Q&A – Madden

His debut became an instant hit with more than 69 million plays on Spotify. Now, Madden has released the video for his second single Alive, shot in the breathtaking natural surroundings of Lofoten in northern Norway. Here, Norwegian Arts gets to know this shooting star a little better.


Q: What’s in the name «Madden»?
A: I was called “Madde” by some friends during high school, so that’s where it came from. For me “Madden” represents some values that are important to me. To dare to be somewhat crazy and pursue new ideas and goals, to keep pushing and develop something you believe in. To meet people with an open and collaborative attitude, and to be inspired by their uniqueness.

Q: How did it feel to go from Eurovision Jr contestant to 65 million Spotify streams overnight?
A: Really awesome and exciting! You put much effort into a song to get it feel right to you, so when people respond good to it and let it become a part of their daily life, it’s a wonderful feeling. Trying to visualize numbers at that size makes you pretty humble to!

Q: Tell us about this video, how did it come about?
A: Me, co-producer Kid Joki and A&R Mike Herbrik had a brainstorm on it. Song was just finished, so the creative vibe of the song was really fresh, and we just wanted the video to capture the passion and adrenaline we had felt while working it. I think the song has a sound and arrangement that quickly made us think about the mountains, it’s calm and open, but at the same time it has quite steep curves towards the peaks of the song. Field Productions, who produced the movie, had a guy sitting in the studio next to us at the time, who was clipping scenes for their upcoming movie Supervention 2. When it turned out that Warner Music also had connections to Field Productions, we approached them about teaming up, and at the end they delivered this beautiful video that we all really love and feel proud of.

Madden1_Fotograf Stephen Butkus

Madden, or Marius Njøstad. Photo: Stephen Butkus

Q: And you: Surf or snow?
A: Growing up in Norway, I’d say snow, I love cross country and downhill skiing!

Q: What makes you feel Alive?
A: Music, love, friendship/teamwork and new experiences!!

Q: Where would you most like to be in five years?
A: In five years, I hope to have released a couple of albums, and that music gives me the opportunity to travel. There are so many inspiring cultures in the world, and I believe experiencing such through touring has an awesome influence on any artist’s music. So I really hope to get there at a point. Norway is my home, so that’s where I’ll have my base, but if I could spend some months each year working in music metropols such as Los Angeles, that would of course be really cool.

Q: Tell us something no one knows about Madden!
A: Hm.. Well, I have this framed picture of Mars at the desk in my studio. I get so inspired by all the progress being made in space science, and during breaks in the studio, I watch news about space technology and physics. I usually bring the picture of Mars with me when I go to other studios to, and place it in some corner of the room. It’s a bit random, haha, but I guess it just makes me inspired and focused.

Q: What’s next?
A: At the moment, I’m working on several new songs. I’m collaborating with amazing people in Norway, Sweden and the UK, having a great time! Early 2017, I’ll bring in live musicians and we’ll start arranging the strongest material into a live show. Then we hope to do a bunch of fun concerts next summer and take it from there!

Check out Madden’s latest single below!

Top photo: Iselin Tara Rathke