Emma Hamilton Interview
Emma Hamilton is one of the most exciting singer songwriters I’ve come across this year. I discovered her album La Musique and fell in love with it. Such beautifuly written jazz pop songs that are sung in French & English. She is an extremely talented artist who is going places. So read on and find out why La Musique is one of the best albums of the year so far.
1. Are you happy with the response to the album so far?
I am very happy with the response to my album so far. It’s so exciting to hear people tell me that they love my music and that they saw the CD in the store and decided to buy it. I am also thrilled about the fact that the album reached #9 on the Aria Jazz charts just 3 weeks after it’s release!!!
2. How did the recording process go for the album?
The recording of the album was one of the most intense periods of my life. My younger brother Thomas was the producer and arranger, and because between us we play a lot of the instruments ourselves, there was a huge amount of preparation involved. We were also really lucky to have our pick of some of Australia’s leading musicians contribute to the album. Everyday was like Christmas – getting to hear these incredible musicians shape our music in such a beautiful way!
3. What has been the inspiration for album?
My album "La Musique" was inspired by so many aspects of my musical life so far. I sing mainly in French (and some songs in English) because of my dual citizenship. The album in my interpretation and experience of a romanticised France. It is meant to transport you somewhere else, and it includes a wide spectrum of musical styles that all reflect my own personal tastes and influences.
4. How did ABC Jazz get involved with releasing the album?
I signed with the label ABC Jazz last year, after they spotted me performing in a jazz club in Sydney. They approached me to make an album, and "La Musique" is the result of that collaboration.
5. What inspires you when writing your songs?
I am inspired by so many styles of music : Jazz and swing, gypsy music, orchestral pop, French standards, folk music, waltzes… And I really look up to songwriters such as Paul Simon who is so diverse with his musical styles, and also has such catchy and beautiful melodies.
6. How has the French sound inspired your music?
I have always been attracted to singing in French because my family is French, and I think that I can be so much more theatrical and dramatic when I sing in French. The actual language can also allow me to me to be emotive and more playful with the actual sounds of the words.
7. How the internet & social media played a part in getting your music out there?
I am constantly so surprised about how people find me on youtube, or facebook and decide to engage with my music. I think that social networking is also a great way for people to find out more about me, and me about them. I must admit I am a complete addict!! Not only do I have an iphone, a couple of laptops and now an ipad2! I am always on social networking sites!
8. How is playing Jazz Music different to when you were playing Pop Music in a band?
In my band we used to play what we called "jazz-pop" and I guess what I do today is not that different, probably just no electric guitars! Since my band was also with my brother, the dynamic is quite similar. But the main difference to what I used to do is the instrumentation, and now we have a lot more strings on our music.
9. So are you excited about playing live in Paris?
I am soooo excited to be performing live in Paris!!! Paris is my favourite city in the world, and I would say that France is definitely my second home. It’s so cool to be going back to France this time with my album under my belt, and to be performing to a French-speaking audience!
10. Where has been your favourite place to play so far?
So far the coolest gig I did was performing at the Enmore Theatre supporting Ryan Adams! This is such an iconic venue in Sydney, and the audience was huge and it was overall such a great performance!
11. What do you do to prepare for playing a live show?
To prepare for a live show, I always think carefully about the line-up, which instruments and musicians. The setlist also requires a lot of consideration, to organise the order of the songs, to get a good balance between up-tempo songs and gentler songs. I also warm up my voice with scales, drink heaps of water and really focus on getting "into the zone".
12. Who has been your greatest help with your music so far?
My dad is really my biggest fan! He comes to all our gigs, lugs gear, films us… Ever since I was a kid he has been supporting my brother and I by taking us to recording studios and letting us play loudly in the family home growing up!
13. What is next for Emma Hamilton?
Well, I would really like to make another album , I have so many new songs that I am excited about, and I would like to be doing more concerts overseas!! I am very excited about the future!