We had the good fortune of connecting with Emmy Meli and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emmy, what led you to pursuing a creative path professionally?
My entire life has been a series of feeling out of place. I never felt like I truly belonged anywhere, with anyone. Most of the time, it didn’t even matter how many lovely people I was around; I constantly felt a sense of abnormality, like existing was uncomfortable and there was something extremely different about me. My childhood was not one many others could say they experienced, and it was extremely out of the box. Art was a safe space for me no matter what was going on in my external world or internal world. The feeling of being out of place in the world followed me into adulthood, and was amplified with new experiences and sadnesses. I spent a lot of time thinking my creative habits were “weird” because they were just another thing that set me apart. My art brought my feelings out of my head and into the physical world. It wasn’t until extremely recently that I realized that instead of fighting the current I was born riding-I should flow with it, swim with it, and breathe with it. Yes, I was different from everybody else; but that is not a flaw, it is the most beautiful strength. I was born to be stronger than most people I’d been surrounded by. My purpose here was indeed to NOT belong, NOT fit in, and to BE abnormal. That is what made music so incredible and sacred to me. It is the people who are born with that beautiful strength that have the courage to pursue, endure, push, and break boundaries for the things they are passionate about. To live to create beautiful things for others is only a metaphor for having a huge heart. I chose a career in the arts because it is the biggest form of love there is. It is a way people can share their “current”, if you will, with others. That is definitely different, and that is special. That is the abnormal I am, and will always want to be.
Please tell us more about your work. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
I believe what sets me apart from others is my art as a whole. My voice especially: its abilities, style, tone, texture, and inflections are unique on their own– but also my melodies, writing style/ choices. I also paint, draw, and do some graphic art. I style all my shoots and creative visions, because every body of work I create I want to be extremely special and personal. My outfits tend to be more on the out of the box, colorful, retro side, which stands out on its own. Each release is an entire art piece, and in future releases I plan to use my own personal art rather than photographs. Vocally, I’ve drawn inspiration from artists that are far from pop; such as Amy Winehouse, Duffy, Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James, and Betty Everett. My writing style has been widely influenced by artists of the 60’s such as The Supremes, The Temptations, and The Beatles. It definitely wasn’t easy getting to the point i’m at now- in fact it’s been hell sometimes and i’m not even half way there. But every time I fall I remind myself that I’ve ALWAYS gotten back up, not just in music. I remind myself that the overwhelming sense of “knowing” I will am this artist and will always be this artist keeps me going. I pick myself up because I want to help people, spread the love I have inside of me, and change the world. That is what matters most to me, not my ego issues. I want the world to know that being authentically who you are is a good thing, and I plan to reflect this in my music. The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Oh goodness, where do I even begin. I owe so many people in my life a huge thank you. It’s even deeper than thank you, to be honest. Mckenzie Whitman, Jada Young, Caroline Desmet, Clay, Kenny, Sam Hall, literally everyone in my day to day that pushes me beyond my limits, shows up for me every single important event no matter what, listens to me, reminds me that I am loved, and accepts me for who I am. Mckenzie, you know that if I could put into words how grateful I am for your light, your spirit, and your mind being in my life we’d just cry for hours and hours. Thank you for being on this journey with me, and being literally one of the most important people by my side. I owe you more than I could ever explain, you are so special. Sam, thank you for you unconditional love, your endless creativity, your genius mind, and your open arms. Thank you for showing me your heart in every way, shape, and form, and thank you for believing in me endlessly. Jada, you already know. You are my earth angel, my ride or die, and my day one. Thank you for reminding me to love, and for being such a beautiful place for me to feel safe in. It means more than. you’ll ever know. Thank you Mom, for your never ending support, love, and faith in me. Thank you Dad, for the music.
IMG CREDITS TO: MCKENZIE WHITMAN, BRANDON MINTON, CAROLINE DESMET, CLAY REYNOSO