Bastian Steel, you might know him way before since he and his boyband was a big hit few years back. It has been several years since the boyband split, and now Bastian Steel got himself a rebranding phase with the help from Upi Tuantigabelas. Now he is 19 years old and is flying solo, taking a whole new genre of music with a new single called “Take It Slow” released on September this year.
Dish out about “Take It Slow”, is it a single or one of the songs from your new upcoming album?
“It’s just a single, because actually it wasn’t initially part of my plan to release it. This is my first hiphop song, produced by Sledgren, which is also the producer of Wiz Khalifa. At first, I thought this project wouldn’t go smoothly because Sledgreen and I have time differences, distance issue and many other aspects, but as it turns out he was also excited and serious about this project, so since all good, the single was finally released.”
From pop to hiphop, how was the difference and how do you feel so far?
“This is my first taste of hiphop. Very much relief. Because to be honest, I love hiphop in the first place but I have yet to have the courage to release hip hop songs. Also, I wasn’t in too deep with the hip hop world, and I think hip hop has a strong scene for those who are familiar with it in the first place, so if you fail at this, you will fail forever. That’s why I’ve been waiting for the perfect moment until I finally get this amazing chance, and for me this is one of the best steps I could take to brace myself into the hip hop world.”
Now that you have all grown up, how has the transition been going for you?
“I wasn’t the type of person who thinks ‘Wow, I am not a kid anymore, I must do this or that’, I am more enjoying what life has in store for me according to my age. I don’t want to force maturity onto myself.”
Is there any particular image you want to show to your fans?
“I am keen to show how my songs are now, with the release of this new hip hop song, hoping they would still appreciate and love my work. Since I am very Pop back then, I was hoping they would love this new genre. I would also like people to get to know about hip hop through this promo. Lucky me, my fans are very active fans. Every city has their own community, so they somehow manage to be friends with each other and do some gatherings despite their background differences. Sometimes I also like to spare some of my time while I am working in Jakarta or outside Jakarta, for around half to one hour to meet the fans. They often create their own meet and greet, so I would always try my best to spare some time for them to appreciate their support.”
Last October you just perform your 10 year concert, right?
“So stoked about it, since the preparation is only 2 weeks! The reason behind it is because this year I completely focus myself on acting (movies), turns out my fans miss me on stage, singing. Looking back, I just realized it’s been 10 years since I enter the entertainment industry, so I was thinking, why don’t we make a concert for the fans. After 2 short weeks of preparation, the concert itself turns out great and I was really relief for this past 10 years and hope for the best in the future.”
Have you had any stage fright and how do you overcome it?
“I think as a singer if you don’t feel nervous, you won’t go all out on stage. If you don’t feel your heart beating out of your chest and adrenaline rush in, you would feel awkward on stage. If you ask: ‘Are you scared?’ Well in fact, the same fright that comes inside you will give you an adrenaline rush that actually portray best on stage. Truth be told, I release a hiphop song, at first I was scared whether my fans would like it or not; the fact that it’s a full English song; would the hiphop community itself will like it –seeing as my transition was sudden. I am worried that this would take them by shock, and also for people who genuinely love hiphop, whether they accept my work or not, thankfully it was accepted.”
And that’s when Tuan Tigabelas came to the rescue. But what was it like back then beforehand?
“Yes, Tuantigabelas helped with the lyrics, we got in the studio together, me, tuantigabelas, and Bonie. They are very excited as well since they know me for quite some time. Around 1.5 year, I’ve been following Upi (Tuantigabelas) wherever he has gigs. I just wanna know how hiphop is doing in Indonesia, I follow him everywhere ‘til one time he said, ‘Man you are crazy for following my gigs this often”, he was impressed with my persistence and efforts to get into this industry. I met a bunch of people like Nayaka, Gibran and many more to show how serious I am in this industry, that’s why I am jumping straight to the field.”
Musically, we can see that you’ve grown and been doing alright so far. So, what’s next for Bastian?
“I plan to release a hiphop album. I got the best colleague, he is very welcome about the idea. He even invited me to go to the States to have the process there. But seeing all the aspects, I suggested that I would record here and he would make the finishing process of the album there. His enthusiasm is just awesome!”
Writer: Ervina Michelle LIem
Interviewer: Adhinda Latifa
Editor: Galuh Tathya
Photographer: Vicky Melly
Videographer: Rengga Aditya
Stylist: Salsabila Sari
Digital Imaging: Rendra Martin
Wardrobe: DiskoPantera Merch, available at The F Thing
Location: Swillhouse SCBD