Wrapped in a Warm Blanket Episode 17 Breaking Through with Miss Saiko

WRAPPED IN A WARM BLANKET

Angelina Jordan Podcast

EPISODE 17 Breaking Through with Miss Saiko

If you were Angelina Jordan’s manager, what advice would you give her, or which direction would you try and take her? Is that a fair question to ask? No? Our guest didn’t think so either.

Let’s look at it from a songwriting point of view. What type of criteria would you use with the writing of songs for Angelina Jordan? What would it take for Angelina to break through to a worldwide audience?

Miss Saiko (or in this case) Valeria is a singer/songwriter who has, not one, but three songs in the works that she would love for Angelina to sing. And at least one of them is aimed at making it in the charts.

Pontus: Just to start off, I’m very excited about what are we going to talk about? I don’t know. Do you know Alan?

Alan: I think considering we always talk about Angelina Jordan, I don’t think we should change horses in midstream. I think we should keep talking about Angelina Jordan. Should we invite a guest to join us?

Pontus: Yes. Let’s invite somebody. Who shall we pick?

Alan: Well, we can either invite, Miss Saiko or we can invite Valeria, which do you prefer?

Pontus: Miss Saiko sounds nice.

Alan: Okay. Hello, miss Saiko.

Valeria: That’s clever. That’s very clever. Actually. No, it’s going to be Valeria because Valeria writes songs and Miss Saiko doesn’t.

Alan: You made me smile when I saw on your, description that it was a combination of the Japanese meaning of Saiko meaning genius plus psychopath. And that really made me smile because that covered everything, that covered a hundred percent of the spectrum.

– – –

Alan: We are here to talk about a Norwegian singer, who we all know very well. And we are here to speak about how well we know her. And you are the guest, Valeria. And so, when did you first hear of Angelina?

Valeria: Last year, actually. I heard about her with a reaction channel because my friend is a really big fan of hers; she’s a vocal coach. So we were speaking about different, unique voices that we heard. And obviously we said, ‘Okay, there’s that Norwegian girl’. And it wasn’t necessarily for one of us to say the word, we were just, ‘Oh, Angelina Jordan, obviously’. So yeah.

Alan: To my mind, broadly speaking, there are two different types of reactions on YouTube. One reaction, which is most common, is someone hearing her for the first time. And basically they’re saying, ‘Wow, amazing’. And so for me, this category of people, I say, they have more enthusiasm than expertise. And the other type of category is these professional vocal coaches who say things like, ‘Ah, well listen how she has this breath control. And she has these runs and melismas’. And for me this type of reaction is, they’re more professional than passionate. And so we are trying to have someone who is like yourself- who is both a singer and songwriter, come along and fill in the middle ground- who is not going to say, ‘Wow, amazing’, but who’s going to give a different spin and a different type of reaction.

Valeria: Okay. I see. Well, it depends on how I react, if I react in the Saiko mode or in the psychopath mode. Well, Angelina to me is different because, I’m going to speak from my song writing point of view, not from a vocal coach, because I don’t consider myself a vocal coach, but, I have in mind sounds. And when I listen to other singers, I’m like, ‘Okay, this physical voice is good for rock. This voice is good for XYZ style’. But I think where she gets to me is because, she sows for the song notes here and there that suggests that she’s more than what she does on that song. So one time you listen to a song it’s four minutes, but a note could transfer you to Aretha Franklin style, then a note could transfer you to Adele, then a note can direct you to Lana del Rey, and so on. I don’t know if that makes sense, but that’s how I see it. You hear her and say, ‘Oh, I could use this part, the verse I would explode that one on the chorus and so on, and you could use the same notes on another type of song’. And it’s that side of versatility. I’m really hoping it makes sense for you.

Pontus: You’re sort of a speaking now, like a songwriter. So, if you were to be inspired by how Angelina works, this is what you mean.

Valeria: Yeah, because I’m trying to write three songs for her and I have them already started, so…

Pontus: Oh, really? That’s, amazing. Yeah. I, actually went to your channel on YouTube and listened to the singing you do, and I’m really, really impressed. How long have you been singing?

Valeria: Like I don’t know, 10 years old, something like that. Not like Angelina, I’m not a child prodigy that’s for sure.

Pontus: But can you sort of picture where she’s coming from or is that sort of, because for me, it’s like out of this world.

