Singer-songwriter and producer oceanfromtheblue,at first going by the name Ocean, said his music resembles the huge waters that change with the turn of the seasons.
“It’s the same ocean, but it exudes a whole different aura with the shift of time. I thought that was interesting and a lot like my music. I’m fundamentally the same person, but the music I make will evolve with the different seasons of my life,” he made sense of.
Oceanfromtheblue is one of those interesting musician in South Korea who became known just by their musicality. His name never being mentioned beside a member of a popular K-pop idol group and having not appeared on a prime-time or reality TV show, the 28-year-old artist has built his career layer by layer.
The South Korean artist spread the word about himself for global fans even in front of his authority debut, when he was as yet a novice sharing unreleased music through SoundCloud.
“Back in 2016, when I was still using the name Ocean, YouTube channel ‘We Love K-pop’ that dug out good ‘K-indie’ music from SoundCloud posted two of my songs — ‘Baby’ and ‘Wish.’ That hyped me among foreign fans. I was really lucky,” Ocean, a name the R&B musician still uses in short, told The Korea Herald in an exclusive interview in Seoul in October.
With that as a foundation, the artist built on his intimate relationship with fans ahead of debuting in 2018 with his first EP “Luv-fi (2018).” He made a smooth landing into the highly competitive K-pop music scene with the album, signing a contract with his current agency Nostalgia Music and also joining Warner Music Korea’s roster of singer-songwriters.
Oceanfromtheblue is one of those rare artists in South Korea who became known just by their musicality. His name never being mentioned beside a member of a popular K-pop idol group and having not appeared on a prime-time or reality TV show, the 28-year-old artist has built his career layer by layer.
The South Korean musician made himself known to international fans even ahead of his official debut, when he was still an amateur sharing unreleased music through SoundCloud.
He started music with a small band in middle school. The band lasted through his childhood until the age of 20, when he became the only person left as the other bandmates all chose different career paths.
As much as the individual songs reflect his emotions, Ocean designs his albums meticulously to deliver himself through a coherent storyline. And looking back on his discography, one can easily trace the progression of his thoughts.
His July 2020 EP, “Take Off,” shows the artist’s urge to leave behind his depressive past. Through the nine tracks, he walks through the steps his younger self had taken. His nine-track EP “Message,” released a year later in July, is a compilation of messages for his closest people, including his parents, his late best friend and himself.
The most recent and unprecedented advance for Ocean came with latest album, “Forward,” which he released Sept. 29. For the album’s lead track “Say Yes,” he teamed up with producer Unsinkable while singer and rapper unofficialboyy featured his voice and contributed to the lyrics. Singer-songwriter ROMderful took part as both lyricist and composer of “Purple,” while “Icy Girl” was produced in part by crew 8BallTown’s DJ Yunu and featured up-and-coming R&B singer SOLE.
Taking the name of the album, track “Forward” was produced mainly by Dejavu Group’s Viann, while Superfreak Records’ crew member Sailli took the helm of producing “Poison,” featured by rapper Don Malik. “Snow” was produced with the collaboration of singer Gyeong Je-hwan of the novice label Layered Island and Daul of Soap Records, while “PTSD” was composed by plusNone of Paktory Company.
“I want to do music that ages (with me). I want it to be humane, natural. So, when I reach my 50s and someone looks back on my discography, they could understand what kind of life I’d lived in my 20s, 30s and 40s, and how my thoughts had changed through my music. I suppose it’s like recording my life with my voice.”