Sabine: SEOM, you started your music career at a very early age. Although you began working with a few bands, you switched gears and now you are mainly a solo artist. What is behind your stage name "SEOM" and how would you describe the development of this identity?
SEOM: The stage name SEOM stands for the German equivalents of: S-ensitivity, E-nergy, O-rientation und M-oxie.
I feel that my musical path can be described as an unfolding flower. After my musical abilities were unveiled I worked hard, learning over the years to bring more focus to my practice, which resulted in a more fine-tuned and refined sound. I learned how to meditate as a child and have always taken the path of inner knowledge to help guide me in other aspects of my life, and it was quite a challenge for me to be able to find a method of conveying that knowledge through my music. As I developed further along my path, I felt driven to integrate this element more intensely in my music. And just as a flower blooms and then releases seeds to spread out and eventually find a place to root and grow, I send my music out into the world with the hope that it delights and inspires the open-hearted. Perhaps my plant isn't fully grown yet, but it is flourishing in abundance.
Sabine: A lot of mainstream rap and hip hop music is associated with coolness, pimped-out cars and crazy parties instead of deep lyrics that provoke thought. Nevertheless, you are resolute on writing about more important issues. Which issues are the most important in your opinion? And how does that fit into the rap/hip hop scene?
SEOM: In my perspective there is a lot of depth in these music genres, even though it is often overshadowed by mainstream music that catches more attention in the media. I thinks it's really a shame that there is such a negative connotation with hip hop. In reality there are quite a few really excellent artists out there who really counter common belief.
Topics that I personally try to convey through my music are basically the ancient wisdom of the meaning of life, which are things that each of us can discover within ourselves. The importance of pure love, mindfulness, tuning into the voice of the heart, the power of one's thoughts, inner peace and the realization that everything is interconnected. Especially in current times, it seems obvious that these topics need to be touched on, and particularly in the music scene where we have such a wide reaching audience. These types of lyrics resonate with people in a way that makes you wonder if this is what everyone has been waiting for. This resonates encouragement and understanding back to me. Even when some people can't understand everything I say, they can feel the weight of the words and how they just belong there. This delights me, because it shows me that the world is changing and people are becoming more open.
Sabine: It now makes complete sense why you place such a high value on your lyrics. Where do you find inspiration for new songs?
SEOM: Life serves as my inspiration. Everything I feel, see, perceive, learn and hear whispering in my heart is written in new songs. What is fundamentally important is that the content is constructive in that it encourages people to wake up, build, comfort, inspire and create bridges between one another.
Tour dates and Seminars:
3 - 4 September 2016
Solothurn (CH) – Seminar „Spirit and Soul“ & SEOM
10 September 2016
Merzig – Saarland (SEOM Seminar)
11 September 2016
17 September 2016
Nußdorf (AT) - Friedensfest am Attersee
24 September 2016
München (SEOM Tagesseminar)
30 September 2016
Frankfurt (Spirit Code Association ®)
1 October 2016
Mannheim (Spirit Code Association ®)
8 October 2016
Puderbach – SEOM Tagesseminar
14 October 2016
Schwerin – Konzert
15 October 2016
Schwerin (SEOM Tagesseminar)
21 October 2016
Speyer (Spirit Code Association ®)
Sabine: If I understand correctly, the real effect of a song arises first through the interplay between music and lyrics. What role does the music play? How and when does this aspect come into play - do you think of the melody as you are jotting down lyrics or does it come at the end, once the lyrics are written?
SEOM: It depends. I will be writing lyrics and then at some point after the melody is composed to add a final touch to the lyrics. I actually prefer to write lyrics to finished compositions, and in order to make this possible I work with composers, in particular pianists who can feel what music is needed. I add my ideas, thoughts and wishes but in the end it is the musicians who compose the melodies. I am always open to new ideas and creative souls.
The interplay between music and text is very important. It is precisely for this reason that the process of creating an album is so time-consuming. Great songs are created through complete harmony between lyrics and music.
Sabine: In your latest album "Spirit" you take on a lot of issues such as confidence in one's own abilities, self-reflection and what life is ultimately really all about - aspects that also play an important role in yoga philosophy. Do you see any overlaps here and who concretely are your songs speaking to?