Valeria: That’s the point! No, I can’t answer that.

Alan: I recently made the point that every single word that she sings is a little surprise. Every single word is a little different and it’s really, really difficult to anticipate what she’s going to do with the next word. And for me, this is why she is, I think I have to use the word renewable, why someone doesn’t get too accustomed to her because there’s so many different changes with every song that she makes. And then very, very subtle, it’s the feeling or the texture or the vibrato. Every note, invariably is a little bit different and this to me is an extraordinary talent.

Valeria: Don’t get me wrong, but I will disagree. I will slightly disagree. Maybe it’s because I perceived differently the sentence, ‘Every note is a surprise’. To me when every note is a surprise, when the singing is taking your breath away, but Angelina puts me at ease. It’s a really relaxing mood that she generates for me. And she takes me into her world, subtly, as you said it. But it’s not necessarily a surprise every time.

Pontus: Yeah, I think I know what you’re saying. I don’t know how to put it, but when I listen to her, I’m so relaxed that everything is going to be fine. She’s so confident and you can almost like three words in you can say, ‘Okay, this is going to be brilliant. I’m relaxed now. There’s not going to be any mistakes’. I think what Alan is talking about with surprises is that, how can she do that kind of a sound or how can somebody be like, so creative in choosing how to pronounce certain words or certain phrases and of course, how can she… That tone she gets across. How is that possible to get that across?

Valeria: I think it’s just her being out of this world, as you said earlier.

– – –

Alan: You had a video and you were speaking about Angelina Jordan, you referred to her as a genius. Can you elaborate on that?

Valeria: I mentioned earlier versatility, but if I have to take away the technical side of it, I think it would be because of the silence that she creates for the song. I don’t know if that makes sense, but when you put silence on a song with a very airy technique, breathy and every now and then if you do a wave that gets out of this normality of the sound waves. When you sow here and there a louder note, it… How do I put it? I think that’s what creates impact, because it puts people in a mood where they just listen and they’re relaxed and then every few seconds or every 10 or 15, or so she does another note and creates tension and then explodes a little bit and then slows it down again. And that’s where it captivates you. Because Angelina is not a “wow- type” of sensation. So I think that’s where the emotional side comes in because when you watch a singer, that literally performs and does only high notes, or only insanely low notes, you don’t necessarily connect all the time. So I think that’s where she is a genius.

Pontus: I’m reminded of a French reactor who went through, different songs from Angelina. And he said, ‘Listen to this, in this one she sounds a little bit like Amy Winehouse’. And then he went to the next song and then he said, ‘Now, she sounds a little bit like Elvis Presley and now she sounds a little bit like Dinah Washington’. And he went on and on and he said, ‘That is, why I feel she’s sort of one in a million because she can sound like all of these great artists that have been before her and take on all of those voices and make something that is her own. And that is a sort of, mind-boggling to realize because, I don’t think Dinah Washington or, Billy Holiday could sound like somebody else than themselves’.

Valeria: That’s what I meant when I said that she transfers you or direct you towards different singers, except that in my case, maybe I listen more to music, from a technical point of view so, I don’t need to hear 10, 15 songs to think each time of a different one. Already for a single song you hear here and there planted notes that direct you to those different singers. I’m not saying that in every song, she directs you to 10 singers at once, but I’m saying that at least three, four singers, it does that to you.
And where she would be genius, it’s not that she sounds like those though. I think it’s more like she reminds you of them because I do impressions, impersonations on the side. Maybe you’ve seen that, I don’t know. And it’s really different. And to be honest, when you try to imitate other singers it’s not helpful, because every time you try to sing, while you go into a specific technique, you don’t really adjust it to you. But she does that, and so you need, because you hear Angelina, you know, it’s Angelina, but it still reminds you of, um, a “30- years-ago-singer”. So I think the combination, the slight, like the subtlety of that is genius. It’s not just sounding like other singers.

– – –

Alan: Valeria, you as a songwriter would love to have Angelina do some of your songs. And you mentioned that at the moment, you’re writing three songs for her. What type of criteria are you using with the writing of those songs? Are you trying, for example, to have one jazz and one blues and another pop, or do you have a special criteria with how you approach the writing of the song with having Angelina in mind?

