[Exclusive Interview] Milky Day Speaks about His Musical Journey and Future Plans

Milky Day, an emerging artist of Korean-New Zealander descent, is making waves in the realms of lofi and R&B music. Drawing from a rich musical heritage and a diverse background, Milky Day captivates listeners with a fusion of cultural influences. With a solid foundation in classical piano and an academic background in mathematics, having earned a degree from Amherst College, Milky Day brings a unique blend of artistry and analytical thinking to the forefront. This combination, coupled with an unbridled passion for music production, allows Milky Day to create a resonant sound that reflects the contrasting experiences and transformative journey that deeply resonate with the new generation.

I recently spoke to Milky Day for KpopWise to discuss all things music.

Hello, Milky! Can you tell me a bit about yourself and how you became involved in the music industry?
Milky Day: Yea! I'm Milky Day. I'm a singer and songwriter as well as a producer. I'm originally from New Zealand but I live in Sydney now. Although right now I'm in Seoul, Korea. I've kind of done music my entire life. I grew up playing piano since I was like 8 years old. I took part in various musical activities in high school and college. In fact, I studied music in college. It was in college that I started getting into music production and songwriting more deeply. It was a hobby at first. I was making music for fun. But over the years my music started growing traction and my audience grew. It wasn't until last year that I decided to commit to music full-time. So it's been less than a year since I started taking music more seriously, actually.
How would you describe your musical style or genre?
Milky Day: I would describe it as chill and R&B. Some of my earlier music is more lofi and indie. But it's hard to describe my music sometimes because it varies a lot. For example, some of my upcoming stuff has electronic influences as well as house. So it's a variety of styles. But if I had to choose one genre it would be R&B.

Please share some insights into your creative process when writing and composing your songs.

Milky Day: So I usually start off by trying to get into the right mindset. I usually do this by listening to songs by artists I really admire. Or I watch YouTube videos of other music producers and songwriters and observe their process.  Then I get started on music production. I start with chords, I layer some baselines and drums. Then when I have what sounds like a complete loop I listen to it over and over and either I start arranging it by verse or I just start writing. Sometimes, I will start humming or singing random melodies. I'll usually do the melody before the lyrics.
Once I find some melodies and motifs I like, I add lyrics to those melodies, And during this process I tend to picture scenes or tap into a memory or emotion. For example, if it's a sad song I'll lay in bed, stare at the ceiling fan, with the window cracked open and I'll hear the cicadas outside and see the moon shining through the window. It creates a vibe where I'll then visualize what I write about. This process keeps me inspired.

Are there any memorable moments or highlights from your career so far that stand out to you?

Milky Day: I think it would have to be my first song called After Midnight. It did very well. This was back when I was a sophomore in college, about five years ago. That song happened to get play-listed by a YouTuber that I actually used to listen to a lot called Mellowbeat Seeker. I then gained a really big following. I was actually on a spring break trip to Paris at that time. I woke up in  Paris, and I looked at my phone. I was like 'holy crap my song got play listed on this channel!' That's definitely my most memorable moment in my career, for sure.

How do you balance your Korean heritage and New Zealand upbringing in your music and identity as an artist?
Milky Day: On the Korean side I used to listen to a lot of Korean music back in the day, so I definitely draw some influence from Korean music. In fact, I used to incorporate Korean lyrics to some of my older songs. These days I don't use Korean in my music much anymore. I feel more comfortable with English. It feels more like me to write in English. 
On the New Zealand side, it's not a huge music scene there. Although I have met up with and worked with some New Zealand artists here and there. I think the fact I come from two different cultures makes it easier for me to connect with other cultures. And because I travel a lot it makes it easier for me to meet new people and work with them regardless of their ethnicity or cultural background. This all shapes my music in a positive way.

What are some of the messages or themes you aim to convey through your music?

Milky Day: It depends on the song or the style. I've made some upbeat, down tempo, and sad songs etc . But the main message I want to convey to listeners is that when you're going through hard times, whatever it may be, you're not alone in your experience. I get a lot of people messaging me saying things like 'Your music helped me get through really stressful exams,' and 'Your music helped me get past a breakup.' So that made me realize that my music provides an element of comfort to people. That's something that I want to continue doing with future releases as well.

Can you share any upcoming projects or collaborations you're excited about?

Milky Day: I haven't released any music in the last couple of months. But I am really excited about an upcoming single and collaboration with a female artist. I'm not gonna drop any names at the moment. But it's coming up in a month or two.

How has your musical journey evolved since you first started?

Milky Day: A lot has changed! Like my style, I'm exploring different genres. But aside from that, I think my skills have  improved. I've gotten more adventurous in the type of music I create as well as production techniques. My songwriting and melodies have gotten better. The network of creatives that I work with has expanded. Back in the day, it was like I had little collaborations here and there with classmates etc. Now I am traveling to new countries to film music videos with my friends. And that's something that I really enjoy. You know, working with other people is something I live for. I love it!

Any message you'd like to relay to your fans?

Milky Day: I'd like to thank them for supporting me. I'm always getting kind messages from people on Instagram. I'd like them to know that I'm putting 100 percent of myself into my craft and I'm not gonna give up music. It's something that's incredibly meaningful to me. 
Thank you to Milky Day for the wonderful interview!
You can follow Milky on his official Instagram account @itsmilkyday

What did you think of the interview? Let us know. Don't forget to visit KpopWise often for the latest news in Kpop.


Karly B

Karly is a USA-based Entertainment journalist. An ardent K-Pop fan, her favorite groups are BLACKSWAN and SUPERM and her bias’ are NVee and Kai.

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