Hiroki – Tell Me (When You’re Gone) [Interview]

Describe your sound in 3 words

Smooth, Silky, Soulful

Can you describe the personal experience that led to the creation of Tell Me (When You’re Gone)?

When I was in high school, I fell in love with my best friend. Immediately after graduation, I faced a choice to move out of the small town I lived in, and pursue music in a larger metropolitan area. The person this song was written about ended up getting married, and then divorced. Every time I’d go back to visit, we’d always hang out like no time had passed. Because I’m a loveable idiot, my feelings for her would get reignited. I could tell that she felt similarly, but of course, I would have to eventually leave again. We’ve obviously seen other people over the years, but here we are 17 years later still stuck in this dance. This last holiday season, I went back to visit again, but this time, she said she had gotten back with her ex. That hurt, and so I returned home and wrote this song in like 30 minutes. If you’ve ever had a “one that got away” situation, this song is definitely for you. Side note, she’s not with her ex anymore and we’ve been talking a bunch. Timing is a weird thing. Wouldn’t it be wild if it ever worked out?

How did you develop the classic R&B sound and sexy vibe in the production?

Well it started with the hook and some guitar. Always the hook first 🙂 It already seemed to have that classic sound embedded into it. Since that’s what we felt the song wanted to be, we added bass and drums to it which really made it juicy. After that, it’s just a matter of some well placed keys for padding, vocal layers for texture, a couple of sweet guitar solos, and maximum effort mixing out of a home studio. And whiskey.

Which is your most personal and honest lyric?

Probably the beginning of the chorus. ”Tell me how do I forget this feeling when you’re gone? It always seems like dancing in the evening silence all alone.” or that bit in the first verse, “When you’re around it’s like I’ve found my meaning.”
Soulmate status you know?

What is the biggest challenge you have faced as an artist so far?

That’s easy, being Asian! Just kidding! The biggest challenge has probably been, honestly, getting more people to hear our music. We put so much into crafting each of our songs that we get burned out by the time the release rolls around. I’m sure thousands of artists can relate.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Get on things like Vine and TikTok sooner, haha! And I’d probably tell myself to start singing sooner to truly express myself.

What do you hope listeners take away from this song?

Love might not always work out the way that you hoped it would, but love is still a beautiful thing. We’re so lucky to be able to feel all the feelings that we do as human beings. Even if something hurts, it’s okay to feel that. Hopefully it’ll give you more appreciation for when things go well and are feeling good.

Thank you!

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