VOLVR is a multifaceted singer, songwriter, and producer from Tashkent, Uzbekistan. With a musical journey that began at the age of 14, VOLVR has created a diverse body of work that reflects his Central Asian roots while delivering original music in English. He has contributed to various genres, including rock, pop, blues, soul, r&b, and experimental. VOLVR’s career highlights include forming the first electronic/synth-pop duo “Signs” in Central Asia, releasing the album “Fade Away” (named “Debut of the Year”), and working with the Los Angeles label “Sexy Brut.” His upcoming song “Humanz” embodies his desire for a more compassionate society, and his passion extends to inspiring the next generation of Central Asian artists. A humorous episode from his career illustrates the unique challenges he faced as an English-language artist in a region dominated by Uzbek and Russian music.

Interview with VOLVR

Tell us about yourself, who are you and where do you come from?

I am a rising musical artist, VOLVR singer/songwriter/producer, and a native of Central Asia (Tashkent, Uzbekistan). I always knew that I was a musician at heart, and recently I decided to pursue my passion full-time. At the age of 14, in 2003, I began writing songs in English despite being Uzbek and not having any musical background. I wrote, performed, and produced most of my songs myself. Being one of the few artists from Central Asia that makes original music in English I realised my first song in 2008, and in 2010, I released an R&B album at a professional studio; one of the songs from it, “Stupidly in Love,” was recognised by a British publication. Later, I was one of the founders of the first electronic/synth-pop music duo “Signs” in Central Asia, which received wide recognition from music professionals, including Jonas Quant (producer of albums for Hurts’, No Doubt and Leona Lewis. In 2016, I released the album “Fade Away,” and was named “Debut of the Year” according to Mayday Special Edition (Uzbekistan). Since 2018, I have collaborated with the Los Angeles label “Sexy Brut” (USA) under the pseudonym “VOLVR.” The song “Just A Man” was featured on several Spotify Curated Playlists including: Sweet and Soft. Articles include Mlmusic blogs from USA (WolfinaSuit) and Canada (Caesar Live N Loud) . Recently, I released my new song “Juliette & Romeo, an alternative version of the famous love story with a happy ending. It was featured on radio stations: Alternative Lately: WXOJ-LP Northampton 103.3 FM (USA) Shell Zenner show on Amazing Radio UK Kol Hashfela 103.6 FM (Israel). Also on Spotify Playlists: Radar45 (UK), Unique Playlists (Switzerland), Multicolor Records (Netherlands), A.Playlists (Belgium), Spotify Pleasures (Belgium) Playlistsubs (Czech Republic) Mau Sangon (Mexico) We Do Pop Vibes (USA)

How was your passion for music born? Who are your idols?

I was around 5 years old when I saw a music video by Brian Adams on satellite TV that my father brought from Germany. His performance was so captivating that from that minute on, I knew that I wanted to sing. At the age of 6-7, I was introduced to The Beatles by my father, and immediately I became a Beatles fan. Their music was so easy to listen to and understand, using simple words but telling a whole story in each of their songs. I wouldn’t call them my idols, but their music influenced me more than anyone else’s. Subconsciously, they became Jedi Masters, and I’m their Padawan. Yes, I’m a big Star Wars fan. I studied their music, and at the age of 14, I knew that just a passion for singing was not enough, and I wanted to develop myself as a songwriter. Later, when I was older, I read some books about The Beatles and found out that the founding members also started writing songs around that age.

What kind of music do you do?

I don’t like to limit myself to specific music genres because I’ve been influenced by so many different styles and artists. My music can be rock, pop, blues, soul, R&B, or experimental – whatever I feel in the moment. I draw inspiration from my upbringing in Central Asia and try to incorporate some eastern instruments into my music, as seen in my songs “Father’s Home” and “The Fire”. While my sound may not be completely unique, I am one of the few artists from Central Asia making original music in English.

What is the most important song for you? What message do you want to convey to the listener?

My most important song as of today is Humanz,” which has not yet been released but will hopefully be available on my album, which is set to come out in the fall of 2023. With Humanz,” I explored the idea of embracing our humanity and questioning societal norms and judgements. The lyrics highlight the desire to live authentically and freely without conforming to the expectations and restrictions imposed by others. The song challenges the notion of right and wrong, suggesting that humans should be able to make their own choices and care for one another, even if it goes against societal norms. It emphasises the need for acceptance, love, and understanding in a world that often prioritises hate, destruction, and faith. Ultimately, “Humanz” calls for a more compassionate and inclusive society where individuals can be true to themselves without fear of judgement or pretence.

Why should a listener who doesn’t know you listen to your music?

I’ve always asked myself why I want to dedicate my life to music. Many answer this question with the common phrase that music is part of them and their soul. This has never reflected my purpose; I wanted music to become my instrument to have a social voice, impact the community, and have a personal connection with people. I want to be a part of a community that grows and evolves into something beyond self-realisation. Being passionate about a future that is full of opportunities for everyone, I have set myself a goal to become the exception that will open up the door for others. To inspire the young generation of artists from Central Asia and pave the way for new aspiring creators. Many creators struggle and, in most cases, quit music, especially in Central Asia, as there is a common stereotype that it is impossible to be successful creating music specifically in English. Music is a universally understood language, through which powerful cultural, moral, and emotional messages can be delivered to society. There are many talented people in Central Asia that are ready to influence it, and I’m sure that united, we can create a better cultural society. I think fans of The Beatles, Harry Styles, Hozier, Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, Arctic Monkeys, and Maroon 5 would enjoy my songs.

What are your future projects? Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?

My recent plan is to finish my first album and do some touring, then do a couple more albums in more blues and rock genres for a more mature audience. The next step would be to concentrate more on songwriting and production. Writing songs for big artists as well as discovering and helping upcoming artists achieve their dreams and goals. To create opportunities for musicians by organising Music Festivals in Central Asia.

Tell our readers a funny episode that happened in your career as an artist.

Being an artist who makes original songs in English in a country where the main languages are Uzbek and Russian already sounds absurd. Moreover, in Uzbekistan, there is no Show Business but rather “Toy Business, which stands for Wedding Business. Mainly, artists here make songs specifically for weddings in Uzbek, as that’s their main source of income. On the other side of this spectrum are singers and bands that sing only covers or karaoke versions of popular songs. So, artists who don’t fit into any of those standards perform in underground bars and venues or do pop songs that are oriented towards Russia. I have gotten millions of comments from people over the course of years asking why I don’t write songs in my “native” language. Once, a relative told me that he would invest money in my music, but only if I sang in Uzbek and the songs were energetic so people could dance at a wedding. So, I replied: Me: Do you like Sting? Him: I love Sting! Me: Would you go to a Sting concert if he came to Uzbekistan? Him: Of course, no doubt. Me: At the concert, will you dance and have fun? Him: No, because at Sting’s concert, you have to listen and enjoy. Me:Well, I make that type of music as well. He said, Well, you are not Sting! Me: (Even Sting was not Sting in the beginning.)