Emmy the Great – Listen to Our Interview in the New Episode of the Under the Radar Podcast | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
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Emmy the Great – Listen to Our Interview in the New Episode of the Under the Radar Podcast

The New Episode of Season 2 of Under the Radar with Celine Teo-Blockey Is Out Now on Major Podcasting Platforms

May 13, 2021
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British singer/songwriter Emmy the Great is our second guest on Season 2 of the Under the Radar Podcast. Born in Hong Kong to a Chinese mother and English father, Emmy the Great is the moniker of Emma-Lee Moss, who is also a writer, journalist, and sound designer for film, television, and podcasts. In this episode Moss discusses her childhood in Hong Kong, moving back to England, and her search for belonging—at the intersection of East and West—through her music.

With April, her most recent album, she attempts to tackle this penultimate question of identity and belonging with songs in English and Cantonese. While her first two albums, First Love (2009) and Virtue (2011), were taken with very English concepts such as Albion and the poetry of William Blake, here, her themes are Eastern preoccupations—with health and their connection to our internal organs in “Your Hallucinations.” To the moon goddess in “Chang E”—who in Chinese folklore was banished there with her rabbit companion. Buzz Aldrin had famously remarked, “Ok we’ll look out for the Bunny girl” during the historic 1969 moon landings. You also hear instruments such as the gamelan (traditional, Indonesian percussions) and the bamboo organ (a giant, church organ that has it’s own annual festival in the Philippines).

April was written four years ago in New York, after a British Council residency to China and a trip back to Hong Kong. Having felt that she had transcended her life in the small, former British colony, Moss was surprised that after her trip she felt the pull to return there. As soon as the album was recorded, Moss moved to Hong Kong. She made a life there with her partner and then became a mother. In 2019, after pro-democracy protests broke out, followed by the Chinese government crackdown, they made the difficult decision to leave.

The songs and sounds in this episode are from a time before. It transports us to postcard-perfect destinations that aren’t as easy to access as a result of political upheavals and/or the pandemic. And while questions of Asian identity are particularly pertinent during AAPI Heritage month, the notions of belonging explored are pretty universal. To celebrate AAPI, we will also drop a bonus episode later this month featuring Thao Nguyen of Thao & the Get Down Stay Down.

A new Under the Radar episode is released on the second Thursday of every month. And two weeks later a shorter 10-15min episode will act as a companion piece and discuss the making of the earlier episode. Listeners will get a chance to listen to tape that might not have made the earlier cut and other behind-the-scenes morsels. There will be opportunities in future episodes to invite fans on the mini episodes. You can also write in to the show at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) to share your thoughts. And we might read them out.

Follow us on Apple Podcasts and rate the show. You can also listen to us on Spotify and podcast apps such as Podchaser.

Each monthly episode of Under the Radar features an interview with a different musician conducted by host and producer Celine Teo-Blockey. Upcoming guests this season will include Julien Baker, Adrian Younge, James Yorkston, Sleaford Mods, London Grammar, and more.

Also check our season 2, episode 1, which is our interview with The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne (plus listen to our bonus mini behind-the-scenes episode on The Flaming Lips).

On top of being available on all podcasting platforms the podcast also airs on WLUR, an NPR affiliate based in Lexington, VA (the city where Under the Radar is currently based).

Support Under the Radar on Patreon.



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