It has been quite a ride for Norwegian duo Nico & Vinz since they first released their single “Am I Wrong?” In just over a year — they dropped the track in April 2013 — the track has become the most Shazaamed song ever, and is a radio mainstay.
Both Nico Sereba and Vincent Dery grew up in Norway, but are of African decent, giving their music a unique energy and sound. They’ve been making music together since they met on the Ivory Coast in 2009, where they hit it off immediately based on what they describe as a shared vision: to be themselves.
“We are from a very small country; Norway is only 5 million people. But we’ve always had huge dreams and we’ve always wanted to be global artists,” Nico told MTV News. “When you are from such a small country, people will tell you or society will tell you that it’s not realistic.”
This attitude is exactly what led the duo to create what would become their globally recognized hit, with lyrics like “So am I wrong for thinking that we could be something for real?/ Now am I wrong for trying to reach the things that I can’t see?”
“We sat down in the studio and we said we don’t care what people say, we are gonna follow our gut feeling, we’re gonna do what we want to do and believe in ourselves,” Nico explained of the song’s message. “So, we sat there and asked ourselves the questions, am I wrong? For thinking we can become this for real? Am I trippin’ for having this vision? I’m gonna be on top of the world.”
Now, Nico & Vinz are Stateside touring with Bruno Mars and working on their album Blackstar Elephant, a name that pays homage to their respective African backgrounds. While they are fans of many American artists such as Kanye West, Ed Sheeran and Sam Smith, Nico & Vinz won’t work with just anyone. “They have to be someone who contributes to our project and adds something of value to it, it doesn’t have to be a star” Vinz explained.
Blackstar Elephant will be released this fall.