EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Sena Kana Talks Japanese Proverbs, ‘Show Me,’ Collabs, And More!

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Sena Kana Talks Japanese Proverbs, ‘Show Me,’ Collabs, And More!

Are you in the mood for some amazing music and vocals by an even more beautiful human being? Want to throw in some Japanese influences? Then you are at the right address. Sena Kana is a Japanese singer we have completely fallen head over heels for! Her music reaches a stratosphere we haven’t experienced before, she truly mastered the art of mixing pop, electronic, and classical sonics elements aka crossing and combining all genres, especially on her newest single ‘Show Me.’

Image Source: Giphy

But that’s not all the singer is trying to spread a beautiful message all around the world of unity and hope. This really comes across in her music so well. And she doesn’t stop here! This queen has been making history already, hitting gold status in the US as the first Japanese artist! Yes, gurl you deserve it and so much more. Obviously, We just couldn’t help but stan this all-over beautiful human being. We aren’t the only ones though, as she has already collaborated with big names in the industry! So, if you haven’t yet we recommend you check out her music immediately.

But maybe hold on one more second! We got the chance to talk to the rising star all about her music, what it was like working with Wiz Khalifa, and she teaches us her favorite Japanese proverb. Want more? Keep scrolling! 🥰

The influence of classical music can really be felt in your music especially in songs like ‘Your Eyes,’ and we know that’s how you first fell in love with music, how important is it for you to stick to those roots and let it influence your work?
My current image as an artist is rooted in the music, movies, musicals, and other things I have been exposed to. Rather than putting only my roots into my work, I feel that these elements naturally emerge as I release new music and partner with new artists.

One of the lines in your song ‘Show Me’ is “Late nights in bed when you feel lonely,” we deeply relate to this. What do you do when you feel lonely at night? What’s your go-to song during lonely nights?
When I feel lonely at night, I try to look up at the stars, feel the clean air, and stay calm. Listening to music is also good, but since I am a singer, I can’t help but concentrate deeply on the music and then get excited, which makes it hard for me to fall asleep.

‘Show Me’ is the second of your singles featuring a rapper, is there any other rapper you would be interested in working with? And outside of rappers, is there anyone you would love to collaborate with?
With ‘Up’ and ‘Show Me,’ I worked with Wiz and Ty$ because I thought their voices and style would be a good match for both songs. I think there are a lot of talented artists out there, but I would really love to collaborate with The Weeknd, Shawn Mendes, or Justin Bieber.

Image Source: Shuya Nakano.

We know releasing an EP is much different from releasing a single and it’s already been a year since your debut EP Serenity. How did the journey of releasing the EP help you grow as an artist? How much has changed since the release of Serenity
Every time I create a song, I gain something and feel like I’m growing. I was working on my last project, Serenity when the pandemic broke out. At that time, things that had been typical were no longer the norm, and new standards were created. Recording remotely was one of them. I was also unable to have concerts and was restricted in many ways, but I still tried to at least sing every day, as usual, and am grateful for that opportunity.

Your music really breaks boundaries between styles, genres, and cultures, is that something you always wanted to do with your music or was it something that came naturally to you?
Thank you very much. As you said, I don’t think my music can be categorized into any one genre or style. I think my sound was formed in a natural way due to my various interests and my current style is the result of absorbing all different kinds of music and art throughout my life.

All of your songs have been predominantly in English so far. Will we be hearing you sing in Japanese any time soon? Are you going to remake one of your already released songs into Japanese?
Such a thing may happen in the near future, but we don’t have any plans for that at this point.

Image Source: Shuya Nakano.

From your debut until now, has your approach to your music changed? How has the pandemic influenced your way of making music and your songwriting?
The pandemic affected not only the music industry but also everything else in the world. It is important to adapt to new standards as they emerge. In terms of songwriting, one of the biggest changes in the process that influenced my work was remote recording while I was in Japan and my collaborators in the US.

‘Up’ is an absolute jam and our mood is “rising up like helium” every time we listen to it and Wiz Khalifa and Sheppard are such cool additions to the song. What was it like working with the two? Any funny stories?
Working with Wiz Khalifa and Sheppard was great! Both of them brought a unique sound to ‘Up’ and I think that’s what made it so special, especially internationally since they are artists from different sides of the world. It’s a great song and the culmination of a wonderful collaboration between different genres and backgrounds.

Since you alternate between Tokyo and New York, what’s the biggest difference between the two places? What do you miss about the cities the most when you aren’t there?
New York and Tokyo are both sources of the new culture, fashion, and art. While there are many similarities between the two cities, I feel that the major difference is that New York is an environment where individuality is more important. In Tokyo, trends are often imitated by many people, but in New York, while there are trends, I feel that each person displays their own individual style without the influence of what’s trending and is completely authentic to themselves.

Your music truly feels like an experience that can be felt throughout the entire body. We felt this way the most while listening to ‘Undisputed.’ What was the inspiration behind the song? 
Thank you! ‘Undisputed’ has been one of my favorites since the session when Poo Bear wrote it for me. The main message of the song is the feeling of being in deep water and desperately seeking the light of the “Warrior.”

Scrolling through your Instagram we noticed you totally nail the classy style! What’s your favorite way to dress? Any new fashion trends you’d love to try?
I like monotone colors such as gray, black, and white, but I would like to try bright colors, incorporating the recent Y2K trend. During the pandemic, I felt that a lot of people were sad, but I think that the recent fashion trends give people power, color, and happiness. I feel that a bright outfit, even if it is just a small change, gives everyone joy.

Japanese is a beautiful language and it has so many idioms. Is there a saying you’d love people to associate with your music and why? 
There is a Japanese proverb that says, “Good fortune comes to a laughing gate.” Even if you are facing difficulties, when you look forward as much as you can and try your best to smile, you will surely see the light. I think it would be wonderful if people all over the world could feel hope in this way. I think it would bring the world closer to peace. In my case, though, it may be “good fortune comes to those who sing!”

Image Source: Shuya Nakano.

We are big musical lovers here at THP and we heard you grew up loving The Sound Of Music, so did we! Are there any new musicals you are obsessed with?
I love jukebox musicals like Mamma Mia, and I love colorful musicals set in the 1960s like Hairspray and Producers. I think Chicago is a masterpiece that has been brought to life not only on stage but also on film.

There is so much to fangirl about here we don’t know where to start! Is the beautiful proverb she shared? Her wanting to try Y2K fashion – which we think Sena Kana would totally ace – or is it her wanting to collab with these major artists? We don’t know but we are going through it!

What did you think about our interview with Sena Kana? What’s your favorite song by her? Who would you love to see her collaborate with next? Let us know on Twitter @TheHoneyPOP or by commenting below! You can also find us on Instagram and Facebook.

Craving more sweet interviews? We’ve got what you need! 

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT SENA KANA:
FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | WEBSITE | YOUTUBE

Featured Image Source: Shuya Nakano. Edited by: Emily Defoor – THP Graphic Design Team

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