Valeria: I like charts and billboards. So one song for sure is directed towards charts and just making it and having views. So one of them, I chose an Adele inspired song. Because it’s catchy and people will remember it for sure. And it’s because she caught Republican Records attention with Million Miles. And Million Miles is Adele direction, orientation. The second song goes in a bluesy jazzy direction, because that’s where my heart is when I think of Angelina. And it’s Still Holding Out For You parallel, because I think that’s her best work. It’s the one I connect with emotionally most, not technically, but emotionally. And the third one is a combination of Adele and James Blunt and it’s actually a song that I’ve originally written for myself. But when I tried singing it, it sounds basic. And I need a voice like Angelina to make that sound good.
And, yeah, but you said about approaching. I don’t think the fact that she’s being signed with Republic records has to be ignored. You have to think of the marketing side of it. You can’t just write beautiful songs. I know that she will most likely be in history for what she has done, but I don’t think at the moment is the time to do that, because it targets an existing audience and not a potential worldwide.

Alan: If you were her manager, is it fair for me to ask you, what advice you would give her or which direction you would try and take her, is that a fair question to ask?

Valeria: Oh no, no, because I can’t even dream of being her manager, come on.
No, actually the reason I said that Angelina is my dream, is from two, well more, but mainly two reasons is because, one, she’s, well she’s Angelina Jordan and we, you have your podcasts on that there’s no need to develop that anymore I think, not at this point. But the second one is, she’s the hardest for me to approach and I see that as a challenge. So talking about me becoming her manager is really out of the table, because she’s just on a pedestal for me. She’s really doing all the right steps. I’ve analyzed her. I’ve analyzed articles about her. I’ve analyzed every action. It’s just not really relevant, but I’ve analyzed her marketing and the steps that she could potentially take, her Tik Toks. And she’s doing the right steps, so I don’t think I can advice her.

Alan: The thing that strikes me is, she is a type of artist who cannot and will not compromise her art. Her art is so pure. And for example, she is not very specifically trying to reach the young generation if it involves compromising her art, but the nature of who she is and how she is.
I actually believe if someone who is new to her hears one song, which really impresses and then they start investigating her and they get onto what I would call the YouTube train. Then that opens the flood gates, because maybe there’s one song, which is extremely impressive, but a lot of what a really impressive at that Angelina is the full catalog of everything that she’s done, the different styles and the cumulative effect.

Pontus: Yeah.

Valeria: I was ready for a question.

Pontus: Was that question, Alan? What was that?

Alan: Yeah. That was a point of departure.

Valeria: It It sounded good.

Pontus: Yeah, it sounded good.

Valeria: But I’m not sure…

– – –

Pontus: Even now, when I put on an Angelina song, I’m surprised when I hear her voice, even after over a year of listening to her every day. And that is something really special, I think. That she can surprise you that much.

Valeria: And it’s not just the age, because it’s a tone you can identify in a second. It’s not just the age. That’s why it’s so unexplainable. Angelina has a voice that I can’t dream of imitating.

Pontus: When it comes to putting yourself in somebody else’s shoes, it’s difficult to put yourself in Angelina’s shoes because she’s not wearing any.

Valeria: That’s so freaking clever.

Pontus: I try, I try.

Pontus: The philanthropy side of her, if you knew nothing about it, is that something that can be communicated through her artistry? If you’re just listening to her singing.

Alan: The way I would look at that is, I don’t think you can be philanthropic if you don’t really have feeling and love for other people. A lot of people may have a good family life and they may have a secure family life, but the type of open and extreme love that that family unit has is really, really exceptional. And if you just scratch the surface and you look at it, that alone, I think is the huge, huge driving force behind Angelina’s career and her emotional world and her singing and what she’s able to communicate. And she’s quite open about that. And I think that type of love is something which is the basis for philanthropy. Philanthropy is not just actually giving, but it’s a state of mind. And so the state of mind is, ‘Here, I have enough for myself. Let me share it with you’. So even if it’s a pair of shoes, it is a state of mind. It’s not ‘I need more for myself in case I don’t have any in the future’, but, ‘Let me treat you the way I treat myself’.
So it’s really an extension of love, and this is the message that Angelina Jordan really trying to put out there.

