Meet The Composer; Emmanuel Speaks. A spoken word artist from East London.
This is a title that has been given with reason. Defined simply as a person who creates music, Emmanuel embodies the complete attitude of a composer and is bent on providing a whole experience based on this concept. So how did this all start? “From a young age, I have been very creative and expressive. Even before I started having an aptitude for writing poems and developing my artistry.” He tells me one evening. A journey that started in primary school, where his leisure time was split between playing football and writing lyrics. As time went on, it became clear that football wasn’t for him, so his focus on writing grew and a love for poetry was formed.
“I first started releasing pieces on Audioboo (an audio hosting platform), and surprisingly people gravitated to it. I was encouraged by my friends and other males around me, which was incredibly encouraging. So I just started writing more.” The positive reaction he received helped build up confidence and a desire to improve as a poet. And with such a proactive work ethic, this led to a flood o opportunities that came his way. He was commissioned to write pieces for reputable platforms such as Channel 4 and NewLook. Which provided such a solid foundation for all the hustle that came next.
In University, Emmanuel Speaks took it upon himself to go on a tour. “I wanted to take control over my gift and take it seriously. I was passionate about what I was doing and the words that I was saying, so I decided that it needed to be heard.” This manifested well and Emmanuel was received warmly. So this further praise fuelled him on to fully established himself as a spoken word artist. One of his aims was to make poetry more accessible. Almost to bring it down to a relatable level, so that any misconceptions about poetry could be explained. So that poetry could be showcased and felt in a different way, all of which he felt he had a role in playing. During this time, his main focus was on being an impactful lyricist and on developing a unique brand that encompasses all that he is. Which is how we come back to the title The Composer.
“Even though I can own being a spoken word artist as a title, I still see myself as a multi-dimensional artist. One that can use whatever means necessary to convey what I am putting across.” For Emmanuel, he doesn’t ever place himself in a box. Which is demonstrated mainly through the content that he puts out. From hosting his own show #SpeakAboutIt on Mixtape Madness’ YouTube, dropping his debut LP ‘The Composer’ in November and winning Best Poet at the 2018 UK Entertainment Awards. It’s obvious that this man’s talent should never be underestimated.
We speak more about the journey to creating ‘The Composer’ LP and how much he wanted to prove by putting it in. “From the outset, I knew what I wanted this to be. I knew what I wanted it to sound like, what images and vibes I wanted it to provide for others. So I had to have total creative control.” Not unusual to hear that an artist wants total control of their art. But for Emmanuel it’s because he wanted his debut project to tell a story of perseverance, of his real experiences and of true passion. “I have been really hands on with this project because I need people to know that it has been created with intent.”
An intention that has been set before the idea to create a project even came to mind. Because Emmanuel wants to show others that barriers can be broken down. Stereotypes can be erased and life can be a lot more interesting and fulfilling than you think! Take a listen to his new project and soak in all the insightful and woke lyrics from Emmanuel Speaks.