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Interviews Quarantine

Staying Wholesome with Hojean

Hojean. Photo courtesy of Hojean.

Like many of us during this turbulent pandemic, I have become quite accustomed to the everyday homebody lifestyle. Waking up a quarter to lunchtime, slinking my way out of bed, only to end up mindlessly droning on social media until the early morning-–wash, rinse, and repeat for the next day. I haven’t worn real pants since the beginning of 2020 (thank goodness for athleisure leggings!) and I’m running out of comfy oversized Target sweaters. But while I’ve enjoyed being the ideal couch potato, Korean American singer-songwriter Hojean has made strides by optimizing his time by not only producing new music but also creating new opportunities to interact with his fans.

Hojean effortlessly integrates sensual R&B beats sprinkled with pastel hues in his songs, allowing him to create the ideal recipe for comfy bedroom pop that should grace anyone’s driving playlist. His soulful vocals will help you de-stress and melt into a pool of euphoric bliss after any hard-working day. What kept me sane this past season after long shifts followed by bumper-to-bumper LA traffic was the track “Over 85.” That song transported me back to the 90s with its unique blend of Sixpence None the Richer “Kiss Me” nostalgia paired with the sensuality of early 2000s R&B. 

But outside of his music, the strongest impression Hojean left on me was how he dedicated much of his success to his fans. “I could not have been the person I am today without the love and support of my family, friends, and supporters,” he tells me. “At the end of the day, I am my best me because I feel driven to do my best for them”. 

How have you been keeping busy during these tough times?

hojean selfie
Photo courtesy of Hojean.

I’ve been taking the time to write more music. I released my latest single “weekends” at the end of 2020 and when it amassed over 100,000 streams within the first month, I was elated. Other than that, I’ve been more intentional with engaging more with my supporters on Twitter and started to stream on Twitch to talk to them more.

How did you know music was your passion? What keeps you motivated?

I have always been creative ever since I was a kid. I discovered this through occasionally singing while I was growing up in New York. The catalyst that started it all is a story I’ve told before, but basically there was this talent show at my school and I participated to impress my crush at the time. 

What keeps me motivated to continue to do music is the thrill of performing but also the joy of meeting new people. Just the thought that I can make everyone proud and find a secure and stable spot for myself is what drives me. Another part of why it’s exciting to be in music right now for me is, I hope to be a leader for the ever-growing AAPI artist community that has yet to set this music stage on fire. I’m a proud Korean American singer-songwriter and for me to make my mark in history is just as exciting as anything! 

What makes you happy?

The simple things in life make me happy. These days it’s catching up and playing games with my friends when I can. Scrolling through what my fans react to on my Twitter account. All in all, I’m confident who I’ve become and being comfortable in my own skin. I’m not trying to be someone else. I’m unapologetically me and I trust the people in my music. 

hojean chillin
Photo courtesy of Hojean.

What are you looking forward to most this year?

I’m really excited to see what growth awaits me this year. Growth in my relationships, happiness, and music. If I can continue to reach out to more people through my music, that’s something I can’t wait to see happen. I want to be able to reach out to everyone and if they can relate, then all the better. 

When you hit a roadblock in production, how do you resolve it?

My friends are my biggest supporters. Whenever I get in a rut and I can’t seem to shake it, my friends help me to re-center myself. In case you wondered what it looks like when I’m in this kind of state, go to my Twitter feed. If I spam a lot of messages in a short amount of time, it’s usually because I’m in a funk or needing to re-center myself–come interact with me on Twitter!

Your songs are a mixture of romantic R&B: dreamy, soothing for the soul type of sounds. Do you consider yourself a romantic?

I would say I don’t go around looking for relationship. For me, I don’t really think I need to be in one. With that being said, when I am in one, I’m very much lovey-dovey. My music so far has reflected that. 

Do you have anything else to say to your supporters (To the HoJeaners, Hojean Army, Hojean stans etc.) 

To my supporters, believers, HoJeaners, thank you for continuing to support me and my music. I can’t appreciate it enough of what your existence means to me. I find it a privilege being able to be vulnerable with this family that exists on the Internet. Please continue to support me; I promise it’ll be worth it in the end. 

One last note, I want to give a shoutout to my Manager’s Mom (GemzByLisa)! She raised someone who is now one of my biggest supporters and I want to show her love. Please go follow her on Instagram: @gemzbylisaandpatti

hojean in the market
Photo courtesy of Hojean.

You can find Hojean on his socials:   

Be sure to follow me on Spotify!

Follow me on Twitter & Instagram: @yihojean / @yihojean

Tiktok: @hojeanbaby 

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_LZRvNEH76JoU3chaY86xg

Twitch: https://www.twitch.tv/hojean

Come hangout with me live, every Wednesday and Saturday at 9pm EST! 

This interview was conducted via Zoom by Lexy Pang on January 8, 2021.


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