License to Cry

Dominic Chin

“‘License To Cry’ is a collection of songs that document the early stages of self-discovery in my life, in my efforts to articulate my struggles and explore different sounds to express my reality. It was always difficult for me to verbalise my feelings growing up because I didn’t ever want to give myself away and reveal my vulnerability to others. I feared that they would judge me or find me a burden, and so this album is in a way, me talking about what I didn’t want to talk about.

It was therapeutic almost to finish up the songs with my producers, because it felt like I finally confronted some of the traumas in my life. In the process of making the songs, we always made it a point to make the song not sound too much as what it would lyrically seem to be. For example, HERE is a mid tempo and “springy” type of song, but it talks about me missing my late grandmother. SHY is a high energy EDM song, but it talks about my paranoia and insomnia.

The reason for the title is because for a long time, people have always tried to figure me out and wondered why I am the way I am. This album is the explanation that I can finally give to people - this is why I am the way I am. I have many reasons for my tears, I have many stories of my past.”

The EP’s focus track, the previously unreleased CRY, is an R&B track with a bit of a late 90’s pop vibe, saying that it’s OK to cry, even as you’re told to “man up”. It’s about being yourself and breaking free of the fear and shame from having to conform to others’ silly expectations and rules.

Dominic Chin tells us about the message behind CRY: “Growing up, I have always had poor confidence, and hated sports and the general rowdiness that boys would get up to. I would constantly be told to ‘suck it up’ and ‘don’t be a girl’. The song is about how me, being male, faces society’s demands to behave and act a certain way, but in fact every man is different. I used the term ‘cry’ as a symbol in the song to represent all the unfair expectations that others place on us. We came into this world crying and yet somehow it has become ‘feminine’ to do so.”