The Norwegian-born, now Los Angeles-based singer, Mr. Little Jeans is in fact not a mister but techno-pop artist Monica Birkenes.
She went from quietly writing synth-pop tunes for herself to seeing her cover of Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” get millions of plays on SoundCloud and YouTube in 2011. Her 2014 critically acclaimed debut, Pocketknife, featuring tracks like “Good Mistake” and “Oh Sailor (Feat. The Silverlake Conservatory of Music Youth Chorale).” It garnered immediate buzz, and the popularity has been a lot for the introverted chanteuse to take in.
“It can be exhausting,” she says. “But I just read a book on introversion and it said you come out of your shell if it’s really something that you care about and it’s important to you. I feel like that’s the case.”
Birkenes adopted the Mr Little Jeans moniker from a character in an early Wes Anderson film. “I’d just watched Rushmore and somehow that came up, and I just decided to go with it,” she says. “I don’t think I thought about the fact that it might stick.”
Birkenes ended up working with the actor who plays Mr. Little Jeans, Kumar Pallana, and got to know him before he died in 2013 at the age of 94.
In 2014 she released her debut album “Pocketknife”. Since then Monica Birkenes, aka Mr Little Jeans, is getting used to being in the spotlight. Late last year, Nettwerk Records signed Mr Little Jeans to its growing and diverse roster.
“That’s right, Mr Little Jeans is not a dude. She’s a lady. And a very talented one!” says Perez Hilton.
“Dropping Scandinavian gems,” wrote Refinery 29
Norwegian Mr. Little Jeans, written by Tor Kjolberg