Sigrid Knows the Secret to a Great Pop Music Hook

Hint: It involves humming. Photography by Jens Ingvarsson Styling by Savannah White.
Reading time 2 minutes

The secret to making a good pop song isn’t really a secret as much as it is a challenge. If pop is defined by the hook—that undeniable, often fleeting moment in a song that immediately catches the ear and refuses to disengage—then the best pop music has the best hooks, which means 21-year-old Sigrid is no longer a rising artist, but a bona fide pop star.

In 2017, just a year after signing to Island Records, the Norwegian singer-songwriter emerged from her small port town of Ålesund armed with a career-launching smash: “Don’t Kill My Vibe.”



Featuring a relentlessly catchy chorus and a relatable message of self-empowerment, the sweeping electro-pop single became an instant anthem of self-worth; an epic battle cry for all who have been underestimated in life, in musical clapback form.



A string of equally infectious bangers followed the breakout track: the melodic “Plot Twist;” the pulsating, urgent “Strangers;” and the languid “Raw,” off her forthcoming EP. But just how does the Scandinavian pop star know when she’s landed on the perfect pop hook, time and time again?

“One, when [the artist and producer] give each other that ‘Yesss!’ look; two, when the song sounds as good a cappella or acoustic as with full production; and three when you start to hum the hook randomly many days after it’s been written,” Sigrid reveals.

Makeup Courtney Perkins 

Hair Taichi Studio 

Hair Assistants Toshifumi Kakiuchi and Takamasa Nakamoto

Photo Assistant Shawn Cuni

Stylist Assistant Paget Millard

Location & Equipment Pier 59 Studios

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