519 Indie Music Profile: Elli from Sarnia

ElliTell us about your band/career, including your history, where you are from and how you started?
I started making music in 2007 under various names. It all started in my basement with my dollar store microphone and cool edit pro. Both were cheap and/or free. My parents made Music and enjoyed it, so I guess I picked that up from them. I started with gospel music and slowly got to making hip hop, R&B and trap music. I’m from West Africa Ghana, but I was raised in Brampton and now I live in Sarnia.
How did you come up with your band name?
I’ve changed my band name several times. I went from Dzyple to E Famousz to EdotFamousz and now I’m Elli. I found people always had trouble finding me on social media and streaming sites. I was hindering my opportunities, so I had to make a change for 2020 before I dropped my most recent album. Elli is short for Elliot which is my name given at birth. Short, simple and sweet!
Do you have any recorded music available for fans?
Absolutely, I have music for my fans. I have 2 albums and a couple singles out there. My two albums are called Millennials and Illuminated. On Millennials I have 9 tracks and on Illuminated I have 5 tracks. I also have 7 singles out there. You can stream all of them on all platforms: Spotify, Apple Music, Tidal, Google Play, YouTube and more.
How would you describe your music?
I would describe my music as relatable. There’s always a message behind the music I make, because I’m always feeling something or some type of way when I write my music. Emotion is my number one go to when it comes to writing music. If I don’t feel it, I don’t write it, because I want people to feel what I feel or how I feel when I listen to music. It takes me to a different place, a place of peace in my mind.
What makes your music stand out from the others?
I’m a very unique artist. I like to think I can do any genre that I put my mind to. Instead of doing that though I mix genres. Like country and hip hop.
Take my song Tractor off my new album Illuminated, it sounds like a country song and has a country vibe, but I have added some urban rap into it. I’m not sure what category it fits in, what I do know is people think it’s different and they like it!
What do you like to do outside of music that contributes to your music?
Outside of making music, I enjoy listening to other people’s music. I’m not really an arts person when it comes to drawing and painting but I’m very musically inclined. I would listen to other people’s music and play instruments to try and match the beat or melodies I hear. I’ve taught myself how to play the keyboard, the drums and a little bass guitar.
Name your two biggest musical influences and why?
My two biggest music influences would be Drake and Michael Jackson. Drake because he’s just amazing. He went from Degrassi, a show I’ve never watched before, to this huge star that owns his own record label and signed even a friend of mine, Roy Woods. Everything Drake does is inspiring to me.
Michael Jackson on the other hand is a different type of artist. The way he expresses his emotions and feelings through his music was outstanding! Then he had amazing dance moves to top it off. I can’t even imagine the scrutiny Michael went through over the years, but overall he blessed me in many ways he has no idea. His influence is major!
Who writes your songs? What are the main themes or topics for most of your songs?
I’ve always written my own music and I plan to always write my own music. To me it just doesn’t seem right singing someone else’s song and getting credit for it. My songs range in topics and themes. It really depends on how I’m feeling while I’m writing that song. Regardless I usually write about love or perseverance. Anyone and everyone can do what they love as long as they put their minds to it.
What has been your biggest challenge as an artist? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?
My biggest challenge as an artist is getting my music to more listeners. Maybe it’s harder to do it on your own, I’m not too sure but making great music is one thing. Getting the world to hear it is another thing all together. This is a battle I’m still fighting and when the world does hear my music, my fight will be over because once they hear my music they’ll want more that I can promise!
What current projects are you working on at the moment?
For right now, I’m just focusing on promoting my new album Illuminated! Like I said before my biggest struggle is getting the world to hear my music, so I’m taking the time to push this album and get it heard everywhere if possible. Like I keep saying to everyone, there’s a song on here for everyone to enjoy. But I’m always writing music and looking for new beats and new people to work with! My door is always open. Performing is one of my greatest joys as well, I like to give my audience the best I can give. Sadly due to Covid restrictions, performing has put a damper on that. I look forward when Elli can hit the stage again and showcase my new music as well as The Elli classics.

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