While attempting to write his third studio album, House on a Hill, Eric Nam came across a few creative road blocks after being left with few inspiring experiences during the pandemic, and jumping into touring right after. But one day of home shopping ended up changing the trajectory of his writing, and shaped the album altogether, he reveals in the latest episode of Billboard News.
“I wanted to buy a house and I saw a beautiful house on a hill. Ended up not getting it, but in that songwriting session we started to discuss, ‘Why do we all want a house? Why do we want to own a house?’ It’s multifaceted,” Nam told host Tetris Kelly about how the record began to take shape. “They say it’s the best way to accumulate wealth. Is it a status symbol? Is it a sense of identity and purpose in a physical place? That kind of led us down a spiral of talking about what makes us really happy and what drives us as people.”
House on a Hill sees Nam at his most creatively invested — in addition to being fully involved with the songwriting and production process, he helmed the album’s entire music video production, which as a whole views as a short film.
“I think I’ve always been pretty involved in my album, but this one was particularly involved because not only was it the music and the entire songwriting and production process, but it also extended to the multiple music videos, the short film, the photos and everything,” he explained. “I think naturally as an ambitious person, I try to elevate and upgrade every album. So, ‘How do we beat the last album?’ That was my biggest homework for this project.”
Nam stated that the most arduous process of bringing the album to life was making a music video for multiple songs on House on a Hill “wasn’t easy” due to being an independent artist.
“I come from the world of K-pop. When you look at K-pop videos, there’s always CGI with things flying in outer space with fighting imaginary monsters. … I, as a solo artist and an independent artist, don’t have the ability to do that. I was like, ‘What can I do that can allow me to flex every muscle of my creative mind?’ I thought, ‘Why not write and script out multiple music videos and then turn it into a short film that plays with the themes of House on a Hill — being happy, finding contentment, being sad, being alone, all those types of emotions,” he explained.
House on a Hill was released Sept. 8 and debuted at No. 66 on Billboard‘s Top Album Sales chart. The singer is currently on tour in support of the album, making stops in North and Latin America through Dec. 9 before heading over to Europe, U.K and parts of Asia in 2024.
Watch Nam’s interview with Billboard News in the video above.
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