Saturday, April 19, 2008

Asian American music artists

Susie Suh '02 is a Brown alum who has burst onto the music scene and recently signed a deal with Epic Records. No, I do not listen to her Sarah McLahclan type music. However, I remember seeing an article about her in the Brown Alumni Magazine a couple years ago, and recently, KASA attempted to get her to come back to campus for a performance. She has a very unique voice in that I feel it is lower than the average voice for an Asian American. Some of her music revolves around the struggles of being an Asian American and the stereotypical parental pressures encountered growing up. A lot of her songs are pretty mellow with the take a walk in my shoes kind of feel. She went so far as to simply make the title of her first album "Susie Suh".

After doing a little bit of research, I found an interview with her on ImaginAsian radio, which can be heard at this site: At first, I thought the interviewer messed up her name at the very beginning at the interview. However, she then pronounced it the same way the interviewer did at the conclusion of the interview. I find it interesting that she pronounces her last name as "Sue". I do not know if it is an attempt to further Americanize herself or what, but I have never heard of "Suh" pronounced that way. During the same interview, she discusses her favorite song "Your Battlefield". This song focuses on the trials and tribulations of being a first generation Asian American. The song is about how it was difficult to choose her own career path in the face of her parents believing it was only a hobby and thinking she would eventually become a doctor or lawyer. I read elsewhere that she was glad her parents discouraged her because, like many stars, she turned that negativity into fuel and motivation to succeed and prove herself.

Here is an excerpt from the story about her and "Your Battlefield" in the Brown Alumni Magazine:
'Although Suh concentrated in English at Brown, she continued to write music and she has now signed a major-label deal with Epic Records. "You say that life is a battlefield and you have given me the arms," she sings, addressing her parents. "You say I have to fight, but this is your battlefield." As the song climaxes, Suh passionately proclaims, "I can't fight your war."'

Finally, here is a sample of her music and what I assume (it was the first hit on and ) to be her most popular song "All I want".

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