We are so proud to have Sam Rui give her side of the story on how much she has enjoyed working with his producer, GROSSE whom she calls her ‘work husband’; challenges as an R&B artist in Asia; how she found her voice through R&B; inspiration from Usher, Bon Iver, Joss Stone; finally releasing her debut album – ‘Season 2’; and plans ahead.
Her high-toned voice may not be what we would conventionally hear from R&B artists, but it has definitely worked towards her advantage and gotten her some followers on YouTube. Attagirl for being an inspiration to all young aspiring Asian artists, especially those who want to get into R&B.
Q: Congratulations on your newest and very first album! When did you start preparing for this release?
I started writing in Feb 2016 and had tracks ready by late last year that was going to be in what was initially an EP. However, when I decided that I was going to release a full-length album instead, I flew up to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in March this year to record the last track, sifted through the rest of the demos I had already done, and compiled them into an album. Long story short, it took me about a year to write and had everything polished up within 1.5 years prior to release.
Q: Crediting some of the most important people in this project, who would you name and why?
My producer, GROSSE (he makes his own music under the name FAUXE, his real name is Chris). Meeting him and asking him to produce this album was a complete game changer for me. He’s not only the album’s sole producer, he’s also one of my best friends (basically my work husband throughout the year we were making the album), mentor, musical (and often emotional and intellectual) soulmate, and on top of all that the local artist whose music and work ethics I admire the most.
“It was nothing short of an honour working with him on this record. Through working with him [GROSSE] I have learned so much about music, what it [music] can and should be, and about myself – as a person, as well as an artist. (Yo Chris if you ever read this, I love you, you already know. Can’t wait till the next).”
Q: We all love a bit of R&B especially from an Asian artist. Which artist inspired you to sing in this genre and what is your story?
I’ve always loved R&B. I just never thought I had the vocal chops to take on the genre. I grew up watching MTV and remember being in primary school and really looking up to the artists who were really blowing up at the time – Usher, Ne-yo, Jojo, Joss Stone, Alicia Keys, TLC.
However, when I started writing my very own music at 16, I was very much into indie folk. Artists like Bon Iver, Benjamin Francis Leftwich, Lucy Rose, and Daughter have been my inspiration and have influenced me when I first started writing my own music. Then, when I met Chris [GROSSE] and started writing the album, I happened to be listening to a lot of electronic R&B, and it inherently influenced my writing style.
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