KiKi NAM NAM – the album 2019
Kiki Nam Nam was adopted as a baby by a Swiss family from an orphanage in Mumbai. Despite growing up in the Canton of Basel-Landschaft in Switzerland, she never completely lost sight of her Indian roots.
Even though the KiKi NAM NAM album has been preproduced by Phil Merk and Baschi at the Swiss Rebel-Inc. Studio and subsequently recorded at the legendary Blackbird Studio in Nashville, Tennessee, it is easy to distinguish recurrent Indian musical sounds underlying the country, bluegrass and rock elements of these catchy pop songs. Kiki Nam Nam’s choice of this unique cultural mix has enabled her to create her own unmistakable musical style.
The artist is an extremely precise observer of current social developments, but without ever compromising her keen sense of what is memorable in pop tunes with catchy hooks. Apart from a song composed together with two song writer friends at the SUISA Songwriting Camp 18 (“The Jungle“) and “What if“ (just by herself), all of the impressive often heartrending portrayals of human states of emotion, were penned by Kiki Nam Nam with Phil Merk and Baschi as co-writers.
In keeping with the traditional story-narrating, the songs (Chasing Butterflies, No Crown, Perfect Day, Hold your Hand, Friends, Don’t Steal my Man and Oooops?!?) reflect not only current issues such as all-pervading selfie mania (in the song Selfie), but also frequently depict strong women, who can be compared to tigers with their indomitability und unswerving manner and who can be perceived as the actual rulers of life in the modern jungle (songs: Can’t be Tamed and The Jungle).
Last but not least, issues like widespread stereotypes and prejudices such as marginalization resulting from a different skin colour (song: What if, a duet with Mr. Currey Singh) are also being addressed in the wonderful new KiKi NAM NAM album.
The first single „Selfie“ was published together with a video clip on January 25th, 2019. The KiKi NAM NAM album will be available in music stores as from 17th May, 2019; pre-orders can be made on iTunes as from 22nd March, 2019.
When I was about 15 years old, one of my best friends gave me a CD as a present. It was a James Taylor CD, and it was a revelation! ‘Carolina in my mind’ is my favourite James Taylor song. It was around this time that I discovered the Dixie Chicks and their song ‘Cowboy Take Me Away’. It just touched me. The melodies, the stories, the harmonies, the sound of the steel guitar. And although it took me a long time to arrive at this point, I finally realised that (leaving my Indian appearance aside), this is basically the kind of music that I want to make.
To gain some experience and earn a little money, I set up a cover band. After a number of happy coincidences, we ended up as the house band at the Grand Hotel ‘Les Trois Rois’ in Basel. In general, it was my privilege to always get well-paid gala performances and to perform in a very pleasant atmosphere. But as lovely as these performances were, I always thought: ‘this isn’t quite right; this is not the real deal; when am I going to be able to perform my own songs.’
So I took the money I had earned at these gigs and put together a team of professionals that was willing to write and produce songs with me. And I knew for certain: it had to be in the Country/Pop style. And so I ended up with Baschi and his producer Phil Merk (Rebel inc.). The reason they wanted to work with me was because they were curious about the fact that I wanted to move in the direction of Country/Pop. So, we started writing songs. I brought the finished song texts and, in some cases, the music too. We did the rest together. And it worked. Just like that. Together, the three of us composed ten catchy pop songs. It was easy: there were no blackouts, crises, creative blocks or anything like that. It just worked, straight from the word go (… even if the final demos didn’t have much to do with ‘Country’).
I listened to so much country music that I realised that I would never really get the country touch I was looking for in Switzerland. There were no two ways about it: I had to go to Nashville, Tennessee. But where was the money supposed to come from???
So I set up my own fund-raising model and set out in June 2017 to find some investors who were willing to invest in my career. In return, investors will get a share of the income generated by activities related to my album. Thanks to a few good contacts and recommendations, I was lucky to be put in touch with the right people in Nashville and was able to give confirmation to a number of renowned producers, musicians, studios, etc. in June/July 2017. At this point in time, I had just enough money to pay for the flight. Nevertheless, it all worked out and in early October 2017, I flew alone to America to record a full album of eleven songs.
The fact that Country/Pop delights a massive and diverse audience of music fans around the world is illustrated by the success of many international superstars around the world. So, audiences are definitely open to more music in this genre.
It took me a very long time to get this album recorded. But when I look at the result, all of these twists and turns in my career were necessary and worthwhile, because they helped me get to where I am today. I gathered a professional team around me and found my own unmistakeable style, which I think is unique in this form: in short, I make ‘spicy Country/Pop’. In other words, I make Country/Pop with an Indian touch. It’s a whole new world! Country-Pop-Indian sounds??? Yes sir!
Kiki Nam Nam 2019