Earlier this year, K-R&B songstress Suran made her biggest career move yet. After parting from her former label, Million Market, she founded her own independent label, S-TASY, and recruited a team of like-minded creatives who shared her vision. Donning the titles of singer-songwriter, producer, and founder, Suran went on to successfully release her digital single, “Sunny” followed by her latest release, “Blanket” under this new venture. “Both singles ‘Sunny’ and ‘Blanket’ express my vision for S-TASY which literally stands for ‘Suran’s fantasy’ – fantasies that blur the lines between reality and dreams,” she explained. “I’m just trying to focus on myself and my music more freely and enjoy this new journey of building my new path step by step.”
However, the new venture presents a fresh set of responsibilities and challenges. She admitted, “Being my own boss is… I don’t know yet because all of it is still so new to me.” Aside from having full creative control of her music, she also juggles the duties that come with running an entertainment company, such as business management, marketing, promotions, etc. “Being an artist and songwriter/producer and boss at the same time hasn’t been simple or easy. There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes and I’m trying to focus on each thing one by one. Hopefully, we will improve and expand with every new step!”
Using her creativity, passion, and perseverance, she hopes that her company will release music that will resonate with avid listeners around the world. “My goals for S-TASY are to release a lot of inspiring music while pursuing my dreams and creating and promoting my ‘S-TASY’ world as a fun fantasy ‘island’ that fans and listeners can visit for their entertainment, joy and escape. I want to make something wonderful happen, make beautiful art and treat my listeners around the world with great music and hope/inspiration.”
Those driving principles are displayed in “Blanket,” the playful, pop track inspired by her life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Co-written by Suran and featured rapper, Wonstein, the song zigzags between the desire to go out and have fun and the realization that it’s best to chill at home and find comfort through other means. “Creating “Blanket” was a fun and cozy process just like the song’s mood and everything came together naturally,” she commented on her songwriting process.
Out of the entire production process, recording the background vocals in the hooks was her favorite part. “My intention was to make it sound kind of like Casper the friendly ghost or child-like/fun (the ‘Yeah! Yeah~ Hoo!’ parts). We even put in real fireworks sounds in the track for a more festive vibe and working on these details/textures was really fun and perfect for the mood.” With the relatable lyrics and the fun melodies, “Blanket” illustrates how to make the most of a bad situation. Cozy up under your favorite blanket, watch some Netflix, let your dreams and imagination run free, and create new memories to cherish.
For Shin Suran, music became a constant variable in her life from a young age. “I always loved singing since I was a child and was a fan of many artists so I developed my love for music very naturally over time.” While pursuing a degree in computer science, she began to discover her true calling. In 2010, she took her first dip into music under the alias Bailey Shoo. In 2014, she found her way into ATC Entertainment, debuting under the duo, Lodia, and adopting the stage name Elena. Later that same year, she made her solo debut with “I Feel” under her moniker Suran. In 2015, she joined Million Market where she would spend several years developing her sound and releasing jazz, R&B, and indie hits alongside other notable artists in the industry.
Suran’s pursuit of her passions led to her being a well-decorated singer-songwriter and producer. Her unique and distinct vocal tone gained widespread attention, landing her features and collaboration with artists such as Bumkey, Beenzino, Heize, Dean, and more. Reflecting on her extensive repertoire, she shared with us her favorite lyrics that she penned.
In “Wine,” a single co-produced alongside BTS’ Suga, she chose lines from the chorus: “너에게 취해 이밤에 취해 (I’m drunk with you / I’m drunk with this night).” In “Love Story,” her heart-fluttering single featuring Crush, she selected the opening lyrics” “어느날 우연히 널 만났죠 / 보고싶어 그렇게 사랑이 왔죠 (I met you one day by chance / I wanted to look at you. That’s how I started to love you).”
“Both lyrics are inspired by my real feelings and experiences and I usually prefer to write things from feelings in the moment that I want to remember forever. Kind of like a good photo or precious feeling – I want to put that into a box and share it with everyone,” she commented.
When asked to recall her earliest memory of falling in love with music, Suran cited her early days as a jazz vocalist when she gained opportunities to sing with several bands and players. Improvisation, a key element in jazz music, makes space for creative expression by building on existing resources and injecting one’s own creative flair and personality to breathe new life to the song. She shared, “I learned how to sing with improvisation and I think that helped me fall even more in love with the joy of singing by myself on every stage.” After those experiences, she realized that she strived to express herself through music and performances in a broader, artistic context. “When I wrote my first song ‘I Got A Feeling’ for Lodia, it was officially released and that’s how the artist career I envisioned started – simply through passion and creating.”
“My entire journey feels like a hike over various shapes of peaks in search of new heights,” she shared. “Some are long hikes over steep mountains and some hikes feel like a heaven in the clouds.” Suran summed up her journey through music as simply being unpredictable. Over the years she adopted various stage names and developed a deeper love and understanding for her craft in the process. As Bailey Shoo, she naturally fell into music while singing all the time. As Elena of Lodia, she began to freely create music, fueled by her burning desire and passion to grow as an artist. Now as Suran, she shared, “Suran’s artist way feels like it’s parallel to my life journey – I think it’s because Suran is my real name!”
Jumping head first into something new can be daunting. That first big leap can present challenges and obstacles, but can also pave a way to more opportunities. On this topic, Suran shared her two-cents: “I sympathize with that struggle too and I guess the pandemic gave us plenty of time to explore and reflect,” she started. “My advice for making the big first leap is that it’s important to see the big picture, plan well and take action. Above all else, I think there should be no fear.”
“Be myself no matter what happens” is what Suran shared was the best piece of advice that she has ever received. To her past self, Suran wishes to say, “Whatever you’ve been through, that’s you. I’m proud of you, I love you.” And to her future self, she would like to say, “If you’re still dreaming, that’s the ‘me’ I wanted. Enjoy everything and live a wonderful life!” Lastly to her fans, she had this to say:
“Time flies so quickly. Everything is getting better now and I’m sorry for making you wait so long for the album and stage too. I want to say that I always did the best I could in each moment. I always hope we can meet on stage anywhere someday! Miss you all and thank you so much. Well then, stay safe (with a Blanket!) and hope we can meet soon :)”
“Blanket” is available now on all major streaming platforms. Stream the single on Spotify below and be sure to follow Suran and S-TASY on their social media accounts below:
Thank you to Suran, S-TASY, and Helix Publicity for the interview opportunity! Stay tuned for our “Get to Know SURAN” content coming out on our Instagram soon!