Our next interview features Danish singer and songwritter Nicklas Sonne from Copenhagen!

Nicklas Sonne is a new name to the Dansk Melodi Grand Prix line-up, and will be lighting up the stage with his rock song “Freedom”. His love of music started at just 8 years old when he went to an Alice Cooper concert and fell in love with the sound of the drumset. From there he would go on to learn guitar, and would start “recording” music for the first time on the Playstation 2 game “MTV Music Generator” making covers of popular songs. Now many years later he has his own studio where he produces his own music.

Welcome to ESCUnited.com Nicklas, thanks for making some time to speak with us today ahead of Dansk Melodi Grand Prix finals! How have you been since the artist and song announcement was made?

Hey guys, thanks for taking the time to chat with me. I’ve been great, thank you, lots of interesting and exciting things are happening and my music is starting to get even more out there than before, and people really seem to enjoy my song ‘Freedom’, so that’s absolutely fantastic!

How would you describe your music and sound to our readers? Are there any artists that influence or inspire you as a musician?

I have many inspirations, but I really think that with time, I’ve developed my own sound while still being able to be influenced. I’ve always loved bands such as Alice Cooper, Metallica, Dream Theater, Symphony X, Judas Priest in the rock/metal genre, but also Adele, Ed Sheeran, Backstreet Boys. For me it’s about the melody and the feeling I get when I listen to a song. Something I’m also often inspired by is game and film music, I love the big symphonic arrangements and often create similar classical influenced arrangements in my songs when it makes sense in context.

I would describe my music as espresso with rainbow sprinkles on top – heavy and with a great attitude, but still melodic and catchy – to me, it’s the best of both worlds.

Alright, let’s do some fast questions to help our readers get to know you better! If you had the option to collaborate with any Eurovision artist of your choosing on a new single, who would you choose to work with and why?

I don’t know, sorry, I simply don’t know all the artists well enough to be sure which to choose.

What is one thing that our readers would be surprised to learn about you?

I have written, produced, recorded all instruments, mixed and mastered Freedom all by myself in my studio, where I also do songwriting and mixing sessions with other bands as a my day job.

You have a ton of experience touring Europe and performing at concerts and festivals as well. Reflecting on all of these experiences, what was your most memorable stage performance in your career so far and why?

My most memorable experience was when I supported Metallica with my band, back in 2017. Metallica are my childhood heroes, so to open for them in a huge arena, was probably the biggest dream ever to come true. 

Was your song “Freedom” written with Dansk Melodi Grand Prix in mind, or was it a song you’d be holding on to and decided “hey why not send it in?”

As I finished production on my solo album I remembered I was contacted back in 2019 by the people choosing the contesters for DMGP. I was contacted because they’ve heard my voice and my music, I don’t really know from where, and asked me if I wanted to enter with a rock song. At that time I didn’t work as a solo artist, and the band democratically decided not to do anything further. With my solo album almost done, I send in a couple of songs and asked “isn’t it about time DMGP grew some more balls and had some ROCK” haha, what a way to break the ice, but hey, it worked, and they loved the songs, especially one of them.

That song is called “All Thanks to You” and is on my solo album ‘Resonance’ which was released November 2022. The album had just been released when I went to the meeting about DMGP, and then I realized I couldn’t use that song, because it was released. I should’ve known. Because of the time frame it was actually too late to enter with a new song, but I went home that day and wrote ‘Freedom’ and sent it in the same evening, and it was instantly loved and welcomed. You could say that it is the most intuitive song I’ve ever written.

What would you say has been the most fulfilling part of the selection process for you as an artist so far? 

Definitely that I was chosen with a song that is true to what I am.

Now you are a live instrumentalist and a singer, and I know that Denmark is a country that allows live instrumentals on stage during the national final, although Eurovision does not. Especially with a rock song, do you think this can give your DMGP performance more energy and drama live on stage?

Yes definitely, and we are indeed going to play live. We’re joining as a group of 4 friends who love to play hardrock on stage, and I wanna deliver that experience to the audience. 

For those who want to connect with you ahead of or after the selection– where can they find you and your music?

My music is available on almost all streaming services and it’s possible to order a vinyl directly from me through my homepage www.nicklassonne.com.
I’m also active on social media:
www.facebook.com/nicklassonnemusic
www.instagram.com/nicklas.sonne
www.youtube.com/nicklassonne

In closing, do you have a final message you’d like to share with the readers of ESCUnited?

I had a hard time growing up. I was bullied from beginning to the end of school and my family was plagued by divorce and hardship. The result was that my self-esteem was non-existent, I didn’t believe in myself, and I didn’t think I’d ever do anything important although the dreams were definitely present. I found something I was passionate about – music and creativity in the world of instruments. When I learnt to play for example guitar, or began writing songs to get my thoughts out from the inside and down on paper, I found a way to escape the reality in which I didn’t thrive. I used this “alternate universe” to overcome the darkness within and to ascend from a chasm of bleakness. I got good at playing various instruments and better and better at writing and composing songs, through dedication to what I was passionate about.

People can try to talk you out of flying for your dreams, or convince you that you don’t have what it takes. In the end it’s these people themselves that don’t have what it takes, and in your ONE life, you should GO for that dream. Take the leap. If you really want something, don’t end up old and gray just to regret you didn’t give it a try. YOU can do it. YOU can achieve it, and you can learn to believe in yourself. It’s hard and takes time, but don’t lose hope. This is also what my song ‘Freedom’ is about. 

Nicklas Sonne will compete against seven other artists in Dansk Melodi Grand Prix on February 11th, where the winner will be decided by a split jury and public voting structure. The winner of the national final will go on to represent Denmark at the Eurovision Song Contest in Liverpool this coming May. 

Are #YOU team Nicklas for Denmark? Let us know on social media @ESCUnited, on our discord, or on our forum page!

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