Hailing from Oslo, the rising genre-bending six-piece ensemble GiddyGang have teamed up with Vuyo, one of Norway’s most exciting MC’s for the release of their new EP, ‘Sour’, out now! The production on ‘Sour’ is a rich and well-honed backdrop for Vuyo and lead vocalist Sarah Nærø Pettersen to explore themes of racial identity, police brutality, love, relationships and mental health.
Drawing inspiration from legendary beatmakers like J Dilla and modern ensembles like Butcher Brown as well as artists like Mac Ayers – GiddyGang blend hip-hop, jazz, R&B and indie for a sound that is warm, nostalgic and fresh all at once.
GiddyGang first caught our attention back in 2020 after dropping their first ‘GiddyGang Mix’ album that first saw the group join forces with Vuyo as well as showcasing their wacky and wonderful style of production and soulful vocals. Today, ‘Sour‘ signals that the group has no plans of slowing down, rather evolving their sound and captivating a new audience across Europe.
We caught up with GiddyGang after the release of Sour to find out a little more about the groups principals as a creative collective, their musical beginnings, their collaborative process with Vuyo and how the cultural underbelly of Oslo helps shape their musical perspectives.
Growing up, who were your biggest creative influences? What music was playing around the house as a kid?
We’re a melting pot of different musical upbringings, and our first years of listening to music were wildly different. Sarah grew up with the Voice and MTV constantly playing in the background. Every summer her father made custom mixes with only RnB and hip-hop. Dr Dre, Eminem, Rihanna, Timbaland.. you know the drill.
Sigmund and Sigurd grew up listening to funk and jazz while Martin is convinced that ABBA is what made him a good musician. BK hardly listened to anything other than Kirk Franklin for his first few years, and Kevin has always been all about rock n’roll. Our references might have evolved into something with some more common ground over time, but all of us bring our unique musical upbringings to the table and it’s definitely part of what makes the GiddyGang sound.
How did you guys all come to meet? And in an era that tends to focus on the ‘individual’, how come you guys decided to start this creative collective of artists?
Four of us met in college and connected quickly. Sigurd (on horns) and Vuyo linked up with Sigmund (drummer) through Instagram, and the rest is history. We all feel like we share the same musical vision, and it feels so right to join forces. Being a collective is incredibly exciting for several reasons.
Bouncing creative ideas off of each other always turns into something bigger and better than we could have imagined on our own. We feel that the playful energy and creative flow that happens when we are all in the same room (or on the same stage), playing and creating together is really special. We want the music and the feeling listeners get from it to be the most important thing, and the best way of focusing on it is by this amazing group all being part of it.
‘Told Me’ is a beautiful blend of these atmospheric Jazz sounds and a classic boom-bap hip hop beat. Where did this track begin? What was the concept behind it and did the track evolve out of a certain sample or lyric?
Sigmund and Martin made the beat and Sarah started the writing process right away. One by one, the rest of the band jumped on the beat which ended up being Sarah’s favourite track on the EP. ‘Told Me’ is the first love song Sarah’s ever written, and it’s an ode to her soulmate/bestfriend and partner in crime and creativity, Sigmund.
Sarah claims that “Sigmund is my biggest inspiration when it comes to music, living and loving. He’s so selfless and kind, so full of love. I think he always makes sure to give people around him space to be themselves completely both in music and in life in general.”
You guys said that Sour was a chance for you guys to show that you’re not just beatmakers but ‘songwriters’. In your opinion what is the main difference between a beatmaker and a songwriter?
The difference between a beatmaker and a songwriter for us is that beat-making is a more spontaneous ‘in the moment’ kinda process, tryna catch a vibe or emotion in the moment, while songwriting is a continuous and in some ways maybe more dedicated process.
Don’t get us wrong, we put pride in our beats, but we also want to tell stories, and hopefully be able to make people relate to them, which we feel is more on the ‘songwriting side’ of things. Having this focus through the process gave us a different perspective on writing and producing the songs, which we hope and believe people listening will be able to feel and appreciate.
How did you guys first come to hear of Vuyo’s work and what was it about his sound that made for the perfect collaborator on this project?
As mentioned earlier, Sigmund and Vuyo linked up via Instagram. We wanted to make hip-hop music but we didn’t know any good rappers. We admire his clever bars and flawless flows, and fortunately, we clicked.
How would you describe Oslo as a city for creatives? Is it easy to find inspiration? How has living there formed you as artist?
Right now, Oslo is a vibrant city with high creative energy on so many levels. It’s starting to get easier finding inspiration and linking up with like-minded creatives now that the city is opening up. Most of us met in the same school in Oslo, and the environment of musicians and artists around the school is important to us, both as inspiration and as friends.
Who are three artists or creatives from Oslo that you think deserve more recognition and wanna shout out?
There are so many great artists in Oslo, but off the top of our heads: Ivan Ave, AKA, Bård Berg
What’s the plan for the future? Any plans for an album upcoming or is it all about studio time right now?
Right now, our goal is to make a lot of new music together with Vuyo, and play as many live shows as possible. We have already started recording our next project, and really enjoy the journey of writing and creating together, as well as seeing what our music means to people.
Finish the sentence: “When our career is over I hope we are remembered for….”
…spreading love and good energy through our music. <3
Lastly, I have to ask for your guide to Oslo, if you wanted to show someone the real heart of your hometown, where would you take them to get some good food and to see some dope live music?
We would take you to Sushi and Dinner, our fav sushi spot to eat, then to our studio ‘GIDDY HQ’ to make some beats or listen to good music, and then round of with some good wine and DJs at Oslovelo