SEOM: I do see a lot of overlap points. Ultimately, we are talking about the same thing. The only difference is that I transport the information through another channel. At my appearances at yoga festivals I tend to resonate well with the audience which I feel is significant.
I want to guide people to their inner power and to remind them of the peace that flows from a content heart. These aspects are probably likewise very important in yoga. More specifically, the absolute interconnection of all things, the realization that every thought and action has an effect on the whole, I feel are very strong overlapping points in my music and in yoga. That being said I actually want to reach everyone. On the other hand it is clear that perhaps more spiritually-oriented folks will be more receptive and even elated by the fact that they can listen to modern music that speaks to their hearts. My aim is simple: to be able to reach as many people as possible.
Sabine: In your lyrics you often use spiritual terms such as "the Divine in you" and make references to a higher power. How would you describe the Divine? Or rather, what is the divine essence within each of us?
SEOM: Divine essence, to my mind, is the ability to love. We are so sensitive and gentle in nature. If we reveal ourselves behind our masks and armor, we get to know this infinite space of divine love within ourselves.
Everything is an invitation to be loved. Everything vibrates and resonates with joy and love. Every plant, every drop of water, even every stone shares this quality. The essence of divinity for me is the sweet, melodic voice of love which is inherent in all things.
Sabine: You mentioned playing at a number of yoga events. Do you practice yourself? If you do, which tradition of yoga do you practice?
SEOM: I feel at home at yoga festivals and I hope to continue to have more of these opportunities. I have had the chance to run into yoga teachers and practitioners with years of experience. I have to admit that I am still rather ignorant to the practice as such. I have had a daily meditation practice for years. In the last few years I have added a few yoga exercises to my meditation practice. I am always happy to have a chance to learn more and I am really fascinated by yoga as a practice.
Sabine: Aside from your work writing music you have also published a book and give regular seminars. What knowledge are you trying to impart here? Are they separate projects or do they relate directly to your music?
SEOM: My current day seminar is titled "Unfold".
My music is an integral part of every seminar. In each seminar, a two-hour concert is integrated, where each song is relevant to the topic of the seminar itself.
In my seminars each participant is given space to learn to realize his or her dreams and how to make those dreams a reality that serves a purpose in the world. Each of us should learn to recognize an impulse to act, and then, just as a flower blossoms, allow the glory of their potential to unfold. What I really want to do is to help people to find their path.
I lead the participants through meditation techniques using the power of imagination through targeted visualization and guide them in creating personal, effective affirmations and visualizations, which they can apply in their own lives. I explain the universal truths to young and old. Those concepts merge seamlessly and explain, among other things, the art of wholesome thought, the purpose of mindfulness, the strengthening of their beliefs, the awakening of the inner-child, the unfolding of each person's dharma and the balance between lightness and darkness. Other aspects such as self-love and gratitude are also large part of the seminars and are reinforced in related songs.
Sabine: As we reach the end of our interview I would like to touch back on your music and ask you about your upcoming release. Your last album "Spirit" was the 19th album you released. Can you tell us a little bit about the next album?
SEOM: The upcoming album is on a meta plane to "Spirit" and makes direct references back to it.
It deals with issues such as the law of polarity and of inner peace, with which inner balance creates peace in the external world. Moreover, I take time to speak of the miracle of the world. By this I mean the miracles all around us, as well as the miracle that is ourselves. The album is entitled "Emeralds" and was created in cooperation with the great composer and musician Shu, who is incidentally a practicing Yoga teacher from Austria.
Many of my listeners have requested that a few of the older songs be remastered and updated. They are going to be on the album as well. The album contains a lot of classic elements and you will hear a lot of piano and string instruments such as the acoustic guitar. I am really looking forward to the release. We do not have a precise release date yet, but I will be playing a few songs from the album in upcoming concerts so you can experience them first-hand.
If you are interested in learning more, you can find all of the information on my homepage www.seom-music.de
I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for this interview and I am grateful for having the opportunity to talk with you and to share the work I am doing in the name of love.
Sabine: I, too, thank you for your insight. I am really excited about the new release "Emeralds" and I wish you the best of luck on your new projects!