Ten months into my New Year resolution to listen to more new and varied types of music and I have to admit that for October, I have cheated a bit – the music I’ve chosen this month is not new to me. However, she’s been out of the limelight for a while and delightfully, I discovered a new EP from her when I researched this piece.
Emilia Mitiku first came to the attention of Alfie Boe fans, myself included, when she supported Alfie on his Storyteller tour in March / April 2013. She was heavily pregnant at the time and this gave way to an unexpectedly hilarious moment when Alfie introduced her, before their duet on Dimming of the Day. Emilia also duetted with Alfie on Angel from Montgomery on that tour.
This version of Dimming of the Day is my favourite and is often chosen as one of fans’ six sensational songs. I’m still not sure how I managed to leave it out of mine!
Emilia has released several albums but the one I’m concentrating on, and is probably most familiar to Alfie fans is 2012’s I Belong To You, a collection of what Emilia calls vintage pop. A mixture of pop, overlaid with jazz and country sounds, the album showcases Emilia’s rich, velvety voice in a number of styles, all of which reflect the jazz, pop and traditional Ethiopian music she grew up with. The first song I ever heard from Emilia reminded me of Dolly Parton:
The subject matter of heartbreak and the country lilt of the music show Emilia’s mastery of styles, especially when compared to the upbeat, sparkling So Wonderful:
One song from this time that didn’t appear on I Belong To You, is Why Is He So Mean?
This was a highlight of Emilia’s live performances in 2013 and quickly became a favourite with the mostly female Alfie Boe audience, as only catchy, rhythmic songs about women surviving relationships can! It’s impossible to sit still and listen to this – before you know it you’re up and dancing, whilst also singing at the top of your voice.
As I mentioned earlier, I was overjoyed to find new music from Emilia when researching this piece. Blue, Blue, Blue, a four track EP was released in late 2017 and is pure, vintage Emilia Mitiku, stylistically similar to I Belong To You. Opening with a slow, silky cover of Rihanna’s We Found Love, the EP gets into it’s stride with the title track:
Upbeat, with a catchy hook, this is another song you’ll be quickly singing and dancing along to. “Blue, blue, blue, that’s what I learnt from you” appears to take up where I Belong To You left off and is all the more welcome for it. I would be happy if Emilia made this sort of music forever.
When Our Roads Cross and Forgetful Lover hark back to another era of music, reminiscent of Alfie’s forthcoming album, As Time Goes By – I would love to hear Alfie’s voice sing some of Emilia’s songs. This record is so smooth and silky, it was over far too quickly; I hope 2019 sees more new music from Emilia Mitiku.
Blue, Blue, Blue is available here:
I have one copy of Emilia’s album, I Belong To You, to give away, just answer this question:
Which two songs did Emilia sing with Alfie Boe on his 2013 Storyteller tour?
Competition will close at Midnight on 7 November 2018 – good luck!
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