By Elio Iannaacci
Emeli Sandé gets a little emotional when a certain British hitmaker is mentioned in conversation. “When you say, ‘Adele,’ I say, ‘Hope,’’’ the Scottish-born singer-songwriter says. “People want to hear themselves in music again. Music with all the flaws and breaks. Her honesty has taken over the world.” A fairly unknown name in Canada, Sandé (who changed her first name—Adele—to Emeli) seems to be on the same path her idol has taken. She’s already climbed the British charts with two singles off her debut disc, Our Version of Events (“Heaven” and “Next To Me”), become Simon Cowell’s current favourite crooner and won one of the most coveted Brit Awards—the Critics’ Choice trophy. Yet Sandé’s beginnings couldn’t be more different than those of most pop artists. She started getting serious about songwriting in between patient visits while in medical school. “I was working and studying in the neurological ward, and there was this lady who was a paraplegic,” she recalls. “Her son was visiting and she told me her whole tragic story and let all these emotions come out. Part of that intense connection ended up becoming the song ‘My Kind of Love.’”
Sandé is planning on performing the track while opening for Coldplay in July during the band’s tour dates in Montreal and Toronto. And she already has a few ideas fired up for new material.
“I really want to write about the speed of everything at the moment,” she says. “Everything’s changing and the way we communicate is so rapid. I just want to do my part to slow it down.”
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