The angelic vocals of Emma Hewitt have graced some of the most iconic trance tracks over the last few years. She has worked with the biggest names in electronic music and performed at venues around the world. Emma was nice enough to answer a few questions for us about her production process, the future of trance music and more!
What is the process for collaborating with a producer? Do you just get the track then send them vocals or do you actually get to be in the studio with them?
It depends on the individual situation. Often the producer will send me an instrumental demo idea for a track, like in the case of “Waiting” Other times my brother and I will write a song with a piano or guitar, record the vocal this way in an acoustic format and send this through to the producer. We did this with “Be Your Sound” and many other tracks. I am happy to work either way, sometimes a greaet track can inspire a lot of melodies that I wouldn’t normally write. On the other hand having the freedom to write a whole song ourselves and send through gives me creative leeway to go in any direction without getting boxed in.
How did you start doing vocals for electronic music?
I always wanted to get involved in dance music vocals, but I never really knew how to go about it. I grew up in the world of rock music in Australia, and was always surrounded by live bands and organic music, so I didn’t really know anyone in this world even though I loved the music. When I was in London working on some songwriting with my publishers of that time, BMG music. I asked them if they knew of any dance producers looking for vocalists, they introduced me to Chris Lake who was looking for someone to sing on his track “Changes.” This particular track collaboration didn’t work out, but we enjoyed working together and came up with the song “Carry Me Away.” This was my first release in dance music, after this track Cosmic Gate found me on Myspace and we wrote “Not Enough Time” together. From then on I was hooked on the EDM world and it has now become my home.
Any exciting projects you are working on at the moment?
I have just begun writing for another album, well it will probably be broken down into a couple of EPs instead of a full length album this time around, but I am looking forward to pushing myself creatively to see what we can create. I also have quite a few exciting collaborations lined up for this year – the first of which is ‘Forever Is Ours’ off the Armin ‘Intense’ album. There is plenty of touring as always, and I will be joining Armin on a number of his Armin Only shows too, which will be great fun!!
Where do you see trance going over the next few years?
I really feel trance seems to be making a comeback again. I am noticing this a lot in the clubs right now. There is really a new breed or evolution of trance coming through, it is a very exciting time in EDM now, so many genres are starting to merge together to create new styles and sounds. This is creatively giving producers and artists the freedom to explore directions they were previously unable too. Trance is seeing a lot of new producers coming through who are really pushing the genre boundaries.
Your voice has been on some of the biggest vocal trance hits over the last few years, which track was your favorite to be a part of?
It is hard to say really, all of the songs have been special to me, and I have had a lot of fun creating them and performing them live. Working with Cosmic Gate is always a blast for me as I truly love the guys as people as well as being a huge fan of their productions. It is always awesome hearing a finished track from them for the first time, they always manage to exceed any expectations I could have possibly had.
Of course “Waiting” has also been a really special track to me, as this really brought a wider audience to my voice and gave me a lot of opportunities. “Carry Me Away” was a very personal song to me lyrically, so this one means a lot, and being the first song I released in the EDM genre it really opened up a whole new world to me.
As far as the enjoyment of the actual recording process, “Waiting” was a really special moment in the studio – it was one of those nice little moments where you are recording the vocals just as the song has been written and all the elements line up in a way that makes for a special recording session. I recorded it down at a beachside studio in Australia after summer had past and I was IN that song and the memory I was writing about, so I hope that feeling came through on the record.
Who is your favorite producer right now? Is there anyone you haven’t yet worked with that you would like to?
I am a big fan of Mikkas who did an amazing remix of me track “Rewind” recently. He is doing great things and I understand he has just remixed for Armin – he is one of the new guard doing a killer job of fusing genres and is helping to evolve the sound of the current scene…to top it off he is just a genuinely great guy who deserves all the success he is achieving.
I really love sounds like The Knife Party. Porter Robinson is doing some fantastic stuff! Hardwell is obviously another favourite of mine and I would love to do something with him if the opportunity arises at some point. There are so many talented people out there. I would also love to experiment combining some heavier rock sounds with some trance beats too, perhaps create something a little more spooky.