Artist of the Month: Amy Jiang
Junior Amy Jiang has wowed both live and virtual audiences with her vocal talents, performing in Northwood choirs and on Instagram. This month she sat down with The Howler to discuss the role of music in her life.
Armin Abaye and Ansh Talim: How did you first get involved with singing?
I first became interested in singing when I was in 7th grade. After joining choir that year in my old school, I started liking singing as something more than just a task I had to do in class. It eventually motivated me to make covers for fun, along with a cappella arrangements to sing with my friends.
AA and AT: What then inspired you to start your Instagram account?
I started noticing quite a few other singing accounts on there, and I just thought, “why not try it myself?” It was when I first moved to Irvine and I didn’t really know anyone, so I had a lot of free time to sing. I’ve actually temporarily disabled that account for the past few months because I just haven’t had that much time for it, but I might bring it back sometime when junior year is over.
AA and AT: In what ways has choir and singing in general shaped you as a person?
It has probably made me a more confident person. Even though I think I’m still pretty introverted around people I don’t know, I used to be so incredibly afraid of just talking with other people. However, after I started trying to improve my singing, I think it’s helped me take a quite few steps out of my shell.
AA and AT: What’s your proudest moment in your singing career so far?
I think it is either singing the solo that was in “Georgia on My Mind” with Northwood’s Viva Cantar, because working on it in my the soloist lessons really helped me improve my vocal technique. I worked pretty hard on trying to open up and project my voice for that, since the soloists aren’t allowed mics.
AA and AT: Are there any people in your life that stand out that have led you in your music career?
The support that I got from my friends from my old school was probably the reason I started to like music so much. If it hadn’t been their willingness to sing with me outside of school, I probably wouldn’t be so into it today. Apart from them, Ms. Keiko has really helped me remind me of the passion I have for singing during times where I was questioning everything I was doing.
AA and AT: Do you have any plans for the future with music?
In the near future, I’m hoping to continue singing as a vocalist for the Jazz Band here at Northwood and taking choir as a class. I’m also hoping to involve myself with music in college although I’m not exactly sure how yet. Once I have more time, I’ll definitely go back to recording some covers and maybe trying songwriting again, which I only tried out once for the IS2 Genius Project. Whether I post them or not, I haven’t really decided yet.
AA and AT: Do you have any advice for anyone planning to pursue music?
A lot of people know that music is not considered a stable profession, which is true unless you’re one of the few who become very well-recognized for it. But that’s OK. Because even if you don’t plan on majoring in it for college or having it be a full-time job in the future, it is still very possible for you to keep on doing what you’re doing through little gigs, social media, etc. on the side.
Another thing is to try not to compare or compete with others because if you truly like whatever you’re doing, it should not matter what other people think. Music should be something where musicians can mutually appreciate and bring people together, not something where people tear each other apart for insecurities and jealousy.
Lastly, even if the level of talent people are born with is huge, it will mean nothing if they don’t practice and let it grow.
AA and AT: How have you been able to balance your classwork with your singing?
Honestly, I’ve been trying, but it’s not working out as well as I want. It’s probably because it’s junior year, so I’m pretty excited that I’ll have more time next year despite college apps.
AA and AT: If you could change one thing about your singing career, what would it be?
I’ve still got a long way to go with bettering my technique, so it would probably be to have tried out singing earlier than middle school. Maybe I would have taken lessons earlier and thus probably have a better grasp on proper technique.