Emma Oliver: "Doing It Herself"
Photography by: Bree Fish
Growing up hasn’t been easy for young singer, Emma Oliver. The young artist hasn’t let a tough life without a
father, and a lifelong battle with anxiety hold her down. If anything, it has fortified a resolve for an artist who embodies the “do-it-yourself” mentality of her favorite singers. While struggling living in a single-parent household in Waxahachie, she turned to YouTube as her personal music teacher. While at her desk in her room, she would shut the door and search songs by Etta James, Yebba, and Kevin Garret. Emma Oliver made YouTube the platform for her vocal lessons, while the muses she followed became her vocal coaches. Oliver found refuge from the anxieties of life by escaping to a place she could control — her voice.
“I would retreat to my room and watch several artists I look up to perform truly incredible songs, and I thought to myself, ‘Why can’t I do that?’ So, I learned to sing...to really sing my guts out.”
Video by Matt Engleking
Oliver’s vocal abilities matured with each YouTube sitting, so much so, that when the time came to release a video of her own cover renditions, the awkward small-town homegirl went viral on Twitter overnight. One of Oliver’s cover songs, “Say You Won’t Let Go”, (originally performed by James Arthur), gained one million views on Twitter and was featured on “Six Second Covers” by Twitter. Oliver, known as @itsemmaoliver by her Twitter handle, also released an Astrid cover “Think Before I Talk,” in which Astrid herself retweeted with, “WOW.”
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