Gabi Goldman is back with ‘2 HARD 2’.
The emerging Swedish R&B-pop songstress returns with a third single that, in Gabi’s own words, “is describing exactly how it feels being stuck in something that’s not good for you. I feel like people wanna talk about heartache when they’re over it but I wanna talk about it when I’m in it. It’s the era of situationships! Sometimes love is not what you’re expecting it to be and I just wanna be real with that. I’ve been in too many toxic relationships to not wanna release a song about it”.
‘2 HARD 2’ is co-written and co-produced by Jonah Christian (Tems, Mahalia) and Decap (Anderson.Paak, Talib Kweli); with writers Feli Ferraro (Normani, Chris Brown) and Livvi Franc (Ciara), the track dials up Gabi’s versatility and vocal playfulness, as she delves into heartache and toxic ‘situationships’.
We sat down with Gabi Goldman to talk more about ‘2 HARD 2’, the purpose of her music and more.
Hello Gabi! How are you doing?
I’m doing great. I just returned from London after fashion week meetings and photo shoots. It was such a vibe! I love style and fashion; I often express myself with clothes and appearances. So it was great going there, being inspired by other people, dressing up, meeting new people and just that whole vibe. Now I’m back in Stockholm and just recharging.
Do you get inspiration for your content and concepts from attending events and meeting new people?
Going to a fashion show I’ve never attended before was an eye-opener. And it was great seeing other people express themselves through their styling and not care about other people’s thoughts. They go off of what they love. And I think that what’s inspiring is meeting new people and travelling, seeing how different it is, depending on what country you go to.
How do you find inspiration for your music and the feelings you want to describe?
I would say that I find inspiration through life experiences. Usually, the tougher life lessons, like the heartache, the mistakes you make, the bumps in the road, the darker periods. That’s when I feel the need of both sharing, but also like I might need someone that relates to it and, you know, find it very similar to their experience. And I think that I find comfort in that, but also inspiration and motivation to put it into words.
Your new single ‘2 HARD 2’ takes inspiration from personal ‘situationships’. Can you talk us through the creative process?
Jonah Christian, Feli Ferraro, Livvi Franc and Nicholas Piantedosi are the writers and the producers. Jonah Christian also produced my first song, ‘Body Heath’, and I love him as a producer. This is the first song I haven’t written, so for me, it was more of getting the song pitched and instantly relating to the story about being stuck in a toxic relationship or a situationship as you would call it nowadays and not finding your way out of it. The more you go, the more you live it, the more dependent you become, and the more possessive almost. When you feel like a person is taking up your energy every minute of the day, you want them to give their time. And that’s what you live off of. I find that very, very real and also very relatable. Many people talked about these situations when they got out of it, how that was bad for them and the dos and don’ts. But I also like hearing about proper experiences and people going through it. I find that way more inspiring and relatable.
I want this next single for people to listen to it and feel that’s exactly how I feel and that we can unite and get stronger and empowered by it.
How therapeutic is putting your personal experiences into music for you? How comfortable are you in doing it?
It is therapy. I think I started off being way more guarded than I am right now. Because I also have started to realise that strength and confidence also equals vulnerability and sharing. And as I mentioned before, I find comfort in other people relating to my story. So, for me, it’s therapeutic, but it also depends on the subject. But in terms of relationships and heartache, I find it very comforting to write every emotion, every feeling, every second of the day down for yourself to be able to look back and be like, “Look at the progress that I made”. And also take care of that feeling because what you just felt, I bet there’s a billion people out there also like feeling that same exact thing that same second. And that’s pretty cool when you look at it, it makes you feel less alone.
You released ‘Body Heath’, ‘Few Good Friends’ and ‘2 HARD 2’. What do you want listeners to take from each song?
From ‘Body Heat’, the independent, confident feeling that you can please yourself, definitely self-love. You don’t need anyone to be the greatest, you need yourself. And in turn, if you are going to love yourself, you also need to work on yourself and know that you can do whatever you want; you’re so strong, beautiful, and smart. Just do you.
‘From ‘Few Good Friends’ that’s a homage to my friends. The ones helping me out of my worst heartaches, my toughest periods of anxiety and life. Also, the song is about the importance of having real people around you in a world where many people want to be with you because of superficial things and to take care of the people there for you, even if only one friend or a couple. it’s so important to find real ones. This is what I feel.
From ‘2 HARD 2’, we dig deeper, and I would say it can be relatable in the sense of being in a situationship that got the best of me, and that can happen to everyone, but let’s unite, let’s make a pact to all of us never to go back to that relationship. But we can’t do this alone, we need each other. So, I want this song to be also empowering.
How do you feel now that people can listen to your music and take away these messages?
It humbles me and helps me understand why I’m doing this. Especially since I’ve been working for so long to finally get someone to reach out to me saying, “I heard your song today, and it’s game-changing”, or “I loved it, and you just made my day”. I can’t describe honestly with words how much that does to me, my life and my purpose; all the hours I put down, all the periods of times where I’ve doubted myself.
It’s such a relief that people can start listening to my songs, follow my journey and relate to the messages I share; hopefully, find comfort and guidance through me; that would be so fulfilling.
What’s the purpose of your music?
I think it’s my expression, and I can sound corny, but I feel in a sense that I’m supposed to do this; but in terms of purpose, for me to feel good about it, it’s definitely for people to relate to my music to it, that’s what I want. I want to have a concert where people love the music because it does something to them that makes them feel in a way, whatever that way thing may be.
If it’s joy, sadness, anger, or whatever, it’s just that they feel something and gravitate towards it. And if I can be there for people, listen to their stories, so I also don’t feel so alone, and I wanna unite and make it, you know, I wanna connect with people. That’s what makes it meaningful to me.
When did you realise music was the right path for you?
I think at a pretty young age, but back then, I felt more guarded; also, I had quite a bit of self-doubt, even though no one would’ve noticed. Because I’m such a performer, I struggled with my head a lot, and I think that I didn’t dare to realise it, but then when I did, maybe in school, I did this kid show as a kid when I was 12 or 13. And after that, I realised that I’m good at this. I remember also singing at an event, and a person approached me saying, “Don’t ever let this go”. It just really got to me, and I kind of needed to hear that, and I felt it strongly. That was the sign. And even though I felt it in myself before, that was a sort of “let’s do it”.
After working for so many years, how would you define your sound?
It’s hard to describe but R&B meets pop; also a sad pop girl who loves melodies, melancholic melodies trapped in this R&B rhythm; but it’s also dancey with a chill vibe. As I said, it’s hard to describe. I don’t love to put myself too much in a genre. I want people to vibe to my music all the time.
But definitely, R&B meets pop.
It’s also up to the listeners. What do they feel? You take what you want to take.
What do you have planned for the next months?
More music is coming. My project is five songs and I’m working on a visual project alongside it with my awesome visual team. When the five songs are released, I will release a five-minute video following a narrative, like an emotional roller coaster, basically through every song. I’m very excited about that. The visual part is really important to me; I want listeners to get the full picture and follow me emotionally too.
And there is a music video for ‘2 HARD 2’. A really cool video. I choreographed the piece, and I am also symbolically going to show you how a toxic relationship can be shown in the expression of dance. It’s not only me dancing, it’s partly me dancing with myself, and then I’m also dancing with someone to show that it’s really hard to let go of what’s still with you, even though you’re hustling and trying to find your way out.
‘2 HARD 2’, Gabi Goldman’s new single, is available to stream across all platforms.