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NOAHFINNCE aka Noah Adams has engineered most of his connections behind a screen. Growing up as a young teen on the internet, the influencer-turned-artist found refuge with friends online. From posting punchy 15-second covers on Instagram to full-length covers on YouTube, it wasn’t long before the rising pop-punk effort found his community. From within the walls of a naval boarding school, the promising artist began to cultivate an audience that was interested in his music. Soon enough, Adams found himself living a double life. “I started gaining an audience online as Noah but I was in school as a girl. It felt like I was living two different lives. I felt like Hannah Montana,” the 22-year-old explains over Zoom.

With his school days behind him, the alt artist is ready to move past his old image. “One of the first ones I released was called Asthma Attack and I wrote that when I was around 15 and living in an all-girls boarding school and I hadn’t come out to anybody,” he recalls. The breakout ukulele track has garnered over six million hits and remains one of Adam’s most streamed songs. Following its success, the singer found his trans experience being pinned onto his new music. “That was what I was feeling at that point. I was writing this song about being trans. Now anytime I release a song, some people will read the lyrics and question if it’s a song about being trans”.

Noah admits the “inaccurate presumptions” can grow tiresome, but he’s grateful for his audience, especially with fans that follow his music career. “I have my lyrics on Genius now and fans add what they think the song is about. It’s really fun to read,” he explains. “People who are genuinely interested in what I have to say over clicking on a five minute YouTube video of mine and then never coming back.”

Now, with a label to his name and his pop-rock anthem Worms (In My Brain) on the rise, Adams is ready to kickstart his career. GAY TIMES caught up with the bold new artist to find out more about his loyal social media following, new music and break into the industry.

Hello Noah! You’ve been an online content creator for quite some time so how did you get into music?

Everybody in my life has been interested in music. My earliest memories involve trying to get to sleep at 4am but I couldn’t because my dad was playing vinyl all night. My first obsession was Busted. I was crazy obsessed with them. Apparently, if my mom didn’t play Green Day on the way to school as a kid I would cry. I’ve been playing the drums since I was 10 and around 13 or 14 I got my first guitar and I have been teaching myself guitar ever since then. It was when I was deep in my My Chemical Romance phase and I wanted to play the guitar like Frank Iero. Then I just started writing and posting covers on YouTube and everything pointed in the direction of going towards music.

Can you name an artist or band that has been your biggest musical inspiration?

Fall Out Boy was the first band that I fell in love with. I remember listening to and just obsessively watching the music videos over. Fall Out Boy was the band that really sucked me in. It was the first time where I was googling all their lyrics trying to figure out what they mean. They were the first band where I had that type of connection.

Alongside your music career, you dedicate a lot of your social media space to talking about LGBTQ+ rights and topics. What prompted you to become more outspoken on these issues?

I originally started my YouTube channel to post covers and you could only post 15-second videos on Instagram. So if I wanted to cover an entire song I’d have to put it somewhere else. I started posting that on YouTube and people started following me there. I was so secret about the whole trans thing. I didn’t even tell people my age. I wanted them to assume I was younger because my voice hadn’t broken when I was 18. It came to the time when I was gonna start testosterone and things were gonna change very rapidly. So I decided I was going to come out and because I had already had an audience, people were asking a lot of questions and I realised that I could help people that were going through a similar thing to me. It wasn’t ever intentional when it came to speaking about LGBTQ+ stuff. The more I spoke about it and the more people asked me questions, the more I felt like this was something that people are missing.

What has been the biggest lesson you’ve learned from growing up online?

I had the majority of my good childhood experiences through the internet and meeting people through the internet because I went to a boarding school. I’ve just been more exposed to different types of people compared to what I would in real life. I learned that there’s value in different voices. When I was 15, if someone experienced being trans different to me it wouldn’t make sense, whereas now I find that super interesting. The internet has taught me that there is no right way to exist and there’s nothing wrong with somebody having a different experience to you.

How did you navigate your own identity while living in an all-girls boarding school?

It was weird. I went to that boarding school from the age of 13 and I started posting on social media shortly after. Originally, I was a fan account for like My Chemical Romance and Fall Out Boy, and then I started posting stuff about myself as I do now. A naval boarding school was a very difficult place to explore because of the strict rules. It’s was not a great environment for somebody who’s questioning themselves. It kind of just made me angry being in that space which made me question why I was feeling this way.

You’ve previously rejected the notion of being seen as a “trans man” or a “trans YouTuber”. Do you think there’s an issue with framing artists as LGBTQ+ artists?

It depends entirely on the motivation behind the labels because my record label will post a video of me and there will always be a few comments saying you’re only signing him because he’s gay or trans. A lot of people aren’t educated on this kind of space. For me, my transition and sexuality have no real impact on the kind of music that I make. It did for Asthma Attack as that was what the entire song was about. If I’m doing an interview with GAY TIMES, I am entirely happy to talk about identity. But if I want to just talk about my music or am expected to just talk about trans topics then that bothers me.

When I’m labelled as a trans YouTuber that also bothers me. I’m still quite young but I started taking testosterone when I was like, 18 so it’s kind of old for me. I understand there are a lot of people that will come into it and see the testosterone updates and be really curious. I’m trans, I’ve had surgery and been on testosterone and my name has been changed forever. It’s so boring and not important to me in terms of the music. It kind of gets a bit old, when that’s like the only question I get asked. It feels like I’m the token trans which makes it feel like I don’t deserve to be where I am.

You’ve been releasing a lot of new music lately. Do you have a favourite track so far?

Every time I finish a song I feel like that’s my best song. I’m still really happy with Worms In My Brain. My favourite song right now is one that I’ve just finished called Tell Me That You’re Okay. And The lyrics are great and it sounds a bit different to the stuff we’ve been putting out. It’s funny and quirky, but probably the most emo of the songs that I’ve written.

Congratulations on signing to Hopeless Records! Can you tell us how that happened?

It was weird because it all happened during the lockdown. One week my manager asked if I wanted a call with Hopeless Records and thought it would be stupid not to agree to this. Everyone on their roster is fucking crazy. It was kind of overwhelming in the most anticlimactic way because it was during the lockdown. They said if it wasn’t happening during lockdown, we would fly you over to LA. But, instead, I was sat in my room with my boyfriend next to me and 20 people on Zoom. Signing with Hopeless was kind of just one of those things I wanted to do with my life. I was just lucky that they were interested in me.

What’s next for NOAHFINNCE?

The next thing is more music. I’ve been writing a lot. I’ve got a lot of ideas! Maybe an EP, I’m working on more and hopefully touring in America when that can happen.