SWISS REVIEW - January 2022

Edinburgh / Zug: Nat Cartier, when music is deeply rooted in Swiss and British Culture

Nathaniel Cartier, who is only 21, is an unstoppable and talented musician. He has been raised in a multi-cultural British family and in 2011 he moved from France, where he was born (Paris) to Zug. Nathaniel’s energy and positivity can be fully listened in his songs and in his new album Zuger Träumer, which has been released in July 2021. He moved to Edinburgh to study Acoustics and Music Technology (BSc) 3 years ago where he immediately caught up with the local Swiss Community. ‘I did my whole High school in Switzerland and fully integrated as a Swiss citizen, learning Swiss German and being heavily invested into the local music scene as the President of Zug’s Youth Orchestra & Big Band for several years’ he explains to the Swiss Review. ‘I am in my third year out of four and am now heavily invested in Edinburgh’s music scene – having co-founded the city’s open network for Creatives – The Edinburgh Collective’. He has also been having great success with his music: his most recent song was played on ‘BBC Introducing Scotland’, he played at a ‘COP26’ culture conference in front of Scotland’s Minister for Culture, he played at the big Scottish Music conference ‘Resonate Scotland’, and went live on BBC Radio Scotland at the end of November ’21.

SR: How do you compose your music, what inspires you and why?

NC: Abroad I always introduce myself as the Swiss multi-Instrumentalist: playing saxophone, piano, guitar & bass, as well as singing – all to a high standard. I love writing music with other people and incorporate their influences into my music. By doing this, every song has its own story and feel. What inspires me is creating positive emotional moments for other people through my music. I always tell people that I live and breathe music, and that my heart beats for music. I also love playing with other people and this is what I have been doing after COVID – getting musician friends to play live concerts with me - this is much more special than playing on your own.

SR: Last year you released your new album. What is it about?

NC: The Zuger Träumer journey started with me writing a couple of the songs in summer 2020. I finished composing all of them in June / July 2021 before the release on the 31st of July. There was a big story around the album of me returning to Switzerland for the summer, and that this Album represents my love for Switzerland and is dedicated to my hometown of Zug and the time I spent growing up there.

SR: Have you involved other artists in your album projects?

NC: My Album Zuger Träumer represents the Canton of Zug’s young / new emerging music scene. It is an album that reinforces community and brings people together. As I was saying before, I love writing with other people and Zuger Träumer is a great example of that. Involving ten other artists, to create a fabulous album full of diverse music. The cover (last one in this page) is a drawing of the view onto Zug from my balcony (which was also co-designed by a Zuger artist) and it progresses from Spring to Winter. So do the songs on the album – they all flow from Spring to Winter, and they bring the spirit and different genres of the other artists along with them.

SR: What did happen when you released ‘Zuger Träumer’?

NC: The whole album was entirely organised, managed, recorded, produced, mixed, advertised and completed by myself with little to no external support. I organised two successful concerts in Zug and was interviewed for SRF 3 representing Zug, and they played a couple of Zuger Träumer’s songs. The Canton of Zug and the City of Zug supported the project, making it a part of Zug’s history. I was also nominated to be SRF3’s best talent in September, but was not selected in the end. A Zug radio also interviewed me and hosted one of my concerts. After a super successful summer my Zuger Träumer was kind of cut short as I am back in Scotland for uni. Despite that I am making big achievements with my music here, so that is also super good – potentially even better! No matter what, I am always representing Switzerland abroad (I am now part of the Swiss Club Edinburgh Committee!). I have had so much support and great feedback on the whole album and my music from everyone in Zug and Edinburgh it has actually been really nice – I still love listening to Zuger Träumer myself!


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