kin promo
Every Event in Our Storyline Has a Purpose
publishing date September 2, 2012
interviewer Alex Yau
publisher DIY
photography iamamiwhoami: John Strandh
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Every Event in Our Storyline Has a Purpose

Notion: What Can You Do with Nothing? «


In 2009 various bloggers received an anonymous YouTube video titled ‘Prelude 699130082.451322-’ Soundtracked by ambient electronica, it’s the first of six ‘Prelude’ videos, each prominently featuring the same enigmatic blonde woman. Who was she? Guesses ranged from Lady Gaga to Christina Aguilera but this enchantress was unveiled as Swedish singer-songwriter Jonna Lee who, partnered with producer Claes Björklund, was reinventing herself as iamamiwhoami.

Myths and emblems enchant all of Lee’s work. The ‘Prelude’ videos focus heavily of the mandragora officinarium myth where the semen of a hanged man apparently produces hallucinatory roots. Animals feature prominently in the following ‘bounty’ series and in the videos for her recent debut LP ‘kin’, Lee saunters around differing landscapes with giant, yeti-like figures. Lee’s reluctant to reveal much about her own messages in the videos, stressing that they would only create barriers: “I leave my detailed motives out as not to narrow the interpretations of the listeners and viewers,” she explains. “It’s a journey of the project in real time and ‘kin’ portrays different battles in its own making.”

Lee holds MTV and BBC 6 Music Awards for her innovative online presence but, with her identity revealed, does she fear people will lose interest? She says: “I guess people have different motives for why they follow iamamiwhoami. I think the whom in the equation has only been interesting considering who I am as an artist out of the audience perspective.”

kin’ is already available to buy digitally and its videos have been online for months now but it’s only just being released physically this September. Clearly Lee places tremendous amounts of thought into her music’s visuals but ‘kin’’s physical release shows the strength of her songs once the bewitching images are stripped away. It’s a collection of glacial electropop (think Björk, the Knife and Fever Ray) that starkly contrasts with the alt-pop of Lee’s earliest work. She describes these tracks as separate entities that she has nurtured into something huge. “At the core I’m a musician, and the growth of ‘kin’ has developed into something that can stand on its own legs – musically, visually and as a whole”, she says.

Lee never takes a break when dedicating herself to these ‘separate entities.’ She immediately began crafting ‘kin’ after the ‘bounty’ series and, despite being a “massive drain on funds and time,” it was hugely successful. Will she release her next project similarly to conjure the same success? “I think there is a lot of effort put into trying,” she says. “What remains essential is still the content, not the delivery method. I don’t believe in over articulation. I believe in the capacity of the audience as individuals.” Unsurprisingly Lee doesn’t reveal much more about her upcoming project which she is currently living as we speak. “Every event in our storyline has a purpose,” she says. “The releases coming from iamamiwhoami are episode based. Function and purpose will always be the motive to how these episodes are shared, musically and visually. The work done needs to be able to speak for itself.”

External linksEdit

prelude Prelude 699130082.451322-
bounty bou-1u-2nty20101104 / .; john+46 702 888 037 / ; john bclumpiamamiwhoami; bounty 20130603
kin kin 20120611severdropsgood workerplayin due orderidle talkrascalkillgoodsiamamiwhoami; kin 20120611
BLUE fountainhunting for pearlsvistatap your glassblue bluethinchasing kitesripplethe last dancershadowshowdivethe deadlock
2011: Way Out West
2012: Stockholm Music & ArtsPopagandaBerlin FestivalEtherBBC Radio 6 Music: Lauren LaverneFreeFormFestival
2013: Razzmatazz: Grand Tour SueciaElectric BrixtonForbidden FruitPark LivePohodaMelt!LatitudeSoundrive FestSymbiosis GatheringBrooklyn Masonic Temple
interviews 2011: BULLETT: An Inscrutable Interview
2012: DN: Lättar på mystikenThe Guardian: The Ethereal World of Jonna Lee • Dazed: Exclusive Q&AIntro: Eine Band als RätselClash: Exclusive InterviewNotion: What Can You Do with Nothing?DIY: Every Event in Our Storyline Has a PurposeThisispaper: InterviewGay Times: Yet Another Amazing Swedish Musical ExportMTV Iggy: The Elusive Genius of iamamiwhoamiPlayGround: Trying to Lift the Veil of Mystery Off iamamiwhoamiWired: Musical Guessing Ich bin, du bist, wir alle Inkognito zum Hype - Das Phänomen iamamiwhoamiNoisey: iamamiwhoami ist nicht von dieser WeltVogue: A New Beginningaqnb: The Illusion of Art
CONCERT 2018: ionnalee; UNDER YOUR CONTROLionnalee; EVERYONE AFRAID TO BE FORGOTTEN tourHEAVENLille VEGASlaktkyrkanRED clubSTEREOLETO 2018Festival of Voice 2018EuroPride 2018Bottom LoungeEl Rey TheatreMEZZANINECine JoiaQueremos! Festival 2018Music Hall of WilliamsburgStatement Festival 2018Bel étageMeetFactoryBerghainBIME Live 2018Oval SpaceSmolna
2019: ionnalee; REMEMBER THE FUTURE tourRazzmatazz (EABF tour 2019)Les Femmes S'en MêlentParadiso NoordElsewhereThe Bowery BallroomThe SinclairL'AstralPhoenix Concert TheatreBottom Lounge (RTF tour 2019)HoloceneThe CrocodileVENUEGreat American Music HallFonda Theatre
interviews 2017: Vital Ventures: An interview with ionnaleeThe Ethereal New Musical Endeavour from Jonna LeeJonna Lee of iamamiwhoami is Making Her Own Rules in MusicWatch ionnalee’s Stunning New Audiovisual Film “NOT HUMAN”
2018: Jonna Lee: ”Jag utforskade min rädsla för att inte bli sedd”ionnalee: “Estoy cuestionando las expectativas que tenemos sobre las mujeres que ponemos en un pedestal” ionnalee Brings a "Full on Requiem" to the Album Format Voice Against Time, the ionnalee InterviewPreguntas para desnudar la mente creativa de Ionnaleeionnalee – A Searcher Who Exploresionnalee: Things You Should Know About My World Tour 10 quick ones with ionnaleeSight & Sound: Jonna Lee (iamamiwhoami)Descobrir Música entrevista: ionnaleeЙонна Лі (ionnalee) відповідає на питання Pur Pur, Pianoбой, Panivalkova та інших
2019: Just the Beginning Episode 2 - Kickstarter