Pontus: Yeah, I think so too. And I think that state of mind that you’re talking about is contagious, because I have it now. After listening to Angelina for over one year, I feel that I’m changing as a human. Here in Sweden, the restrictions, have been lifted and me and my wife we were able to go to the cinemas, to the movies for the first time in well over two years and we went to see the Bond movie. This is an activity I was doing before I listened to Angelina and now I’m doing it after I’m listening to Angelina. So, I was struck how emotional I was in the theater. And of course the Bond theme, is sung by Billy Eillish, and I couldn’t help thinking about how it would sound like if it was Angelina Jordan.

Alan: She’s a big fan of the Bond movies. In one of her interview she spontaneously sang Diamonds Are Forever. And it would suit her well, it would suit her very well.

Valeria: I think so. It’s why I said earlier that I believe that she will go into an Adele direction, the next step. Because Adele it’s well, Skyfall was for a Bond movie and then Sam Smith did, um… Oh Yeah, Writing’s on the wall. And I think Angelina, if she goes in that direction, she will be able to write for a James Bond movie.

Pontus: I mean, there’s no question her vocal abilities is quite, like on a whole different level. But how about her songwriting capabilities? Have you looked into that?

Valeria: 7th Heaven to me was recycling Amy Winehouse just for the sake of marketing, because she has to, it’s necessary right now. And her next step will be Adele, but I’m not sure where it will go later on. And I generally think she can put out a classic song, not something that is current right now, and then goes out of fashion, but something that’s like Yesterday from Beatles, something like that. So I would rather have her explore that and then judge, because right now I think she’s doing good at reminding you of existing songwriters.

– – –

Alan: When you say that through the root of jazz is not the way to break through, it’s a really, really interesting comment. That’s something that never would have occurred to me. To me, what she does is every song has like a universal element and she may be singing jazz, but I don’t realize that it’s jazz. For me, it’s beyond categorization. It may be jazz to someone who’s looking for a label, but it’s not how it strikes me.

Valeria: It makes sense. It makes sense that it feels this way. I just remember some YouTube comment that I’ve seen on my video about her and he said that he showed her videos to his daughter, which is like 13. That means Tik TOK generation. And the girl said, I think it was the Beatles or something like that, and then he showed her some other songs. And he said that the girl said, ‘I like her. She’s trick*’ and it stopped there. And then he tried to dig in further, but the girl to look at the looks and at her height and her physical appearance. And then he tried to show that to other younger people, but it was a similar response. They categorize her as jazz. I think she can’t make it through with a jazz song just based on that. Even seeing her non jazz performances, people already think of jazz when they listen to her. That’s why I said she really has to go away from pure jazz.

Alan: She may have jazz in her DNA, but, because people like Pontus and I have heard like 99% of her songs, we can give so many examples, which are not jazz. For example, she did How Great Thou Art, which was covered by Elvis Presley and she did it in such a spiritual way that whatever you call it, you could certainly not call it jazz.

Pontus: No, that’s true. And she also did like an EDM.

Alan: Electronic Dance Music

Pontus: Yeah, what’s it called? Below the Water?

Alan: It’s either Above the Water or Below the Water.

Pontus: Above the Water, Above the Water.

Alan: Yeah.

Pontus: And I’ve also read in an interview once that she was open to remixes of her songs. I don’t know the industry, but she mentioned somebody that she looked up to when it comes to remixes. And she said, ‘Oh, I would really like him to do a remix of my songs’. And so I think she’s very open-minded about how to use her vocals.

Alan: I would like to be a fly on the wall. For example, in the Stargate studio, when she’s working with the music production with her Norwegian team and they’re hammering out the song, exactly what input she has and what input the others have. That would be really interesting because, she may write the song, but she must have other input at various stages. And that would be really interesting to see how that sort of, dialogue happens.

– – –

Pontus: Very interesting stuff from you, Valeria with the songs you’ve been starting up.

Valeria: I hope it’s interesting, but I’m sure it’s not that interesting. You’re just flattering, but thank you for the support.

Pontus: I’m being serious.

Valeria: I will send you what I wrote. I’m going to try to rerecord it just at least that part, that you listened to.

Pontus: Okay. Yeah, that would be really interesting.

Valeria: And you will tell me what you think.

Pontus: And we will keep it under wraps.

Alan: Once you give us the green light for playing that little musical excerpt, that might just be the tipping point to allow Angelina Jordan to contact you and say, ‘Oh yes, please write me a song’.

