x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Mike Posner talks success ahead of trip to Dubai

'Cooler Than Me' hitmaker spent years practising in his mum's basement.

Singer Mike Posner visits SIRIUS XM Studio on August 5, 2010 in New York City.
Singer Mike Posner visits SIRIUS XM Studio on August 5, 2010 in New York City.

One of pop music’s hottest young stars comes to Dubai this week and Mike Posner says he could not be more excited. His hits Cooler Than Me and Please Don’t Go sped up the US Billboard Hot 100 to reach the top 10.

“It is going to be a blast,” Posner said. “It will be my first time [in an Arab country] and I’m really excited because I’ll be there two days before my birthday. I might do a little early celebration,” the American singer said.

Posner will be the supporting act for Pharrell Williams and N.E.R.D at Gulf Bike Week on February 10.

Posner, 22, has been writing and producing songs since he was a teenager and always dreamt of music business success. He started out writing and producing songs.

“I wanted to be a producer and a songwriter for other people,” Posner said. “I would constantly try to sell my songs to record labels and to other artists and I would always be rejected, so I figured: hey, well I might as well try singing this stuff myself. So I did. For whatever reason, people seem to like it.

“It’s hard for me to imagine my life without music, so if I wasn’t an artist, I would be a producer, if I wasn’t a producer, I would be a writer, but somewhere where I would be making music,” he said.

Posner has always loved music, but had no particular role model.

“I guess I had people that I looked up to, but I’ve never wanted to be anybody else,” he said. “But some of the bands that I’ve loved, and singers that I’ve loved as a child, are people like Kurt Cobain. My big sister was a big Nirvana fan, so he’s always been somebody I’ve looked up to. I love Andre 3000 from Outkast.”

One of his most memorable moments was the day after he landed his record deal.

“I remember the day after I signed. I came home and I was still living at home with my parents, and for years and years and years I always made music in the basement of their house, and I told my mom that I was going to the basement to work, and instead of saying, ‘that’s not work’ or, ‘get a real job’ or, ‘you suck’, she said OK, and that was a rite of passage for me.”

Posner said he owed his success to his fans, but admitted that he hated the term. Instead, he calls them friends. He said he was always trying to connect with them and thank them any way he could.

“You know, I’m on the internet at least an hour a day talking to people on Twitter and Facebook and thanking people, and that shows that I try to stay as long as I can every night and meet as many people as I can and just say thank you, and really, that’s the best part of my day.”

Posner writes his own songs, and finds it a great outlet for expressing his feelings.

“It’s always something that I’ve gone through and it’s almost impossible for me to write a song about something that I haven’t gone through.

“And I think that’s a blessing, because when people listen to my music they know for sure that they’re hearing something that’s real.”

His newest song, Bow Chicka Wow Wow will be released in the United States and the Middle East in the next couple of weeks.

After his Dubai appearance, Posner will continue on to Australia and Europe, and then resume working on his next record.

“I can’t wait for that to come out,” he said.

newsdesk@thenational.ae