It only took a few seconds of hearing RÜ’s sensual, raspy voice to melt this listener with her debut single ZENsations.
Immediately captured by her vocals underlined by a ’90s soulful groove, ZENsations was an instant sensation. Behind the moniker, RÜ is Ruth Victoria Rømyhr, and the Norwegian songstress has just released her debut video directed by Bjørnar Strømsholm. We went behind the scenes of this exciting new artist to discover more.
Thanks so much for chatting with us about your debut video ZENsations. What does the song mean, and how does the video enhance its message?
The theme of this song is the importance of acceptance, friendship and love. It’s about the lack of decency and humanity that I and many others experience daily. Ranging from a side eye on the bus to people physically coming up to you and expressing their unhappiness with how you choose to carry yourself. That’s unfortunate, but the reality we live in. People will always have something to say and find ways to project their own insecurities onto you. But it’s about how you choose to respond and react. Will you continue to feed the cycle of xenophobia, or will you be able to turn around and find love?
We were all born the same. We were all playful children once. I wanted the music video to represent that.
I want to be the one who always remembers that everyone is born innocent and vulnerable. We were all born the same. We were all playful children once. I wanted the music video to represent that. The warmth and comfort you’ll evolve inside yourself if you just let the love from the ones who care for you shine. And you’ll only be able to do that if you accept that everyone is different.
But everyone has the right to be treated in the same kind and loving way. And what better way to show the message than by just having fun with my friend and not giving a flying fuck.
The video is so fun and colourful! Was the concept your idea?
Yes. The concept and the theme were all my idea. I take real pride in every aspect of my art, from cover shoots to songwriting. I love being creative and having everything make scenes in some sort of way. Details are super important to me, and I’m super lucky to have worked with amazing people who appreciate my vision and art.
We could see hints of snow on the streets; where was it filmed? Does the place have a meaning for you?
Behind the scenes, we filmed in two different locations. The first was a pretty avenue, in fact, the only one we have in Oslo. The place has no meaning to me, but I wanted a place where it was open and a little fancy-looking. The second place has, on the other hand, some meaning to me. It’s a green creative workshop house called FLOKE, where some of my friends volunteer. It’s led by this lovely, inspiring woman and now my good friend Sophia Josefin Johansson.
We’re focusing on second-hand and redesigning, and it’s a space where youth and kids can perfect their passion. I love being a part of a community like that, whose only goal and drive is to help each other’s dreams come true. It’s beautiful and rare, and I’m so grateful to be a part of that and have the privilege to film my first music video there.
This is your debut video. How was it being on set for the first time? Were there any surprises that you didn’t count on?
Yes, it’s true, this was my first music video. But I have been on sets before for shoots and other stuff, so I felt content and good from start to end. We were only four people doing the video, and that was so smooth. What I have learned from previous experience is that it can become somewhat more stressful the more people you involve. So no surprises this time.
You have a unique and cool style! What does fashion mean to you, and how does it relate to your musical expression?
Fashion is everything to me! As I said before, I put a lot of effort and take a lot of pride in everything I do relating to my art. Including how I dress and express myself because I consider clothes as an art form too. And the makeup, of course! There is seriously nothing I love more than waking up and feeling the urge to say something that day. I absolutely adore myself for being able to do that by putting together pieces and blending some crazy colours on my face. I love walking out the door, knowing no one is like me. And the same goes for my musical expression.
I also want to create a colourful vibe and safe space where every difference, childish association and true individuality is celebrated. I want to be something the crowd haven’t heard before but someone you, on a deeper level, can relate to and connect to. When people listen to me, I want them to think. Making someone feel like what they have to say matters is something I know many a soul out there long to feel. I know I needed it badly in my earlier years trying to find a foothold in this brutal world.
A lot is happening in the video. Which was your favourite part to record?
Without a doubt, the bathtub scene. It was the last clip we recorded, and it had been a long day of shooting. As you saw, it was still snow outside, and the weather wasn’t so hot, so I was freezing from the moment we started that day. So, the perfect ending and my favourite scene were, of course, finally getting in the bubbly hot tub with my good friend Carlisle.
And finally, which would you choose – a weekend at a spa or a weekend shopping? On us of course!
I would have to choose a weekend shopping. I’m such a sucker for secondhand vintage clothes and finding unique pieces with a story attached. The stories hold all the value.
Thank you, RÜ we can’t wait to hear and see more from you.