EXCLUSIVE: Kian Blume Talks “Daphne” and New Orchestral Pop Sound

Dance fans may recognize Kian Blume from his Billboard charting debut “Stop the Show.” Four years later, Kian is making an epic departure from his dance sound into a lush cinematic soundscape fit for the movies.

In the early days of the pandemic, Kian was put on mandatory vocal rest. However, following doctor’s orders proved to be more difficult than expected as a new song was brewing. Unable to hold back the flowing lyrics and melodies, Kian defied orders and unleashed his self-described “magnum opus.”

That defiance almost cost him his music career, as his vocals soon after hemorrhaged. However sweet serendipity swooped in and it just so happened that his Otolaryngologist introduced him to his ultimate writing and production partner Michael Orland ( American Idol) and later, his producer Miklos Malek (Jennifer Lopez, Anastacia). 

His latest single “Daphne” is an orchestral pop love ballad that highlights that new authentic sound and aims to resurrect a level of artistry lacking in current pop. 

We chatted with the multi-hyphenate about the single, his new sound, and what fans can look forward to next! 

What inspired your new single “Daphne”?

“Daphne” is a song that was inspired by a person I knew many years ago. I was inspired by the emotions I felt back then, and also certain imagery that I associate the relationship with. It’s actually like a nostalgic look back into my life when it was simpler and I was younger.

Can you share the story of the defiant and serendipitous writing and production process for this track, including how you got connected with your collaborator Michael Orland ( American Idol) ? 

I had written “Daphne” during a stint of vocal rest after a big injury. I was so excited about the melody that I sang anyway. This caused me to hemorrhage further, and I consulted with an incredible ENT who saved my voice and introduced me to the amazing Michael Orland. Michael and I started working together and I sent  him “Daphne” Then he brought in the brilliant producer Miklos Malek. The process was so fast and natural, and collaborating with these incredible people has been a life changing experience.

You’ve described this song as your “magnum opus.” Why is this particular song so important to you? 

I think this is my most complete and authentic song so far. I really love all aspects of the song. The melody, the lyrics, and the arrangement are exactly what I envisioned. “Daphne” is musically complex, but it still remains true to its theme and also is sensible and pleasant for the listener. I also really felt happy to write a more poetic lyric instead of a conversational one.

What inspired you to move away from the dance sound that we heard on your Billboard charting single “Stop the Show,” and towards a more cinematic and baroque pop sound ?

I’ve always really enjoyed more dense harmony and rangey melodies. I just love crafting songs in a compositional way. So this cinematic pop sound is more authentic to my musical vision.

You started writing songs at 15 based on your poetry. In your current process, do you still start with lyrics or does melody usually come first? 

In my current process, I usually write melodies before lyrics, or I will sing a lyrical phrase with a melody simultaneously. Very rarely do I write lyrics first now. I’ve taken the stance that the melody is king. Changing the melody to fit the lyrics, can ruin a beautiful melody but the opposite isn’t true. So most often I write melody first.

If you could set fans up in the perfect environment to listen to the single, what do you imagine it looking like? 

I think that “Daphne” sounds the best with headphones and also in the car. The listener will be able to experience the emotional and dynamic roller coaster ride better if they are fully immersed in it. It’s a great song to just get lost in while listening.

What can fans look forward to next? 

I have another single called “Parasite.” It’s a fun uptempo electronic pop song.

What is one quote that you have heard or that you go by that you want to ECHO out to the world? 

Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.

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