Entertainment » Music

Emii :: It’s Time!

by JC Alvarez
Saturday May 25, 2013

Today's pop-stars have to come fully-loaded. To succeed in this highly competitive business they have to know how to size up the competition, anticipate what their fans are after, and then work to keep them on their feet. Emii has been strategizing on her plan of attack for a better part of the new millennium, and the pop goddess with a heart for rock and roll, is deciding to set her sites on the club floor.

Porcelain smooth skinned and exotically beautiful, Emii is still glowingly an ingénue though already solidly invested in her music.

"I started with pop/dance music. I was 16." But admits that the material from that early era of her career was less than what she had hoped for, Still she was dedicated to the process. "I wrote with a lot of producers and for a time it was rock - some really heavy rock."

Her debut EP Magic produced by veteran studio producer Adrian Gurvitz revealed her darker edge and muscularity as a vocalist on love lorn tracks like the EP's title track and "Kiss It Where It Hurts". To match that album project's electric guitar grinds, her look was, appropriately, leather and lace. Her auburn hair synched with her rock credibility, though at the moment she sports platinum locks.

"Initially what happened when I was working with Adrian Gurvitz," Gurvitz is well known for the work he did on The Bodyguard Soundtrack which featured Whitney Houston. "I started having flashbacks," Emii continued, "of being this little kid and blaring that soundtrack in my grandparents' attic - he reminded me of that."

Emii would deliver a more contemporary beat-heavy jam entitled "Mr. Romeo" and featured Snoop Dogg (the newly baptized Snoop Lion). Her love of r&b and soul would some come into play. "I think it's becoming very clear to people now that I love all kinds of music."

Emii counts Whitney Houston among one of her chief influences as a vocalists. "There's also Gloria Gaynor, Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson, Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders - there were a lot of oldies growing up that I would listen to in the car." Not surprising, the artist also cites Tom Jones as one of her favorites especially his signature song "Delilah" . "That song is so dark in an ultra theatrical way! I would love to cover that - it's so sexy and evil at the same time."

Early Start

As a toddler, Emii would avail herself of any (and every) opportunity to perform. "I would run up to any random stage and perform - hand motions and all. People would wonder: why is she up there?" Now no one asks or questions now when the precocious pop-princess has an inspiration or a whim to satisfy. "I kinda just knew it from a very young age."

Emii gravitated to the theater. "Everywhere else I’m a little bit awkward - but get me on a stage...and I’m home! I started taking it serious when I was thirteen or fourteen." Emii insisted that she threw a tantrum begging her parents to allow her to be home schooled. "I wanted to have the flexibility to work with different producers, hone my craft and do musical theater." They gave in to her demands, much to her own surprise. "I must have been a huge brat," she jests, "or I really convinced them that I was serious."

Check out Emii’s music video for "Mr. Romeo" featuring Snoop Dogg here:

Video Vixen

"Magic," her first single, was released in 2010. She feels it "was the first transition song (from her earlier work) - you can hear the rock influence...it’s obvious, but you have some of those r&b fills in there and the pop/soul - it was that song that put me in the mood to do pop/dance music."

Though "Magic" was never remixed, is was followed up with the fashionable "Stilettos" which was reworked by Jason Nevins and Tony Moran, among others.

The video for the track also began to evolve Emii as an artist. "I was a theater person - it’s entertainment! I like to entertain people. I hope that some of the things that I find amusing, other people find amusing too." The consummate performer, and requited martial artist, is playfully at home in front of the camera.

With the music industry having altered its marketing dynamic in the last decade, the pop artist has had to work their ingenuity to attract audiences and capitalize on their image. For Emii the process of creating mini-movies for her tracks is among the high points of her craft. "It’s one of the attractive things about releasing the singles," she says. "Everything is so visual now. I want to do as many music videos as I can."

She’s taken herself to the other end of the universe in her "Freakier Freak" music video portraying an interstellar vixen two-stepping with an army of robots, and in an homage to Madonna’s "Die Another Day" even had to square off against herself...before meeting her handsome captors. "You don’t have to spend a million dollars on your music videos," not that she doesn’t wish that she could. "I’m not there yet. I want to give the fans as much as I can, and I think it’s exciting for people."

The "Time" Is Now...

With a collaboration with Snoop Lion and the gravitas of pulling in some of the industry’s best producers, what more could Emii want as her popularity continues to rise? "I just want to do everything...I love music and I love acting." The ambitious artist doesn’t take any moment for granted. "Everyone I’ve ever worked with, I’ve learned a great deal from. I’m incredibly grateful." Not all of her projects may have turned to gold at her Midas touch, but Emii counts even the "bad experiences" as all part of the process. "If you don’t’ let them knock you down...it makes you a lot stronger."

Her current single "Time to Move On" speaks to the rising popularly of electronica, while in the lyrics Emii is seemingly casting off some of her past, and embracing a new future.

She takes that strength with her into the studio to put the final touches on her upcoming album project. Confident in the chemistry at work in the lab. "I’ve done a lot of co-writes, but someone will bring me a song that I just know I’m the messenger of this song. I know I’m going to sing the hell out of this song." Whether it’s a great hook or melody, Emii trusts in her instincts to reveal the final product. "It all has to all be married to each other - there has to be this happy balance.

In the meantime that balance is met through her strong discipline to the martial arts, her dedication to the groove and her readiness to take on the limelight. "When I’m in the studio for a long time, I get very anxious - it could drive me a little insane. All I want to do is hit the stage." And with time on her side and the talent to match, Emii is one high-kicking combatant that the pop world should be paying very close attention to. Her stilettos are lethal!

Check out Emii’s latest music video to "Freakier Freak" here:

Native New Yorker JC Alvarez is a pop-culture enthusiast and the nightlife chronicler of the club scene and its celebrity denizens from coast-to-coast. He is the on-air host of the nationally syndicated radio show "Out Loud & Live!" and is also on the panel of the local-access talk show "Talking About".


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