Welcome to The Drop, Refinery29's home for exclusive music video premieres. We want to shine the spotlight on women artists whose music inspires, excites, and (literally) moves us. This is where we'll champion their voices.
If Hanne Mjøen has anything to say about it, Norway is about to give Sweden a run for its money when it comes to making infectious pop music. This accomplished songwriter, whose Euro pop tracks have racked up over 21 million streams on Spotify, is breaking out in 2018 as a pop star in her own right.
In her video for "Sounds Good to Me," directed by Camilo Paredes for Spingun Films, Mjøen explores the parallel lives of two characters from two different social classes through the distinct eyes of a young woman. Watch the video below and read the inside story of how it was shot from Mjøen herself.
Refinery29: When you read the video treatment, what about it appealed to you?
Hanne Mjøen: "I sent three mood boards to the producers to show them what kind of vibe I wanted for the song, and they transformed all my ideas into one concept that I instantly fell in love with. The story line is parallel lives, but in both lives I would feel the same and go through the same emotions. The messy grunge look and the wealthy posh look would end up with the same feelings and struggles, and that’s what combines us all, we all have feelings."
Where was this video shot at, and how long did it take?
"The video was shot in different locations throughout Berlin. We had four different sets: a super cool, grungy apartment; a night out on the town; an amazing tennis court; and a location that looked like a palace. Berlin was the perfect place for this video because I feel like it’s a place people can express all their emotions without apologizing for it, and that’s what ‘Sounds Good To Me’ is really about. It’s about all the bad parts of a relationship with a boyfriend, girlfriend, or even with yourself, and still after going through hell together, feeling that it’s worth it. Accepting all the bad parts for the good parts. We only had two days to shoot the video, so we ended up being on set for about 30 hours! I had a great team with me, and they made me shine and stay positive. I’m so grateful for their effort."
There are a lot of scenes with multiple Hannes in them. Which scene did you have to do the most takes of?
"We worked really hard to get the scene with multiple me’s on the tennis court. It was kind of a last minute idea from the director, so we didn’t really have a lot of time. I basically had to do the same performance four times in different chairs, without moving any of the chairs. It was a bit stressful, but it looks incredible, and ended up being my favorite shot!"
Which of the looks that you wear in the video was your favorite?
"My favorite look in the video is the tennis look. I felt like I was in a movie from the '90s. The outfit was amazing, and to get to play around with the vintage tennis rackets was a dream. I also had a picture in my mood board of a tennis court that looked just like the one we got, and the sun just made it look perfect. The sports style is also what’s closest to my own personal style, and making that more extreme felt good."
What was the part of "Sounds Good to Me" that you wrote first? What got the creative process for the song started?
"I almost always write the melody first, once we have a good vibe in the track it just flows through me, like a creative river. I record them and try piecing them together. Usually, I start with the chorus, just to have an idea of what the song's gonna be about, but for ‘Sounds Good To Me’ the chorus became a verse, and the melody flow just kept going until we had a song. The phrase ‘Sounds Good To Me’ came pretty quickly, and for the song to really mean something, we made the lyrics around it much darker, vulnerable and emotional. I’m a very emotional person, so for me to write about these feelings and being so honest felt a bit scary, but also very good."