It’s been a steady rise to fame for singer-songwriter Kina Grannis. The once YouTube star is now an acclaimed recording artist in her own right, who after touring her major label debut ‘Stairwells’, followed up with her sophomore LP ‘Elements’ in May of this year.

We asked Kina to put together our latest Spotify playlist and caught up with her to talk tours, tweets and writing retreats.

1.You’ve just toured Australia and New Zealand, how was the reaction to your new music from the fans there?

It was great! There's no better feeling than finally being able to share these new songs with my fans around the world and for their response to be so positive. I really made myself go deeper and more personal with this new album, and knowing that people are connecting to it is all I could ever hope for.

2. Tell us about the songwriting process for your last album ‘Elements’?

When I got back from the last world tour in support of my last album, I felt like I had forgotten how to just sit quietly with my guitar and let songs find me - it'd been a long time since I had the time to really create. To deal with this, I ended up going on a bunch of writing retreats - Portland, OR, Idylwild, CA, Pond Eddy, NY, San Francisco, CA - to really give myself a lot of time and space to find my creativity again. I swore off internet for most of these retreats and just spent a lot of time being in nature, reading, listening to music, and writing. It was incredibly powerful (and productive) for me.

3. Talk us through the songs on your Spotify playlist and why you chose them?

I basically have selected every version of happy song I could think of. I have nostalgic happiness, dance around by yourself happiness, summer road trip with the windows down happiness, being with the one you love happiness, the list goes on and on. It really made me realize how many versions of happy there really are.

4. We believe that happiness is better shared; please can you pick a song from your playlist and tell us who you’d like to share it with?

Not that my sisters need to be introduced to this song, because they grew up right alongside me listening to it, but I'd want to share "Carolina In My Mind" with them... again and again forever. James Taylor brings back on the best memories of childhood and my family for me, and listening to him WITH my sisters is just the best.

5. We read that you try and reply to every tweet you receive from fans... how important is it to you to communicate with them on such a direct level?

Yes, I try, though I've been dropping the ball a bit lately! It's incredibly important to me that I have a direct line of communication going on with the people around the world that support me. For one, I love connecting with strangers, learning from them and being inspired by their lives. But second, and more importantly, these are the people that have allowed me to do what I love every day, and I need them to know how much that means to me and how important they really are.

6. You’ve achieved so much over the last few years, what are your aspirations for the future?

Much of the same - keep growing as a person and an artist, keep pushing myself, creating the best music I can, sharing my music with as many people as possible, and doing whatever I can to help make the world a better place.