We had the honour of holding an interview with Aimee Blackschleger, one of Sawano’s many vocalists. Once again thank you to all the fans that submitted questions. Unfortunately we couldn’t hold a video interview, her answers are below!
1. For the benefit of newer fans please tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a singer/songwriter living in Japan! I have been here since I was a teen, and just never left. I have a family now, and so I have adopted Tokyo as my home 🙂
2. Are you from Germany or from America? (This was a popular questions from the fans!)
My Nationality is American, but some of my ancestors are German. I was born in Italy and traveled around the world when I was a kid.
3. Are you a proficient Japanese speaker? Do you speak any other languages?
I speak Japanese well enough to get through daily life. I mostly work with English so I don’t get the opportunity to practice very much. I understand though and can work with people so that’s good!
4. How did you meet Sawano and what made you decide to continue working with him?
I met him through another friend and he introduced him to me for a few recording projects
5. Apart from singing for Sawano are you involved in other musical activities?
Yes, I have a band called “Harp & Soul” and we are an acoustic girls band with a Harp, cajon, guitar and vocals. We do popular songs and lots of originals too! I also do a lot of session work, recording commercials, game and anime songs and educational songs for kids. My main forte is back up vocals. I sang back up at concerts or on TV with AI, Kiyokiba Shunsuke, HY, etc.
6. Do you compose and write your own songs?
Yes. I write lots of songs! I find this very relaxing and fulfilling.
7. Will you take part in the recording for FF13-3 as you were involved with the previous release?
So far I haven’t heard anything yet!
8. What kind of music style would you like to try in future?
I kind of want to do some electronic hiphop and rock fusion.
9. What are your impressions of Sawano? Do you have any funny incidents you can share with us?
He is usually quite busy with the recording session and we work hard whenever I see him. He seems like a serious, talented man.
10. Which is your favourite song that you sang for Sawano and why?
I loved singing “Release my Soul”. The melody of the song is absolutely beautiful and the sadness and emotion was something that I could relate to, since most of my own songs are kind of sad.
11. What are your thoughts on his musical style?
He is versatile, and I am always surprised at the variety of genre and melody he composes.
12. What is your favourite song composed by Sawano?
“Release my Soul”- Guilty Crown
13. Do you have any further collaborations with him in the pipelines?
I just recorded a song for Kill-La-Kill!
14. Why did you choose to come to Japan and develop your career as a singer there?
I was young when I got here and although I loved to sing, I didn’t really come to Japan for that reason. It’s something that just kind of happened!
15. You sang the ED for Panty & Stocking, what were your thoughts on that song?
“Fallen Angel” is a beautiful song and I was happy to be able to sing it.
16. If you could do a collaboration with any of Sawano’s vocalists, who would you choose and why? What type of song would you want it to be?
I think Mika Kobayashi is amazing. Her voice is strong and powerful, I would love to do a harmony with her!
17. How was the experience of performing in Yokohama Arena for the Shingeki no Kyojin live event?
It was a long day, so it was challenging to be calm and not nervous for so many hours. I was on at the end, right when the fire explosions went off, so that was a big noise. BUT it was fun seeing the sea of people and all the smiles and glow sticks from the fans. The whole event was epic and it was great being a part of it.
18. What can we look forward to hear from you at nZk 001 in November?
I hope I am allowed to say but I am singing “Wild War Dance”, and “Release My Soul” and “DOA”, I believe.
19. I heard that you have four daughters! What do they think of your music? Have any of them expressed a desire to be in the music industry?
Kids always tell their parents to stop singing. LOL! My kids also do a lot of session work for commercials and things.
20. Lastly, what would you like to say to your fans from all around the world?
Thank you for your support and questions. I hope you are all doing well, and staying strong with your busy lives of work, school and family. Gambatte! XO. Talk soon!