We had the good fortune of connecting with Pauline Herr and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Pauline, what is the most important factor behind your success?
I get asked this quite a bit (although it’s usually worded a bit differently) and there are a few things that I’ve found to be important when you’re starting a brand or artist project. Ever since I started doing music I’ve always naturally been drawn to being supportive of other artists and giving back to my community in some way. I think doing this has really helped me grow my fan base even more and create closer bonds within my circle of artist friends. The more people that you support and lift up, the more they’ll do the same for you. That being said, do things out of the good of your heart and don’t expect someone to do the same for you every time. It’ll all come back around eventually, so just be kind and don’t look at other artists as your competitors.
The second thing that kind of goes hand in hand with this and makes this combo my key to success is simply just hard work, persistence, and goal setting. Those 3 things are a force to be reckoned with and without one or the other they’re not as powerful at bringing you to achieve your dreams. I’ve spent pretty much every day for the past 4 years constantly working on music, myself, my health, or my art. The little steps every day will one day lead you to the goals you set, so my best piece of advice to artists is to keep working hard and leading the way with kindness and everything else will follow.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve always wanted my art to be straight from the heart and 100% me (whatever that means at the time being as I’m always changing) so that’s why I learned how to produce, record, mix, and write my own stuff. For me, music is kind of like my diary, and it can be really scary to share that with the world but I’ve found comfort in the messages I receive and just the overall response because it’ shows me how alike we all are and the similar pain or joy we’ve experienced. It warms my heart when people really connect with my music and it’s really all I could ever ask for. I’ve always loved helping people (I went to school for nursing before I dropped out to pursue music) so it’s very rewarding when I’m told that a song helped someone out of a dark place or feel less alone.
It definitely wasn’t easy getting to where I’m at now. I heard “no” way more than I heard “yes” for about 4 years. I’m finally at a point where most of what I hear is “yes” and all of my dream labels are interested in my music, which almost came out of nowhere. The crazy thing about working hard, being persistent, and leading the way with kindness and love is that one day, when you least expect it, everything you’ve dreamt about will fall into place effortlessly. That’s what life feels like right now and it makes me really emotional (tearing up right now as I write this because life is just pretty crazy at the moment but in the best way). I never gave up when I heard “no” and used it as fuel to work harder. It’s a tough journey being an artist, especially when you’re just starting out, but if it’s really what you want then the best thing you can do is not give up when things get tough or you don’t feel seen. No one really saw me until pretty recently and I definitely had a few really rough moments where I was seriously ready to give up but I’m so glad I didn’t because I now have the most incredible people in my life and things I’ve dreamt about for years are unfolding in front of me. It’s all really surreal once I look back at who I was 4 years ago.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Oh man, I love this question. So I’ve actually got this really cute list I’ve made for when a very special someone in my life comes to visit so I’ll pick my favorites from that list. I’ll pretend I’m taking whoever is reading this on a 4 day adventure.
So first thing’s first, my favorite place in the world in LA is this sushi spot called Sugarfish. It’s incredible, the sushi has a buttery texture unlike anything I’ve ever tasted and their rice is to die for. I’d take you there first and maybe go for a drive on Mulholland (a famous road in LA) to look at the nice houses and views of the city. We could maybe hit an art museum this day as well (The Broad or MODS).
On the second day we’d hit the beach in Malibu and go for a hike that overlooks the ocean (Castro Crest or Solstice Canyon). Then we’d get some ramen at Tatsu and hit my favorite ice cream spot called Somi Somi.
On the third day I’d take us to this spot in DTLA called ROW. It’s a really cute little outdoor shopping and food place that has these international cuisine food trucks every Sunday (about 40 of them, it’s amazing).
Lastly, I’d take us bar hopping around West Hollywood as there are a few gems there and after a few drinks I’d take us to this cute diner right by my house called Coral Café that’s open 24/7.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d want to give a shout-out to my family at ICON Collective, which is the music production school I came out to LA for. I wouldn’t be anywhere near where I’m at now without everything I learned there and the very special people I met along the way.
I’d also like to give a shout-out to my actual family; my incredibly supportive mom, dad, and brother, who really saw my love for music and pushed me to follow my heart (my one and only tattoo says “follow your heart” in my brother’s handwriting). I seriously would’ve never made the jump to do music if I didn’t have all of them being so supportive when I brought up the idea to go to ICON.
Brandon Densley, Aanya Nigam