“If you want to do it the easy way, you should definitely not go to America.”
This admission is made by Maria Apetri, better known as Denmark’s resident indie-pop chanteuse Fallulah. Apetri is calling from New York, where she’s performing at Left Field on Saturday night (Oct. 19) as part of the CMJ Music Marathon. She’s in the city alone — “I travel by myself most of the time,” she says — and is planning to treat herself to a movie. “I’m going to see ‘Don Jon,’ I think it’s called,” she tells Billboard. “I really like that guy Joseph Gordon-Levitt. He’s cool.”
Fallulah does not necessarily have to be navigating the perils of America and its cinematic offerings; in fact, the 28-year-old singer-songwriter is a legitimate star in her native country. Born outside of Copenhagen, Apetri signed a two-album deal with Sony in Denmark and released her debut album, “The Black Cat Neighbourhood,” in 2010. Featuring the melodic, folk-strewn singles “Out Of It” and “I Lay My Head,” the album is perfect fodder for fans of strong, sardonic pop songwriters like Kate Nash and Lily Allen.
“Out Of It” was a hit in Denmark, eventually earning the “Hit of The Year” trophy at the Danish equivalent of the Grammys in 2011 and also being used as the theme music to the overseas TV hit “Lykke.” But Fallulah wanted more.
“I always had this longing to get out in the world,” she says. “It’s been kind of hard — I haven’t been stuck [in Denmark], but I wanted to play shows and people wanted to see me there. I’ve actually invested all of the money that I’ve made in Denmark into going to [America].”
Fallulah, now without a label or management, has performed at the past two South By Southwest festivals, and her CMJ show comes on the heels of pop duo MS MR’s remix of her song “Dragon.” Although the singer-songwriter doesn’t know when she’ll properly release an album in the U.S., she’ll stay busy writing new songs and keeping her focus solely on stateside success.
“It’s just what I’ve always wanted to do,” says Fallulah of bringing her music outside of Denmark. “It was my starting point when I wanted to put out music. I wanted to communicate with the world.”
Watch Fallulah’s music video for “Give Us A Little Love,” which has earned 1.5 million YouTube views, below: