Choose Lenka's list

Choose Lenka's list

Mellow or not, Lenka's Hong Kong fans can choose what they want

Should the music an artist plays at a gig be what they want to perform, or what their fans wish to hear? For Australian singer-songwriter Lenka, it is the latter.

On November 5, Lenka Kripac will play at Kitec. But this won't be your average concert: for this performance, the set list will be decided by her Hong Kong fans.

"This could be completely crazy. It's [something I'm trying for the first time here] in Hong Kong," Lenka tells Young Post over the phone.

While the singer will compile part of the set list herself, Lenka will leave room for fans to vote for what they want to hear on an online platform on by Yahoo Hong Kong. Each voter gets to suggest a song, then the votes will be combined, together with recent searches related to the singer and her music, to generate a final, customised song list.

The electropop musician first appeared on the world stage after releasing her eponymous debut album in 2008. Her style is defined by unique, bouncy, playful melodies powered by mostly synthesised sounds. Although Lenka has so far failed top any charts, her albums are very well received by her fans - and other less obvious listeners.

Even Microsoft has taken an interest. After her track Everything at Once, taken from her her second album, Two, made the Top 10 download list on iTunes, the company snapped it up to use as a jingle to promote its Windows 8 operating system.

Earlier this year, the singer released her third album, Shadows.

"I'm going to play new songs from Shadows, as well as some of my old songs, which will be reimagined in a different way to suit the new sound," says Lenka of her upcoming show.

Whether the audience likes it or not, the singer jokes, hit tracks like The Show and Everything at Once will be performed. She asks that people pick her more obscure songs, or her B-side tracks.

The singer is confident that her Asian fan base will surprise her by coming up with an unconventional playlist. In Asia, she says, "there's more hunger for those kinds of tracks, like covers and acoustic versions".

The singer also finds that her Asian fans tend to gravitate towards sounds that are real, and a bit more intimate.

"It's actually the more simple stuff that resonates with the Asian audience," she says.

Western fans, on the other hand, tend to prefer more sophisticated recordings with complex post-production work.

As for her own choices, says Lenka, "there is one that I've never done from the second album that I would like to do. It's called The End of the World".

Another track that she's looking forward to playing is Two Heartbeats, from her latest album. This track is written from the perspective of a one-and-a-half-year-old. And not just any one-and-a-half-year-old, but Lenka's own.

Since Young Post last caught up with Lenka in 2011, she has become a mum.

"I took a bit of a break and did the baby thing, but I was still writing songs," she says.

Shadows, which she describes as a "lullaby" album, sounds calm and mature, largely inspired by her experience of pregnancy and raising her little boy.

Lenka says parenthood has changed her in many ways, including causing her to reflect more on herself. She feels that her music style has changed accordingly. Shadows' introspective messages are a good example of this.

But Lenka guarantees that fans will still see the happy, light side of her they are familiar with.

Reassuringly, she says: "In fact, lately, I've been writing songs that are way more upbeat."

Lenka, she says, will always be Lenka.

If you want to have a say in what Lenka should play, visit

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- Owl City, aka Adam Young, shares with Young Post about his many inspirations, both real and imagined, for his music

- Singer Lenka takes us to a girly world of fairy tales and fantasy in Shadows



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