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An Interview with Emilie Leslie

I have been joined by Emilie Leslie who has answered some questions about her musical journey so you can find out a bit more about her!

Welcome to Totally Music would you like to introduce yourself?

I’m Emilie Leslie and I’m a singer songwriter originally from just outside of Glasgow in a little town called East Kilbride. In 2020 I moved to Liverpool to start a music course at LMA and 3 years later I’m graduating and fully submerged in both the Liverpool & Glasgow music scenes.

What got you into music?

I would say I’ve always been musical. My mum said even as a baby the only way she could get me to sleep was by putting music on and dancing with me.

In primary school I joined the school choir and would perform in the old folks homes and shopping centres and I always went up for the school talent shows. I would climb on the car garages or stand on the walls and sing for passers by pretending I was on BGT or The XFactor.

I think I was around 8 when I started taking interest in songwriting and by the time I was 10 I had written the primary school leavers song. I would put my interest in music down to all the influences from when I was a kid so my mum playing music for me, shows like Hannah Montana BGT and Xfactor being played in the house hold and my primary school encouraging me to do music from a young age.

When I went into secondary school I became quite anxious around performing and tried gigging but stuck to singing in my room (which my mum would try videoing without me knowing). I continued writing about what I was going through the good, the bad and the great and used songwriting as a therapeutic tool almost. I never stopped after that. Even if it was only within the 4 walls of my room back home.

How would you describe your song writing process?

I think it changes every time I write. I’m an observer so I soak in everything around me. Sometimes I’ll be sitting in town and see something that will spark a lyric idea like seeing people buy flowers for people or I’ll be in a conversation and someone will say something and it gives me an idea. It can take me around 15 minutes to write a song sometimes or other times it can be over a few months from when I first get an idea to completing a song.

What inspires you to create the music you create?

Life experiences. Ever song I write is written about something I have experienced or seen happening around me. Medicine was written about my health, dangerous game was a more upbeat song about the concept of being on a night out and after a couple of drinks being more confident to tell someone you like them and two worlds my newest release is written about moving to Liverpool and loving it here but missing home or the people back at home. I have over 300 songs now written about different times in my life that have impacted me in some way personally or through observations.

For anyone who hasn’t heard your music before what can they expect from it?

A story! I love to tell a story. I love the idea of giving people a little insight into different parts of my life. Some of my songs will be more serious and impactful like the ballads I write and some will be fun and Pop(y) about the good things happening around me.

What is your favourite song you have written and why?

Oh this is a difficult one. I love medicine because it was my first release but there are so many songs that I have written that I’ve fallen in love with. I’d say the ones that are written about my own personal experiences and what I’m going through are my favourites as they’re the ones that help me and will be able to help a few other people too.

You’ve recently just released your new song ‘Two Worlds’ would you like to tell us about it?

So two worlds came about one day when my sister had FaceTimed me upset over something. We call each other everyday some times multiple times a day for a few hours at a time. On this particular day I just really wanted to be there for her. It made me feel helpless in a way and wish I was back home but I know I could probably never move back fully as I love where I am just now and all the opportunities I’ve been given since moving here. So I wrote about my perspective of loving the place where I am and progressing in my career but how it can be difficult when I am missing home and wishing I could have both.

‘Two Words’ was recently played on BBC introducing what was that experience like?

I am quite fortunate that since my first release a few radio stations have picked up on my songs and played them. BBC Merseyside being one of them and one of the first. Every song I have released Dave Monks has played and I’m very grateful for that! I’ve never met him but he’s definitely helped push my music out there with every release and that goes for every station that I’m lucky enough to have had air time on. I’m continuously grateful.

Since starting your career as a musician what has been your favourite memory?

I have so many! My first release week, creating the music video for medicine, my first radio interview, supporting people at gigs and then headlining my first gig here in Liverpool. But now with my HMV tour planned im really looking forward to that because it’s a massive deal for an unsigned artist like me. Im an independent artist so being able to take initiative and plan a tour im so proud of myself and it’s going to be so special!

What’s next for you?

This year I am touring the UK on an HMV tour. I have a few releases planned and I’m very hopeful that my career will start to take off a little more. Hopefully I’ll play king tuts and one day be touring in arenas! That would be unreal!!

If you would like to check out Emilie's music you can find her here:

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