When you’re on a roll, you’re on a roll. 2018 was a fantastic year for Australian artist Kian, who won the triple j Unearthed High competition in the summer (designed to aid in the discovery of new Australian music) and then saw his “Waiting” single go viral. Yeah, that’s when things really started to take off, although naturally Kian’s career got started way earlier than that.
“I always fiddled around with music, but only the last year and a half was when I was taking it seriously and thought I could make a career out of it,” he says. “It came about from having certain opportunities given to me that opened up the doors to have my own music be created. My dad kept pushing me to create and write, and that’s what’s created this music that people are liking so much at the moment, so I’m excited to keep creating.”
The influence of Kian’s father is important; as well as keeping the young artist motivated, he's been involved with the Indigenous Hip-Hop Project for the past 15 years.
“I got to do that with him when I was younger, so that helped my creative spark,” Kian says. “They go into indigenous communities with songwriters and do dance workshops, hip-hop and stuff. They make raps with the kids and stuff like that.”
Kian describes his sound as a fusion of a lot of different genres, pulling in influences from pretty much everything he likes.
“It has a message behind it, and its own voice,” he says. “My sound is a bit of pop, R&B, soul and hip-hop all mashed together. I think my next few releases will see me open up as an artist.”
All of this brought the singer and songwriter to the attention of Republic Records. “I was contacted by Brett Alperowitz [Republic’s Senior VP of A&R] on social media, and he got in contact with my dad,” Kian says. “We had discussions about a trip to New York, and a possible deal. That was mind blowing, to have one of the biggest record labels come to me so early. For me, that definitely meant that people were seeing my music, the song that I had out, and it made me feel like I can go somewhere with this.”
Indeed, Alperowitz tweeted on Dec. 15, “Congratulations to Kian and his amazing team as we welcome him to Republic Records! We’re very lucky to be working with this incredibly talented young man.”
The first fruit of the relationship is a rerelease of that “Waiting single, and the debut album will be out sometime this year.
“We haven’t properly gone into the studio to finish,” Kian says, “but I’ve been busy writing for a year, so I have a lot of material.”
Date Signed: November 2018
Label: Republic Records
Type of Music: Alternative
Management: Dion Brownfield
Booking: Tom Windish & Rob Zifarelli, Paradigm Agency
Legal: Nick Weaser, Clintons
Marketing: Lance Turner
Publicity: Marisa Bianco
A&R: Ben Adelson & Brett Alperowitz