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Emma River: "It was even more meaningful to unite with music in the middle of the pandemic"

What year did you participate in the initiative? What’s your song title?

2020, “Se Meg”.

What motivated you to compose the song about world peace and participate in the initiative?

What motivated me was that I knew what this organization had already been doing at Berklee College of Music and beyond that. I was a part of some of the performances for Songs for World Peace (Skybridge), and I thought their work was so good and important. When I got asked to participate in SWP 2020 and contribute a song I was eager to participate because of the importance of the project, and the great effect music and people coming together can have on the world.

"It was also in the middle of the pandemic, so I felt it was even more meaningful to unite with music."

What does your song tell the world? Share with us the background and what brought you to write the song.

“Se Meg” is about immigrants arriving in a new country as refugees. In Norway, we have immigrants with different backgrounds, religions, and stories.

"I was thinking about how it must be very hard to leave your country and have to learn a whole new culture and language. Maybe you even left some family behind in your country. Specifically, if they left because of war it must be hard to accept you might not be able to go back, and that you are not seen as an individual but forced out because of the war. 'Se meg' means 'See me'. "

How did your song or your participation in the initiative positively impact you?

It impacted me in the way that I was a part of something bigger than myself, and that so many countries could come together to think about what peace means for them and what the situations and challenges can be in their lives or their countries. It was also nice to reconnect with college friends and meet new ones! I connected virtually with one of the participants and we did a fun IG collab together.

How did your song or your participation in the initiative positively impact your friends and family members?

It positively affected my friends and family in the way that they became aware of the project! Not all of them knew what work and initiative you guys are doing, and it was good to be able to share that with them.

How did your song or your participation in the initiative positively impact your community?

(Not sure I should do this question. I didn't share the song with my local newspaper or anything, so I don't feel it applies to me or that I know what to answer).

If relevant, what are the challenges for you to be involved in social change as an artist and how could Song for World Peace help you?

The challenges for me as an artist with social change can be that I don’t always know what challenges that I as an artist can help ease or highlight with my music. That is also my responsibility to do more research and see what I can contribute to as an artist, but therefore I am extra glad to be a part of the SWP so that we can collectively do something and make a change. Something I could do more is to collaborate with other artists from different parts of the world- and by living in Los Angeles that is absolutely possible.

What would be a potential impact that you and your music could make, to the world?

A potential impact with me and my music can be that my lyrics bring up topics around peace, and with a bigger following I can reach out to many people and it can create a ripple effect. I hope to be an artist that can continue to connect with people through lyrics and my musicality and that it makes people think and gives them a sense of peace.

What’s your goal as an Artist?

My goals are a little bit from the question above, but also I want to spread joy and musical curiosity. I search for beautiful melodies and lyrics when I write, and I want people to be filled with happiness and peace and sometimes maybe feel something spiritual. I tend to write lyrics that can be analyzed as both love from humans and love from God. Other goals I have as an artist are that I would love to tour more with my music, either as a solo artist or as a part of a bigger tour with several artists.

Anything you would like to promote? - Upcoming releases, events, etc.

I have a single coming out this summer! I’m also glad to announce that my very first EP will also come out this fall. That is something I have been wanting to do for a while now, so it is very encouraging knowing that it will happen this year.

Listen to Emma River's song, "Se Meg"!

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