Q&A's

Q&A with miQa.El

 

“Country must be country wide” might be a title to a popular country song, but its sentiment rings true as country music’s expansion across the states and overseas continues to blossom. One such place that country music’s growth spurt is hitting overseas is Sweden, which is where we find miQa.El. The singer/songwriter, widely recognized by his retired persona HICKS, has been making an impact with his new music throughout 2022. We had an awesome opportunity to check in with him and talk about his latest singles “Walking Medicine” and “99 Guns,” his music finding placement on television shows The Goldbergs and Being Erica, his more transparently honest approach to songwriting, and much more!

(Interview by: Jeffrey Kurtis

 

1) Tell us about your newest single  “Walking Medicine.”

Play It Loud!!! Hahahaha… No seriously… Walking Medicine is a song about being the best version of ourselves. Go deep inside and find the truest essence of who we are. Love a little deeper… Breathe a little deeper… be really connected with our hearts… Take more responsibility with our health.

We were born amazing, and we are meant to stay amazing through our whole life. I know, we fall, we get hurt, bad things happen and that’s ok. Feel the emotions but don’t become the emotions…

Have a little faith… lean back in the arms of God, Universe, Creator or whatever you like to call it…

Maybe the song is walking medicine, not just a title…

 

WALKING MEDICINE

(Miqael Persson/© KashKow Music)

 

Deep in my soul I am your brother

Deep in my heart I am your man

I can’t steal you from another

Trust and follow lifes plan

 

With you I want to reach much higher

With you I fall in love with me

Way beyond burning desire

Love don’t come with guaranties

 

Walking Medicine

Walking Medicine

I surrender here tonight

I’m givin’ in I’m givin’ up without a fight

You and me

Walking Medicine

 

I saw the light there in the distant

I hear a voice inside of me

I give away all my resistance

Sometimes it’s better just to breath

 

I don’t need to walk beside you

But it’s where I rather be

It’s a spiritual I do

Love supposed to set us free

Chorus:

2) The song has already found immediate success, rising up the charts in UK since its release. Why do you think it’s resonating so much so quickly?

I don’t really know, but I hope that people can feel that the song comes from an honest place. I mean every word I sing. In this crazy world we live in I think we need hope, healing, and a lot of love. Hopefully that is something people can relate to in the song. And I am also so grateful for all the great reviews and that it’s climbing the charts. AMAZING!!!

3) “Walking Medicine” follows your debut single (under this artist name) “99 guns.” Tell us a bit more about that song and the depth of its very poignant lyrics.

“99 Guns” deals with the very infected issue about guns. I am not against guns. There has never been a gun in the history of time that woke up one morning and decided that “today I’m gonna kill somebody.”

That’s always humans who do that. The same kind of humans who use planes, cars, knifes whatever to hurt and kill other people. But somehow, some say we need to ban guns. I don’t think so, then we must ban planes, cars and whatever is used in killing and hurting. In my opinion we need to educate people that we are all connected. There is only one race - the human race. There is no reward in the afterlife for killing other human beings. Love is our true essence. I think it’s really sad and childish that we think that conflicts must be solved with violence. “99 Guns” doesn’t give any answers but asks a lot of questions.

4) Are these 2 songs part of a planned bigger project that’s coming down the road or are they each stand- alone singles for the time being?

Right now, they are stand-alone singles, but I’m writing a lot of new songs. I feel very inspired. Right now, the songs are just pouring out of me. So maybe it will lead to an album or maybe just more singles.

I go with the flow, what feels right.

5) You recently had a song appear on the popular television show The Goldbergs. How did that all come about, and which episode was it played on so our readers can go back and check it out?

That is all thanks to my manager Michael Stover at MTS Management. He is connected to those guys at the show, and they needed a song and we had it. He sent it over and they liked it. The episode was aired on November 2nd; the episode is called “Rhinestones And Roses.” Michael also helped me to get another song on the TV show Being Erica. He’s a hard worker.

6) It’s been said in prior interviews that this is a whole new direction for you, your songwriting, and your music. In what types of ways do you feel that’s true?

I’ve done a lot of soul searching; been digging real deep. Finding the true essence of who I am. That’s one of the reasons that I decided to retire Hicks, and just be miQa.El. (Even if I spell it funny)

I went through a divorce two years ago, and that stuff changes you. No matter if you’re the one who’s leaving or the on being left. It changes you.

I think there’s more depth to my music and lyrics these days. Some songs have been very therapeutic to write and a few of those will never be heard by anybody, but I needed to write them at the time to get stuff off my chest. When you sing those songs a couple of months or years later after you wrote them you realize “Oh I don’t feel like that anymore.” I think I’m more honest in my writing today.

7) We said earlier that these songs were the first under this artist name. You’re widely recognized by longtime persona, HICKS, which you had just mentioned is retired. Are there some of the signature feels retained between this new music and what we’ve heard from you in the past?

Well, I sing the way I do, and I have my “sound.” There’s always a country vibe to everything I write, but I think these new songs have a little more after thought… a little more depth… But then again, I’ve written some really cool party songs as well. The Hicks stuff was produced by Erik Martensson from the band Eclipse and the new songs are produced by Andreas Rydman. So, there is of course a little different sound and feel to them.

8) You’re from Sweden. What’s the country music scene like in Sweden versus what we know here in the states?

It’s really good and getting better. More and more venues are popping up. I played an Americana/Country festival right out in the sticks in small placed called Tiveden here in Sweden. There were artists from US, Australia, UK, Germany, and Sweden. It was great fun.

I was back in my hometown Helsingborg and did a street concert. Now that was a blast. Packed with people and the crowd filmed when I played “Walking Medicine” and we used some of that for the video. Really cool!

We are starting to get more country music on the radio as well. So, it’s slowly growing. I do what I can to spread the gospel of country music.

9) You list a lot of today’s stateside country music acts as your influences: Tim McGraw, Old Dominion, Little Big Town, Toby Keith… to name a few. What is it about their music that made you first fall in love with country, and what takeaways do you get from them that you try to incorporate uniquely into your own music today?

What they all have in common is great singing and songwriting. I love the humor in some of Toby Keith’s songs. Even Old Dominion has some really funny lyrics. I’ve seen both Tim McGraw and Little Big Town live and holy ---- they deliver. I think they were even greater live than on record.

When I listen to music, I always look for honesty. Whether it’s a love song or a funny song…the artist has to mean it and not just sing it. That is one of the things I love about country music when it comes from a real place. What I get from them is the honesty. And that you can write a song about almost anything.

10) What one piece of advice can you offer to someone who is just starting out and trying to break into the music industry?

I‘ve talked a lot about it already… Honesty.  Be true to yourself. Write from your heart. Write what you know. If you can, write every day. Work on your craft. Go to see other artists. Listen to songs… I mean really listen to songs. Write by yourself and write with others. And most of all have fun… Don’t be afraid to experiment. Find your own sound. Be inspired but find your own sound.

 

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