Sebastian Mikael
Last Night feat. Wale (Produced by Lamb and Bigg D)

Swedish/Ethiopian singer-songwriter Sebastian Mikael has been on the come-up for awhile now. The Gothenburg native hit the States with a dream to make it big in the music industry. He is classically trained by the Berklee College of Music in Boston, and one of the first Swedish bred R&B singers to make it onto the US charts. With his latest single, “Last Night” featuring Wale, he blends a flavor of the old (Al B. Sure sample) and new with some contemporary sounds. While on his promo tour across the country, the rising star was able to take a moment to speak with TMN about the success in his life, inspirations, who he would like to work with in the future, and more.

TMN: First off, I want to congratulate you on the success of your latest single “Last Night” featuring Wale. The song is very catchy and the AL. B. Sure sample keeps fans old and new hip. Do you draw a lot of inspiration from older generation artists?

SM: Definitely, a lot of music comes from inspiration of older acts. I like Marvin Gaye, Sade, and other old soul artists. I like to make music with a throwback feel. I just have a big love for old school.

TMN: Getting on a track with Wale for one of your first singles had to be pretty humbling. Could you explain a little bit more about how that collaboration came about?

SM: Made the first track in Miami. We first got the sample and thought it was ill so we ended up cutting it that day. Wale heard the song and about 7 hours later he provided the verse.

TMN: Who else do you want to work with or collaborate with in in the future?

SM: Oh yeah many other artists. Um, right now it would be great to collaborate with Drake. We have been listening to his new album (Nothing Was the Same) a lot lately. J. Cole is another one I would really like to work with. Alicia Keys would be great too.

TMN: I know you were born and raised in Sweden, could you tell me more about the music scene back home and any changes that you had to adjust to when coming to America?

SM: Back home there is a lot of pop music and dance. It’s not very common for R&B singers to make it big there. I was just fortunate enough to get that exposure from my parents. They would listen to a lot of different stuff like R&B, soul, reggae, and music from other greats. So growing up, I knew I wanted to create music very similar to that. It’s just that over in America, the market is so much bigger for that.

TMN: So is that what made you venture into the music scene and into R&B?

SM: Yeah. It was my first love for music. In high school, you know, I started to sing more, produce more, write more. Then after high school, I explored more and definitely wanted to move over here (America) to do more of the music I love.

TMN: A couple of your songs sound very passionate and heartfelt, do you draw a lot of inspiration from real life experiences?

SM: Oh, yea absolutely. Every song that I write is something personal or something that I have gone through in the past.  Always honest and open.

TMN: So, would you say that you have songs that mean the most to you and why?

SM: Yeah, “Beautiful Life” is one that still relates to a lot of people. Honest song that I wasn’t sure I was going to release. “Over the Limit” is definitely another one that I really enjoy and, of course, “Last Night”.

TMN: What are some of the high points of this journey towards stardom and what are some of the low points that you have faced?

SM: To be honest man, I would say being on the road so far has been a lot of fun. We’ve been doing a promo tour lately and it’s just been so many blessings and amazing things happening, you know what I mean. Connecting with fans and meeting new people. I’m just the type of person to really focus on the positive things in life. The negative or downside would be getting sick or getting a cold. One thing that can be kind of frustrating though, but not really a low point, is being a new artist you gotta work with a team and make sure the timing is right before you drop new material when you want to. Those are just some of the things you gotta deal with but you just gotta go with it, you know.

TMN: Alright so just to move onto some fun questions, name a couple songs that are your favorite thing to listen to or in heavy rotation on your playlist.

SM: Um, definitely that “Too Much” by Drake is ill. I’m really feeling that one right now. Let me think, hmm, I’ve been listening to a lot of Coldplay. Some of their classic albums I have really been getting into. That new Drake album is really dope too. I love the production on that album and he has been through a lot. It’s really a good listen. I think it’s one of those albums that grows on people.

TMN: So what’s kind of the funniest/weirdest thing that has happened to you since being on the road?

SM: Oh haha, man. A lot of fun things happen when we go out but, dont take this the wrong way, but I definitely don’t remember (in detail) everything and I don’t want to mess up the whole story. I would say that North Carolina was pretty crazy. Haha it was pretty wild out there. I dont know if I want to talk in detail about everything but we had a lot of fun out there. One thing was, I remember I was doing an acoustic performance at a club in Alabama. It wasn’t really planned but it was so fun. I mean, the girls loved it but the dude’s hated it haha.

TMN: Favorite Swedish food and favorite American food?

SM: I wouldn’t really say its my favorite but I really like soul food. The only thing about soul food is you can’t eat it all the time. I’m really starting to like Ethiopian and Ghanian food. Oh man its so good. This one Ethiopian dish called garam and this one Ghanian dish fufu are dope. You gotta try em.

TMN: So what’s a guilty pleasure that many people may not know that you have?

SM: On the road, I wish I could be better but I have a love for junk food. I would say that Popeyes chicken is probably one of my favorite spots to eat at, so definitely a guilty pleasure and addiction.

TMN: If you had to choose any other profession other than music, what would it be and why?

SM: It would have to be something that had to do with art. I have always been creative, so something that had to do with painting and the arts. I’d say some of my favorite painters are Salvador Dali and Banksy.

Special thanks goes out to the talented Sebastian Mikael for taking the time to speak with us. He is currently continuing his promotional tour but fans can hear more from him as his latest single “Last Night,” climbs the charts. Be sure to stay tuned to the site to hear more from the rising star.

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