Cover Suran tells Tatler about releasing her first album under her own label (Photo: S-tasy)

The singer-songwriter, who has just released a new album under her own label, tells Tatler about finding courage and freedom in her creativity

South Korean singer-songwriter Suran returns with a new album titled Flyin’ (Part 1). Released on March 23, the new album celebrates the freedom that comes with being a solo artist—it is the first to be launched under Suran’s own independent record label S-tasy, which she established last year.

Flyin’ is the third in an album trilogy, following 2017’s Walkin’ and 2019’s Jumpin’. Its lead single, Diamonds, is a R&B track featuring Taeyong of K-pop boy band NCT—both had also participated in its writing and composing.

Suran, whose real name is Shin Su-ran, is also known by other stage names Elena and Baily Shoo. She debuted in 2014 as part of the K-pop duo Lodia.

In 2017, she released the single Wine, a collaboration with Suga of BTS, producer Slow Rabbit and rapper Changmo. It peaked at number two on the Gaon Digital Chart in South Korea and sold over 500,000 digital downloads, cementing her status as a K-pop star to watch.

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How would you describe Flyin’ (Part 1)?

This is Suran's new fantasy world. I took a “spiritual” approach to paint my own dream world. It is a reignition of my passion and dreams. 

It follows Walkin’ and Jumpin’—and you can take the literal definition of each album to understand them. They follow the rhythm of my life. Flyin’ is the last part of the series and it also means a fresh new start.

What’s the story behind your collaboration with Taeyong? 

Zayson, a producer for Flyin’ (Part 1), is a mutual friend of ours, so we all got together for a recording session. We started talking about working on Diamonds quite naturally.  I didn’t really expect to complete a song with a video, and then include it in an album—but I’m very satisfied with the final music and video, because they really complete my vision of “fantasy” in the song. 

I’m very thankful to Taeyong for working with me. He has a great, powerful energy that brings out the most of everything. I really enjoyed working with his amazing passion and positive attitude.

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What kind of Suran can we expect to see in Flyin’ (Part 1)?

I talk about discovering identity and maturity, and finally being courageous enough to go “flying” in this album. My new visuals and music are expressed very well in this classic yet futuristic album. I want to continue making music that can be listened to through generations, so I hope you have fresh views on this album and forward.

What’s it like to work under your own independent label? 

I enjoy making music with unlimited possibilities in my head and without any other pressure. 

It actually helps me to go very wild with my imagination. Sometimes there are pressures, and responsibilities I have to take care of on my own, but it is the perfect set up [for me] to try new things in music. Since I hadn’t released an album for a while, I gave it my maximum focus and effort.

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Where do you find inspiration?

I’m a daydreamer—this brings me a lot of inspiration every day. I also get inspired by my close friends. They open up their unusual points of view or feelings to me very unexpectedly. And sometimes great works or movies inspire me.

What’s something you’ve learned about yourself since your debut? 

I want to bring sincerity into my music. I don’t feel good if I’m not honest or sincere in my own music.

When will Part 2 of Flyin’ come out?

I’m currently working on it. I can’t say when it’ll be ready—but you can definitely expect it.

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