Photo by Tobias Rose


In Scene Report, musicians from all over the globe fill us in on what’s going on sonically in their hometowns. This week Nicolay of the Foreign Exchange gives the scoop on North Carolina.


When I first started working with Phonte (my partner in the Foreign Exchange who is from North Carolina), I was still living across the pond in the Netherlands. We used file sharing through the internet to collaborate on tracks and completed our entire first album before ever meeting each other or even speaking to each other on the phone. I would sometimes wonder about what living in North Carolina would be like, and it is still a bit surreal to me that these days, almost 10 years since our humble beginnings, I call it my home.


It is not that big cities like New York or Los Angeles don’t appeal to me, but there’s something about living in North Carolina that just works. It’s affordable. It’s Southern, but it’s relatively liberal. And coming from Europe, the warm NC climate doesn’t hurt. There is a very diverse music scene. Over here, you are a world away from Hollywood, so people are only focused on the music, not on the hype. In the five years that I have lived here, I have been fortunate enough to meet and get to know some extraordinary and talented people who inspire me and help me improve my craft. What more could you wish for?


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