Interview by Visual Collaborative
October 2019 3 min read
Emotan Shine based in London UK is a singer and performance artist. Her music spans the genres of Jazz, R& B, and reggae among others, as a feature in our “Supernova” interview series, Emotan shares some insight on her Edo heritage, her music and messages of love with the world.
(VC) You hail from the Benin Kingdom which carries with it a very rich culture and history. How much of its heritage comes into your music?
(Emotan Shine) As my Chosen stage name Emotan implies, my rich Edo culture is an integral part of my being. My father Chief Sam Igbe is the Iyase Of Benin ie the Prime Minister. I was born into the whole gambit of culture and tradition which you can also find in my Edo Songs.
(VC) Your album called “Ameh” has stood the test of time, and was recently reissued. Was this always the plan when it was initially recorded or it all happened organically?
(Emotan Shine) It all happened organically it was never the plan because this album was done when I was about 16 years.
(VC) When it comes to music and its constant state of flux, do you lean more on your vocal abilities or musical instincts?
(Emotan Shine) In terms of constant free flow, I lean on the combination of both being a self-taught natural singer and relying on my natural abilities and instincts.
(VC) You split your time between Nigeria and the United Kingdom, looking at the ongoing talks of Brexit, as an artist are you more concerned or more optimistic given the trajectory of the times?
(Emotan Shine) I am very concerned. Obviously Brexit has caused a lot of uncertainty and unhappiness amongst businesses, investors, immigrants, etc. I am further concerned because of the whole disruption of the free flow movement in and out of Europe for fans and artists. I hope everything will be resolved to everybody’s satisfaction.
In my loud modes I can be very social. I am essentially the life of the party and as long as there is music I am always singing and dancing. I am a deep thinker and I have always been interested psychological
(VC) In your quiet or noisy moments, how does Emotan Shine stay inspired? What ultimately motivates you to create music you do. Are you spiritual or perhaps psychological like many artists for muses?
(Emotan Shine) I am a very reflective person. As a child, I was labeled a daydreamer. I guess I have quite an imaginative mind. I think this comes from reading fairy tales and fantasy books as a child. In my loud modes, I can be very social. I am essentially the life of the party and as long as there is music I am always singing and dancing. I am a deep thinker and I have always been interested psychological.
(VC) At this stage of your music career and accomplishments, If you could work alongside any creative, public figure or brand, who would they be and why?
(Emotan Shine) This is a difficult question to answer because they are so many great brands and musicians out there that have motivated and inspired me over the years and presently.
Photo by Emotan Shine
(VC) Is there anything else you would like to share with the Visual Collaborative global audience?
(Emotan Shine) I will like to share well wishes and positive energy to encourage all the creative people globally to make the world a better place.