With her hypnotic vocals and island instrumentals woven together in her Good Vibe Tribe EP, it is safe to say that Emily Zeck (EZ) is a musical mermaid walking among us mere mortals. The alluring ukulele paired with Emily’s mesmerizing voice on her single “Pacific Blue”, motivates you to pick up surfing and buy a one-way ticket to Kauai. The EP’s capacity to take you to destinations you’ve never discovered is a testament to Emily’s surging creativity. In order to formulate these gentle ballads, Emily attributes the therapeutic factor of songwriting and the scenic happiness she derives from the ocean for inciting her inspiration. Emily talks to Local Wolves about music breaching all other forms of communication, her trek from Florida to California, and the ocean being her escape to achieve nirvana.
The island instrumentals brought by the ukulele in “Pacific Blue” are enchanting, is the ocean a place where you find a sense of nirvana, and discover the peak of tranquility?
EZ — The ocean is my second home. At this point, I’m convinced I was supposed to be born with gills! It’s my safe place and my source of creativity. It’s taught me lessons I can apply to every situation in my life. Without it, I wouldn’t be the artist I am today.
On the topic of “Pacific Blue”, what inspired the particular folk style of the song as well as the stunning visuals in the music video?
EZ — At the time, I was head over heels for a mysterious surfer boy. If I’m going to be completely honest, the song wrote itself. The only medium between the emotion and the execution is the will to get it done.
Your first video on YouTube is a cover of John Michael Tabot’s, “Be Not Afraid”, that you dedicated to your grandpa. Even as a young girl you were able to express a raw intensity of emotion through the medium of music that some older professional singers cannot seem to grasp. Do you believe that it’s important to be an honest songwriter and intertwine your emotions and life experiences within the music you create?
EZ — Music with no soul is short-lived. Music from the heart lives on forever. Being able to express your authentic self is one of the true blessings of music. It’s an outlet to express your thoughts in ways that other forms of communication cannot.
Music has the capability to become a restorative power in one’s life, do you remember your earliest musical memory? Or the first time you fell in love with a song?
EZ — From what I remember, I’ve always been in love with music. It served so many purposes in my life. It soothed me, put me to sleep, woke me up, motivated me, made me sad or happy— it could be applied to any aspect of my life, and that’s what I loved about it.
You’re a firm believer in self-empowerment and loving yourself, yet a lot of girls often struggle with a sense of inhibition and not being content with themselves. What advice would you give to people who don’t see the light and potential they hold?
EZ — You only get to live your life once, as we know it. Spending precious days of your life wishing to be in the shoes of another is such a waste. Work towards whatever your heart desires, and in the process, respect yourself. Every step towards your goal is an incredibly vital piece to the puzzle. Without self-love and genuine gratitude, everything falls apart.
The Good Vibe Tribe EP personifies surfing on Kauai beaches and being one with Mother Nature’s beauty, how are you able to keep this instrumental/lyrical aesthetic constantly flowing throughout the whole project?
EZ — Like I said about “Pacific Blue”, some songs just write themselves! Once you get going, there’s no stopping. I live the beach lifestyle, and it shows in my music.
Writing songs often give musicians an awareness of liberation, do you find that songwriting has become a therapeutic factor in your daily life?
EZ — Songwriting is just like diary-writing. It’s just another way of communication and release. It can literally be used any way you want, and having that freedom is the beauty of music.
The EP sounds like the love child of Florence and the Machine and Jack Johnson, are there any pivotal records or artists that have influenced your eccentric sound?
EZ — I’d say you nailed it with that one! It’s hard to list them all, but anything that makes me feel like I’m home is really what influences me. By home, I mean the ocean, of course.
Is there a particular feeling you want fans to walk away with when listening to your EP?
EZ — I think I’ll leave that up to them. As long as I’m making them feel something I think I’ve done my job as an artist.
What lyrics are you most proud of writing?
EZ — “Pacific Blue” will always have a special place in my heart. I remember my heart being so warm and light throughout the whole process.
You enjoy adventuring and traveling to these wondrous spots, what’s your favorite travel destination or hidden gem?
EZ — My favorite place in the whole wide world is definitely Kauai. That place is absolutely magical. Hidden gems, though? I can’t give those away.
Recently, you made the trek to California, is California a place you always dreamed of going to spark your creativity and meet other people who bury themselves in their art?
EZ — I’ve dreamed of moving to California since early in high school when I took my first trip to the west coast. Since I began pursuing music, the dream became more tangible. Florida will always have a place in my heart, but I͛m so excited to be right in the middle of the music scene, surrounded by people who challenge me and motivate me!
Today, our world faces disastrous moments that we turn to looking at life in a pessimistic perspective, in what ways do you promote positivity in a world that is dark and at times overwhelming?
EZ — Sounds cliché, but all we really need is love. The world needs more of it, as much as we can possibly get. Love starts individually; it starts at home. If everyone practiced love with an open heart and open arms, the world would be a much kinder place. I think our world would be pleasantly surprised at how contagious love is.
In “Fire Wild”, you express the sentiment of wanting to run away, where do you escape to when life becomes a bit disheveled and cynical?
EZ — To the ocean, of course!
What is left to accomplish on your bucket list?
EZ — Oh, lots. I think my overall goal is to be able to positively influence and inspire as many people as I can while doing the thing that I love to do.