Nina Monroy is a talented Guatemalan/American singer/songwriter based out of Los Angeles. Exposed to diverse cultural influences growing up, she fuses her expansive knowledge into her heart-felt lyricism and individual sound. She makes her debut with the release of “Mood Ring”, a dreamy alternative pop track that focuses on reclaiming control of your life when trapped in a dependent relationship.
Comparable to superstar Billie Eilish, Nina Monroy gives off an ambient and mellow vibe throughout “Mood Ring”. Her overall melancholic tone is authentic and one of a kind. “Mood Ring” is a melodically satisfying and instrumentally unique piece of alternative pop, one that introduces Nina Monroy as having a clear love for this style of music. While there’s a relatable underlying sentiment to the lyrics, this merely helps make the song more widely accessible. Everything from the title to the verses and the structure of the track leans just enough so back and forth between that mainstream vibe and something a little left of the expected. Balance is crucial, and this release from Nina Monroy has mastered it.
Listen to “Mood Ring” here and read more with Nina Monroy in our interview!
Welcome to BuzzMusic Nina! How would you describe your sound and your approach to songwriting?
Out of everything I have experienced during the process of becoming an artist, this is the part I’ve enjoyed the most. Before working with Nicolas Farias, the producer of Mood Ring, I was worried that my love for various genres would make it difficult to find my sound, but with Nico I’ve found the ability to implement my favorite characteristics from each one to create a unique experience. We’ve discovered sounds that we both identify with while still being able to express my own feelings through the music. I love a nostalgic 80’s synth with the modern implementations of 808’s to balance the mellowness with a badass sound. We both love sweet, liberating minor chord songs, bold transitions and dynamic arrangements and you can definitely feel that in Mood Ring.
As for my approach to songwriting, I don’t really have a specific way I write because I constantly write down things that go through my mind in my day to day life. That’s the key for me, always having something to write on whether it be my notebook, my phone or a receipt I find at the bottom of my purse. I’ve always been an “in my head” kind of person, like every artist is, but it used to scare me and just give me anxiety. I’ve learned to use the thoughts in my head to benefit me rather than bring me down. I love clever word play and poetry so once I know I have something good going, I get together with Nico and we find a melody that fits with the feelings I express.
Who or what would you say inspires you the most, creatively?
This also worried me because I find inspiration from so many places and I didn’t know what to focus on. Whether it be art, movies or other musicians, I seem to find little things from each that inspire me to be the best version of an artist I can be.
Frank Ocean’s music has always inspired me and gotten me through some tough times in my life. I really look up to him as an artist for pouring his feelings out to make beautiful music.
I used to live in Miami before moving to LA so I was heavily exposed to the art world, especially when Art Basel season came along. Over the course of six years living there, I fell in love with so many different artists but Ed Ruscha always stood out for me because of the colors and clever word play he chose to portray in his art. I always felt like Mark Rothko and David Hockney were also sources of inspiration because of the feelings their art cause.
Television and film also inspire me very much; I’m currently obsessed with the HBO show Euphoria, I find each character so deep and impacting. Any art form that causes me to feel deeply inspires me to bring out the best of my creative abilities.
“Mood Ring” seems to have a deep, personal backstory, about a relationship gone wrong. What was the songwriting process like for this? Do you ever worry about disclosing too much, or is it better to just go with the flow when writing?
The song writing process was so beautiful for Mood Ring because I put together various notes I had written down that at the time I had no idea I was coming up with a whole story to tell, I was just putting my thoughts in to words. When I noticed that once gathered the notes I had in to one, I began to create one story out of moments when I was sitting in the car at a car wash, walking though the grocery store or even at a concert.
I honestly didn’t even blink at the thought of disclosing too much because the feelings were so fresh and I just wanted to get them out my system. The fact that I am able to do that in a beautiful, artistic way is amazing and just makes me excited rather than afraid of having these feelings.
What are your main aspirations as an artist?
I want to get to a point where I am able to inspire others to believe in themselves and their own craft, like Frank Ocean. That’s really all I want besides being the best singer I can be and prove to myself that I can do all the things I love. Five months ago, I dreamed of being where I am today and all it took was hard work, dedication and believing in myself, so I just want to keep blowing my own mind. I also want to be able to represent my country, Guatemala, in a positive way because the media only shares the negative parts of a third world country. I’d like to show the world that there are artists that come out of it’s troubled situations.
What’s next for you?
I feel like I have a lot to give besides music, but for now I’m writing my next few songs and hope to release about three more before this year comes to an end. Honestly, I go through life just living in the moment and don’t have a specific goal I want to reach; I feel like a goal is an end and I just want to keep striking, keep blowing my own mind.
Connect with Nina through social media!