Emeli Sande Admits She Learns a Thing or Two From Rappers, Talks New Album
There's something about Emeli Sande's voice that touches the soul. Her songs serve as both a confessional and as a bonding agent -- they'll help heal and bring people together all at once. Before seeing success with 'My Kind of Love' and 'Next to Me' in the U.K. and U.S., the Scottish-born songstress flexed her vocal chops alongside many Brit rappers. They brought her to school, teaching her to be fearless within her own songwriting.
Professor Green's 'Read All About It,' Tinie Tempah's 'Let Go' and Chipmunk's 'Diamond Rings' are just a few of the hip-hop tracks she's appeared on. Sande, who's noted for her poignant storytelling on her debut album, 'Our Version of Events,' says studio time with the aforementioned lyricists offered her insight into penning lyrics differently.
"It was a test for me [working with Professor Green, Tinie Tempah and Chipmunk]," she reveals during an intimate conversation with ArjanWrites.com for HP and Windows ARTIST#TALK live interview series Wednesday night (Jan. 30) in New York City. "I love rap. You have to be efficient with your words. I learned a lot from them."
With a set of pipes more gentle than crude, the 25-year-old's delivery isn't as hard-hitting as her rap peers. "Sometimes you can hide behind melodies and songs but it was inspiring to see them say, 'This is me,' and connect with their audience," admits Sande, who plays the piano, cello and clarinet.
Since her album was released early last year, the singer has gone on to sell more than 1 million copies of the effort. "That means that many people have bought it and connected; that really blows me away," the former medical student shares.
Currently, Sande is navigating her way across the U.S., performing at local hotspots like the Crocodile Cafe in Seattle Feb. 1 and big venues including House of Blues in San Diego Feb. 7. Come spring, when her performance trek ends, she plans to begin crafting her sophomore opus. "I'm storing everything in a book," she continues, "and I'm hoping come April when the tour ends I can work on the next project."
Watch Emeli Sande Perform 'Breaking the Law'