I have been discovering what makes AMiR tick…
and why he decided to record the song, Slow Hands – a cover of the Niall Horan track. I ask whether there is new material planned and what he gets up to in his free time. He discusses his musical influences and whether his parents encouraged his talents at a young age.
AMiR looks at the future and reveals upcoming tour plans; what it feels like gaining the support of the BBC Asian Network; what London is like in terms of inspiration and the people – he selects a few albums that have made a big impact.
Hi, AMiR. How are you? How has your week been?
I’m all good. My week’s been great. I was writing in Liverpool.
For those new to your music; can you introduce yourself, please?
I’m AMiR and my music is Funk/Soul/R&B-Pop.
Slow Hands is your new track. What was the reason for covering the song (originally performed by Niall Horan)?
After One Direction split to do their own thing; Slow Hands was a track, I thought, was my favourite of all of the new stuff from each member.
I just wanted to put my spin on it.
It has already gained acclaim and praise! Have you been surprised by the reaction?
I was surprised. I love the song and loved writing it - and I’m just super-glad that the people out there are enjoying it.
Can we expect new material? An E.P., maybe?
You can always expect new material. I’m working on a lot of new songs and I’m always writing and trying to create. So, yes; you can.
Has your Asian/Punjabi background impacted your music and sound do you think?
I don't think the fact my father is Punjabi has played much of a part in my music, to be honest. The man, himself, was listening to James Brown and George Michael.
It’s my mum who is the Michael Jackson fan - and he is my favourite. I think, regarding the family background side of things, the fact they never stopped me dreaming of being a musician. That's played the big part - as appose to having a Punjabi father.
Tell me about the artists that inspired you to take up music. Which musicians made an early impact?
Michael Jackson is where it all starts for me. Later George Michael, then Craig David; Eminem, Oasis; Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers; George Benson, James Brown and Bob Marley.
I love all of these guys - but it starts with M.J.
BBC Asian Network has championed your work. How humbling is it to you?
I really love and appreciate how the Asian Network is backing me. I’m very thankful and will continue to push on and make more music.
London is where you are based. What is the city like? Do the people provide inspiration?
London is home. I’ve been to so many places to write music and to get inspired. People are different every city you go to; so, I allow myself to soak up the vibes of that place. I’m not one to stay in one place for too long...
There is no place like home.
If you had to choose the three albums that mean the most to you; which would they be and why?
Bad by Michael Jackson, Definitely Maybe by Oasis and The Marshall Mathers LP by Eminem. These all had a major impact on my music and life.
Can we see you tour soon? What gigs do you have coming up?
Yes. I’ll be on the road soon. I’m opening for Jocelyn Brown at London’s Jazz Café and I’ll be opening for The Jacksons, in Scotland, at the Royal Highland Centre in July. More shows to be added soon.
What do you hope to achieve, personally, in 2018?
I (just) hope I keep making music - and more and more people listen and like it. I’ll always keep writing - but I feel like people's response is really keeping me going…so more of this will make 2018 perfect.
Do you get time to hang away from music? What do you get up to?
When I’m not creating, I love going out with my mates: snooker hall, watching football; boxing and drinking too much. Nothing to do? Get drunk with people you love.
What are your aims and ambitions for the rest of this year?
There’s a few things - but (just) performing, in general, is what I feel I was meant to do. I love to write and create new music. Performing that music is the icing on the cake: that's what makes any struggle worth it.
Finally, and for being a good sport; you can choose a song and I’ll play it here (not any of your music - I will do that).
Bruno Mars (ft. Cardi B) – Finesse (Remix)