NoSo = Abby Hwong (they/them)
Debut Album, Stay Proud Of Me, Out NOW via Partisan Records
Over 2 MILLION STREAMS for Stay Proud Of Me
Recent Dates with Lucy Dacus + Yumi Zouma + Molly Burch
NoSo ADDS from Indie 102.3, KEXP, KJAC, KSLU, KTBG, KUWR, KXCI, WBJB, WEQX, WMNF, WNXP, WUNC, WYCE, WYMS + additional airplay from CD92.9, KCMP, KCRW, KCSN, KRCL, KUTX, KXT, Sirius XMU, WBJB, WCNR, WFHB, WFMU, WFPK, WNRN, WPYA, WTTS, WXPK, WXPN and more!
LA-based, non-binary, Korean-American artist NoSo (real name: Abby Hwong, they/them) released their anticipated debut album – Stay Proud Of Me – on July 8th via Partisan Records. Album highlight, the darkly groovy “Honey Understand,” was inspired by “insanely melodramatic screenplays” they would write each night before going to bed while cooped up during quarantine.
Hwong wrote and recorded much of the record alone during quarantine in their bedroom, studying any non-guitar instruments they weren’t as proficient in along the way. The result is a deeply earnest coming-of-age story, and a nuanced introduction to NoSo’s universe. Their stage name is shorthand for North/South: a nod to their Korean heritage, and the inane origin question (“Which Korea are you from?”) that so many Korean Americans inevitably face. Throughout Stay Proud Of Me, NoSo indirectly confronts the insecurities and frustrations that can arise from the Asian-American experience, ending up feeling like a balm for the alienated.
Stay Proud Of Me grapples with the search for a sense of identity, overcoming impostor syndrome, and repressed memory – its power stemming from NoSo’s universal tenderness and a singular perspective to affect the hearts of many. The marriage of their lyrics and captivating guitar performance feels magical, as if NoSo can open up portals to fantastic new realms, guided by an emotional honesty that breaks you down in one moment and fills you with joy in the next.
NoSo graduated from USC’s music department (same program as Remi Wolf, Muna, King Princess), and in 2019 they were a Tiny Desk Contest finalist with NPR. Their single “Suburbia” was featured on NPR’s All Songs Considered last fall, and was inspired by the predominately white Chicago suburb where Abby grew up (which also happens to be the town that Mean Girls was based on).