. Have you curated everything on it?
AT: Well, on adamtensta.com you can of course get all the obvious info and links to my current and previous work. But other than that, my website is a platform for me to share some of the experiences we’ve had whilst traveling the world. Luckily, I often have a team there to document all the crazy, odd and fantastic moments we run into. Those moments are the real gems of the website, and yes they’re curated by me.
TL: Any upcoming collaborations? If not, who would you love to collaborate with?
AT: I have plenty of up coming collaborations and releases in the pipe line, but you know how it is, if you talk about them too much, you jinx the whole shit, so I’d rather just not talk about it at all. Without naming names, let’s just say I have loads of unreleased songs.
Other than that I’d like to collaborate with Hologram Tupac.
Look for Adam’s upcoming album in late 2012.