Valeria: I really think she’s a genius and when she will hear it, it will be just one thing amongst 10 other things that she does. But, I’m going to try my best. Okay.

Alan: Thank you ever so much Valeria. We appreciate having a celebrity like yourself on the podcast.

Valeria: I’m not a celebrity.

Alan: No, no, but…

Valeria: I think of you the same. And it’s not even you’re celebrities, you’re the thinkers, the Angelina Jordan thinkers, observers. And I’m just some girl on YouTube that really wants to write songs for her. So thank you.

Pontus: Let’s wait like five years and see who’s the celebrity then.

Valeria: I don’t think Alan wants to be one.

Alan: No, I’m… I like the quiet life, I like having a nap after breakfast and then a nap after lunch. I like the quiet life.

Pontus: Okay.

 

* Trick = you dress and act like you want to. Apparently this is now a super-positive term amongst the TikTok generation.

6 Comments

  1. Linda Brockinton

    Everyone who has ever written a song has given you a piece of their heart. I think her special ability is to find that peace…. she is aware of the heartfelt feeling the writer was trying to covey…. She finds those heartfelt feelings the song was written to say. Then she seems to able to internalize it and give it back to us full of the feelings the writer had. That’s what is missing often in a new song. It’s just words and maybe some nice music. But occasionally a singer will find something that touch’s them usually because they have felt it…. Those are the winners.

    Angelina has an empathy that most singers don’t have. She gets the songs, feels the pain or happiness and she wants you to feel it too. I’ve heard so many of the coaches say after listening to a cover song that they won’t listen to the original again because Angelina captured their heart with feelings. Words you can buy the or write for the sake of having a new song, music you can hire anyone to do but you can’t buy empathy and the ability to share it.

    My fear is that people won’t let her be herself, pick her songs, dress her up like someone’s play doll , push her to sing different styles and push her till she will just crank it out for the money. … we have lost so many young artist who couldnt cope with the pressure. Pleas just leave her alone and let her do what she does. She’s only 15. I can see it already. Photo shoots in silly clothes go go go travel …. I don’t think people do well mentally with handlers. Handlers are for animals. She needs to be surrounded by love and family at this age. Just my opinion after 75 yrs of living and music. Love me some Angelina!!!!!

    • Adriaan Rijllart

      Hi Linda, I agree with you that Angelina should make her own choices. She is so talented that she doesn’t need to be pushed into doing things just to get more attention. I often see comments that Angelina should do this or that to break through. But does she really need to get famous soon? Is that important to her? I don’t think so. I think the most important thing for her is to develop further the way she chooses. I see that she is well surrounded and protected by her family and I hope that it will stay this way. The fact that she has not broken through yet is a good sign to me, because it means she is following her own path. And I hope she will continue to do that. Thanks again!

    • Lisa Pedro

      Dear Miss Angelina Jordan?:
      I wish you only well, and I would like you to give me a moment of your time,and dream that you read this. It’s for you…
      October 13,2021
      Imagine if Colors were to represent emotions,…
      O! They’d be Big! Bright as Yellow notions!
      Only to fade, in the sun’s light, to White, with every little lie.
      Then, out of the clear sky,
      Came the hue of Blue tears that make you cry, From the pain! From the pain! Instead of rain
      Leaving you mean and Green for the one who sits pretty in pink with your Red-Hot love, the one you’re left dreaming of, and no reason why.
      Giving you a Purple Heart,, all used up and torn apart. So, as All the colors run through clouds with Silver linings, and somewhere over the rainbow, as the story is told, will be a true love more precious than Gold!

  2. Stephen Barrass

    A perfect song in my opinion would be “FEVER” the old Peggy Lee song. Perfect genre, Older people would possibly remember it, but a class song of its type

  3. Mike

    Thanks for this interview. Valeria is one of the most interesting music analysts on the web. She’s a breath of fresh air and seems to speak of Angelina in a very realistic way. It’s rare that reactors actually have something interesting to say, but she always does. It’s also very good to hear some objective criticism now and then, to help keep us somewhat grounded in our Angelina obsession.

  4. Fabrizio Chiti

    I would ask her songs where she opens up her voice. She did it in all three performances of AGT and all her most successful covers

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