Having made her debut last year with the five-track Departure EP, Emi Wes is back to build up even more momentum with her new single, “Get That”. As she explains in more detail below, she’d been working as a singer-songwriter for a few years, but never quite gelled with the right collaborator who understood who she was as an artist.
That’s all behind her now and she’s most definitely found her lane. As “Get That” shows, she’s carved out an idiosyncratic blend of smoky, jazz-tinted neo-soul that’s got just a hint of the dry sense of humour that makes her so engaging. The track itself touches on that early period in her career as she learns to realign where she is in life, drawing a parallel with the aspirational drive often found in rap to apply it to her own sound.
Speaking on “Get That”, she says: “Written as my most anti-self. Feeling that I had a hard time fitting in. Every session I had, and most of the people I met, before meeting Robin Hannibal, was older men looking at ‘Top 40’ and generic songs on Spotify, with an insane amount of plays, trying to make me match things that were already done and not me. It made me feel that what I was bringing to the table didn’t really matter. It made me angry and made me promise myself to never work with people who are blocking your initial creativity—‘there’s no way I’m gonna work for the man, and follow all of his plans’.
“Also, I wanted it to be possible for young women to be vocally direct and to dream about success, financial stability and material wishes. I grew up listening to rappers being vocal about this. Somehow it wasn’t as easy for me to be as direct and provocative on those subjects. I’m happy that there’s a shift in time, in that sense, on how women ‘should’ or ‘shouldn’t’ say or behave. It was amazingly liberating for me to list material things that I also have hopes for in the future. In that sense it’s a manifestation.”