You might remember that just in time for Christmas, Nuno released a cover of I’ll Be Home for Christmas (which I very happily included in my holiday mix), and hopefully it brought you as much holiday cheer as me.
So hey, read on to find out more about the singer behind that little gem, how much he appreciates his home country and who was his Portuguese icon.
How did you first get into making music?
My passion for music sprouted at a very young age, but it wasn’t until my late teenage years that I began making music and taking it a bit more seriously. At first, I was only doing covers and posting them on YouTube, but I always wanted to sing original songs and perform live. So, in order to make it happen, I started having singing lessons, done a bit of performing in my local area (still in Madeira) and at the age of twenty-four I moved to London from Portugal to pursue a career in music.
What are your favourite genres to listen to?
I’m a pop stan primarily (think Lady Gaga, Troye Sivan, Rihanna…) but I also listen to indie and alternative music all the time.
Any kind of music you don’t really listen to?
I don’t listen to Reggaeton. Just not my cup of tea, I guess. sips nervously 🍵
How do you get inspiration for your music?
I’m a very visual person, so part of my inspiration comes from my surroundings and the people around me in London. My biggest inspiration however is my hometown, Madeira. I’m pretty lucky to be from an island where there is plenty of inspiration everywhere. I’m very much inspired by nature, landscapes, the mountains, the ocean, the harbour, the beaches, and I’ve always preferred the warm and sunny weather, which is why I always come back home once in a while. Visiting Madeira always fill me up with ideas for my music, and sometimes a simple walk on the promenade or the beach can do miracles.
What is your creative process? If you write your own melodies & lyrics, which is your favourite to do?
My creative process differs from song to song, but I would say most of the time I start with chords, build a melody from there and only add the lyrics later. But I’ve also done it the other way around before, so it really depends on the track honestly. My favourite thing to do, though, is writing lyrics.
Which three artists would you say have influenced your music the most?
David Bowie, Lady Gaga and probably Troye Sivan.
Give us a five word description of your latest release.
Christmas, but make it gay.
If (when!) your music was to be used in movies, what sort of movies would you like to see it in? Any directors in particular?
Oh, I’d love to see my music used in a Luca Guadagnino film. He’s one of my favourite directors. I love his cinematography, and I think my music could easily fit in one of his queer coming-of-age dramas (did I hear anyone say Call Me By Your Name sequel?).
It’s safe to say that there are more openly LGBT artists nowadays than ever before. What does seeing so much representation mean to you?
It means more competition. No, I’m joking. It means more competition, but it also means that we are moving. The music industry is moving in the right direction (even if veeery slowly). That gives me hope for the future, knowing that the next generation will have more positive queer role models than I did when I was growing up. And maybe, just maybe, one day I could be that person to someone.
Rec us some of your favourite LGBT artists
There are dozens of people I could mention: River Westin, with whom I collaborated recently [on I’ll Be Home For Christmas], has one of the most stunning voices I have heard and always does beautiful music. Florian Rose, the exact same thing. Andrea Di Giovanni, Kennen, Vardaan Arora, Michael Medrano, Product, tip/toe, Bryce Bowyn, HULLAH, Yavin, Jxckson, Kisos… How some of these people have not gained global recognition yet is beyond me. They sure deserve more attention.
What’s one piece of advice you would like to give your younger self?
The exact same one I’d give to my present self: Don’t procrastinate. Get to it and do it. Just do it.
If you could have dinner with one member of the LGBT community, dead or alive, who would it be?
There is this Portuguese singer-songwriter called António Variações. He died before I was even born, but I feel like I could have learned so much from him. He was very camp, very flamboyant, and ahead of his time. I’m sure I would have the time of my life hearing his crazy life stories.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Nuno Freitas is an independent Portuguese LGBTQ+ artist based in London, who last year alone has released five singles, which have been featured on several playlists in countries like Canada, Portugal, Brazil, the US, and the UK.
Culture Fix has described Nuno’s latest solo release, “Arcadia” as “a slice of anthemic queer pop with an intellectual edge” and “staggeringly earthy poetic imagery”.
Nuno is set to release his first EP of original songs in 2021, written by himself and his musical partner, Fiorenzo Palermo, and featuring a host of exciting producers.