Introducing: Emma King
Having had quite the journey over the last few years Emma King, via Nashville, has arrived. With a debut album on store shelves (virtual and real) now, we caught up with Emma to find out how she got here, where she's going next, and how she takes her coffee.
Hey Emma, can you introduce yourself to our readers?
Hi everyone! My name’s Emma King, I’m a musician and songwriter from Kingston Upon Hull. My CD collection began with Cash and Elvis, I loved their unique sound, style and cheeky rebellious nature. I’ve toured Europe and spent the last 5 years in Tennessee making music and taking inspiration from the cities!
How did things get started for you?
I really started to take writing seriously when I started college, the lovely Carleen Anderson (god-daughter of James Brown and lead singer of The Brand New Heavies) was kind enough to offer me a scholarship in Brighton. It was a great time to play, meet other musicians and write about my experiences, but from an early age I always had this yearning for Tennessee - probably due to my Elvis infatuation. After a lot of hard work and 4 return trips my band and I began a life in Tennessee.
What’s your approach to songwriting?
Writing music is always a natural process, I work much better without time limits, rules and procedures. I always try to keep it organic and every song is written in an entirely different way. Sometimes a song can come in the middle of the night or before going on stage and the subjects are always something I’ve experienced personally . Some songs we write take days to finish and others songs come instantly.
My debut album is called Emma King it’s co-written and produced with the talented Ritch Spence. We wrote half the album in Tennessee and the other half in England. The record is about my time in America, instead of taking photographs I decided to create songs to be able to re-create those memories. It began at Sun Studio in Memphis and when I moved back to England the album followed me to Abbey Road which was a symbolic end to the journey… We’re home.
I really love ‘Baby You Don’t Mean Nothing’ and ‘Over and Out’. What are your favourite tracks on the album?
Thank you so much! That’s really lovely to hear! I’m quite close to ‘Baby You Don’t Mean Nothing’ it’s one of those songs that came instantly it was a real feeling at a raw time and was written within minutes… that doesn’t happen often but when it does it’s a nice feeling - I definitely have a close connection to the song. '(Let’s Hope) Tomorrow Is A Better Day' is such a positive track which hopefully everyone will connect with. On a personal level I always feel so joyful when I’m singing it. They’re my two favourites!
Does it feel like a long journey for you, getting to the release of your debut?
Yes! It’s often the case when you really want something (an album release) it feels like forever to arrive. Now it’s here it feels pretty surreal to see my album sat there alongside Carole King!? We had such a fun time writing and creating this record and it feels odd to sit back knowing we can’t tweak or change anything because you can literally go on forever…
Touring. Everyone has to do it, right? What do you hate?
Humm the only down sides I can really think of is…. finding food that A. I can eat and B. Doesn’t cost me £10 every time I stop (Yorkshire roots surfacing) or even worse travelling home so late that there’s nothing open at all. Whhhyyyyyy!! : (
I feel most at home travelling and that freedom, creativity and inspiration each journey gives me. I really believe without seeing and gaining experience from other people and places it’s almost impossible to write anything authentic.
And following that, where’s the strangest place you’ve played live?
I think the World Chicken Festival has to be up there! It was strange in the sense that many people dressed up as bright fluffy chickens making cockerel noises, it’s home to the world largest frying pan and finally at the end of a long day and night we realised it was a dry county… say whaaaat!
Are you excited for 2016, how do you see it playing out for you?
This has already been an amazing year, the album is finally out and my new video too which is exciting! Right now I’m currently on a BBC Radio Tour across England promoting the record. It’s nice to have a little extra exposure to a wider audience this year who have been unbelievable so far. We’ve accidentally begun writing for the next album and we have more shows in the summer too!
We always like to check whether there’s a musical style you just don’t get?
Music is expression, it’s a very intimate and personal thing and as a vocalist I know this oh so well. It takes a lot of guts and confidence to be bold enough to stand out from a crowd and express yourself. I try to hear something good in everything and usually there is :0)
What’s the question we should have asked you today but haven’t?
What is the one thing you wish to be remembered for… Kindness.
Finally, how do you take your coffee? (Or alcohol?)
Can I please have a hot chocolate with my hot chocolate… I love chocolate.
Thanks so much for your time. Good luck with the album.
Thank YOU so much for taking the time to listen to the album and write these fun questions! It’s been a pleasure! :0) xox