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British music artist HRVY meets Long Island kids

Singer and actor talks about his favorite musicians and why he’s tired of filming videos on beaches.

British music artist HRVY with Kidsday reporters Zachary

British music artist HRVY with Kidsday reporters Zachary Kasyjanski, left, Giovanni DiDia, Kaylee Craft-Almendares and Natalie Lajara at U Music offices in Manhattan. Photo Credit: Newsday / Pat Mullooly

We met British music artist HRVY (Harvey Cantwell) at U Music offices in Manhattan recently. We really like his single “Personal.”

Did something happen that made you want to start your career as a singer?

I remember seeing a YouTube video of a guy singing and I knew that I wanted to be a singer. It was YouTube!

Did you have fun working with Loren Gray on your song “Personal”?

I did. She is really, really cool. It was fun making a video with her as well.

Why did you decide to go with the name HRVY?

It wasn’t actually my idea. Well, it kind of was. They decided they wanted to take out my vowels because my name is spelled Harvey. They took out the vowels because it looks cooler.

Do you prefer performing in England or traveling around the world?

That is a hard question. I love London, I love where I am from, but I love traveling the world and seeing other people.

Of all your songs that you have written, which one is your favorite?

“Personal.”

On your song “Talk to Me,” what beach did you film the video on, and was it fun to make that video?

It was really fun. We filmed that on Malibu beach. I have done a lot of videos on a beach. We have had a lot videos on beaches that I am kind of tired of beaches right now. It was very windy, I got sand everywhere. I got sand in my shoes. I like the look of beaches, but I am not a fan of beaches.

If you had one day to do whatever you wanted to do, what would it be?

I always wanted to go to the North Pole. Actually, there are two things I wanted: to go to the North Pole and I wanted to go see the Northern Lights, and that would have me going to Iceland. I think that is a once-in-a-lifetime thing.

What steps did you have to take to pursue your career in singing?

I had to do a lot of YouTube and a lot of stuff online. I had to do a lot of Snapchatting and Instagram pictures. It is fun but kind of annoying as well because if you don’t look very good, it is a little hard.

How long did it take you to become a famous singer and was there one event that made you famous?

I don’t know. I don’t really think I am famous yet — maybe one day, but not right now. The event that kind of made me popular, it was a video I did when I was 12. I did a video cover of a song called “Titanium.” That went viral on Facebook, and that is how it started.

Was it fun being on the show “Chicken Girls”?

I love being on that show. All the people on the set are really nice and the stars are really cool. I actually filmed all of it in three days because I only had a limited time.

Do you write your own songs?

Justin Timberlake and Chris Brown inspired me. I do write my own songs, but I write them for other people. When I am in the studio, I have friends and I have writers who help me make the song better.

When you go on tour, does your family go with you, or are you by yourself?

When I was about 15, and that was when I first went on tour, I went with my mom. After a while, I got a bit annoying — I love my mom, but you know how it is — when I got to age 16 or 17 my mom let me go on my own with my team. I kind of miss them now because I don’t see them as much. I wish my mom was here.

In the future, who would you want to make a duet with?

I like so many people. I would like to make one with Ed Sheeran because he is brilliant.

Where is your favorite place to be?

Here. Doing what I am doing right now. I like meeting you guys and doing all this fun stuff.

Do you have any hobbies? What do you like to do when you are not working?

I love video games. I love my Xbox. I love playing all types of games. I like cars.

You did a video with Brenna D’Amico [she played Jane]. Do you think you will work together on a show since you are now both actors?

Maybe one day. I have only done a little bit of acting, so I don’t know how good I am yet. She is really, really cool. She is on Disney’s “Descendants.” She is really good. So when we did the music video, we had to do a scene where we were angry at each other and I can’t be angry, because I am a happy person. She was too good at being angry.

When you were a kid, who was your favorite singer?

I loved Justin Timberlake. He sings, he dances and he acts.

What is your next project, and when are you releasing a new album?

Right now I am in the studio all the time. When I am in New York I am in the studio. When I am in LA I am in the studio. I am hoping to eventually release an album.

Are you and Loren Gray friends? Did she have to try out to be in your video?

Loren and I are really good friends. I have known her for about a year and half. I wanted her to be in the video and I invited her to be in it. It worked out.

What is your No. 1 goal you hope to accomplish?

I would love to sell out Madison Square Garden. Once I have done that, I am done! It is my No. 1 goal in life.

Dyanne Case, Melissa Dinkelacker and Janet Nizinski’s fifth-grade class, Northside School, Levittown

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