The Life Of… an Artist, Performer and Producer

By Hannah V ,artist, performer and producer.


Hannah V Use

Interview with Hannah V ,artist, performer and producer.


Briefly explain the areas of music you work in.

I am an artist, record producer, songwriter, keyboard player and pianist. I write and produce records for myself as   well as other artists, play piano on records, vocal produce for artists and occasionally do advert music – whatever pays the bills!


How proficient/flexible on your instrument do you need to be?

I actually  need  to  start  practicing  again!  Even  though  I trained at the Royal Academy of Music, my last  ten years have been in the pop session/studio world – so not necessarily areas where my technical abilities were tested. But I am getting more and more calls to feature on records as a piano player – with artists wanting ‘epic intros/outros’ etc. so I need to get back to my scales! So, I need to be incredibly proficient and flexible on my instrument, as my job varies so much from day to day.


Is this something you can make a living from?

It’s tough and I have sacrificed a lot to get here, but yes – with proper planning, a structured reliable business model and talent/a good work ethos to back it all up, it is possible to make a living out of this. I mean, I don’t have a fancy car or anything, but I am making it work for me!


What five tips would you give to someone for working successfully in a professional environment?

  • Be humble. Always.
  • Team work makes the dream work. Who is your team? Nurture those relationships/friendships. There is no better feeling than cutting a great record and having the opportunity to hire your homies. Shared success is double the success!
  • Be punctual and polite – it goes without saying really.
  • Surround yourself by people that are better  than you and use this opportunity to ask questions. A lot of them!
  • Make sure you take proper time off (I’m still working on this!) as it is important to have a life outside of music. Nurture your hobbies and do things that have nothing to do with music whatsoever.


What is touring life like?

Amazing, mad, exhausting and exhilarating! I was on tour for seven years and I saw the world a few  times around.   I have made long lasting friendships and visited places I didn’t even know existed. Touring life can be deceptive though – the tour bubble is a real thing and coming back to real life is not always easy.


What is the best hospitality rider you have seen?

I once played a  venue  in  Austria  with  Bugz  in  the  Attic – we were touring as a six piece.  Our  rider consisted of twenty big bottles of vodka. The posh stuff. Lord have mercy!


Do you have to change your attitude or approach when working with more successful artists?

No. I treat every single one of my clients with the same respect. Of course, the email chains are a lot crazier with the bigger artists and the pressure can be full on, but I am grateful for every client that comes through my studio and try my best to give them all my undivided attention – regardless of where they are in their professional journey.


What draws you towards spending more time in the studio?

I love the whole process of creating a record from scratch. Having an idea/concept, sitting in the studio to flesh it out, getting writers/musicians/artists involved, putting in production details, running off parts for mix – I love it all. It is incredible sitting back and listening to a mastered song and thinking, ‘this did not exist a month ago’.

I also really like sleeping in my own bed every night!


How did you get in to producing and co-writing?

I was always tinkering away on my computer, producing, writing, etc. I initially started out by just writing with a few friends and honed my skills this way. This naturally grew into what my business is today!


What advice do you have for the next generation of artists coming into the music industry, and in particular for young female producers?

My advice for any young producers – male or female – is this: be brave.

It is really tough out there, people won’t always like your music and that can hurt, trust me. But if it sounds good to you, if it resonates with you and if you are doing the best you can, you just have to stick to your guns. Don’t try and adapt to the trends around you. The whole point of this thing is to be true to ourselves, thereby encouraging our listeners to be true to themselves.


What have been the highlights of your career so far?

Playing Staples Centre with Rihanna and Eminem and having my grandma come to that gig in her bright orange sari! Traveling the world, making long lasting friendships, my first radio play, having people call me Hannah V now without thinking twice – even though my artist name has only existed for three years!


But the best moments I have are when I am in my studio creating with my friends. That feeling when you know you’ve got something special. It’s spiritual! 


If you could look back and give yourself one piece of advice when you started out, what would it be?

‘You are good enough!’

The music industry can be a harsh place to live in – and so often we are pitted against each other. Looks wise, music wise – I have so many moments in my career thinking, ‘there is no way I can compete with so-and-so.’

I am still trying to get to a point where I am 100% confident in who I am and what my purpose is. It is tough, but I’m getting there!

Hannah V

Music Producer/Pianist/Keyboard Player

Twitter: @HannaV

Facebook/Instagram/Soundcloud: hannahvofficial

By Hannah V ,artist, performer and producer.

Hannah V Use

Interview with Hannah V ,artist, performer and producer.


Perfect opportunity from the @ASurteesTrust for students and @LCoMAlumni whose work is rooted in, or influenced by,…
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