The composer, sound designer and songwriter goes DIY.
Classical music, dubstep and songwriting might seem like strange bedfellows, but Ema Jolly seamlessly brings them together in her music. Since releasing her first solo single on Ninja Tune in 2009, Jolly has drawn on her background as a student of the piano, digital signal processing and golden-era dubstep to create a sound that takes Bristolian electronic pop into the 21st century. Born with Czech parentage and raised in Milton Keynes, Jolly set off for Bristol before a move to Berlin saw her working with music tech institution Native Instruments and recording the sounds of Berghain for their Fünf compilation. Her self-titled debut LP and the 2013 follow-up, Dva, introduced her to a large global audience, but in recent times she's relentlessly chased her personal artistic goals, from starting her own label, to releasing an album of piano miniatures, to funding an ambitious symphonic composition through Kickstarter. After being backed by a label the size of Ninja Tune, shifting to a DIY operation has given Jolly a renewed sense of what's important about music, and as Mark Smith hears in RA's Berlin office, she's never felt closer to her fans or more satisfied by her work.