Based across the pond in the city of angels, Spare Pages is the formidable collaboration between American performance poet Azure Antoinette and Aussie singer/songwriter Emily Rex.
Together they create a vocal fusion that’s hard to find anywhere else, a poignant and powerful, story-driven style that isn’t afraid to tackle the big issues, and stand for those who have nobody else. With a new single, a video project and smatterings of other projects in the works, we caught up with the pair of musicians for a chat.
What happens when a poet and a songwriter get together? Investigate the origins and stylings of vocal duo Spare Pages, straight from the artists themselves.
HAPPY: How did you two first meet? What were your first impressions of each other?
EMILY: We met through a mutual friend on Facebook and my first impression of Azure was that she loves to laugh and is super confident.
AZURE: Mutual friend, who at the time I didn’t know. Shauna saw an ad for clothing retailer The GAP on Facebook featuring me. She reached out and we became great friends. She spoke to me about her housemate, Emily, we all started group chat – the rest is history.
HAPPY: When did you realise you two had a musical connection?
EMILY: As soon as Azure picked me up from the airport, the music she was playing was straight from my childhood. On the trip, we talked about what music meant to us and we shared a lot of similar feelings about it. What I also came to learn early on was that I would learn so much from her. She became one of my inspirations.
AZURE: Within the first few days of her arriving in the States. Hands down, I think she has one of the great voices of our time. What surprises me to this day is how effortless her talent is. I know it has to do with divine destiny, people can sing well enough, but her voice is something else. She’s a titan.
HAPPY: The Spare Pages Goes Off series is great fun. Do you think either of you put on a bit of a persona for the camera?
EMILY: Not at all… literally what you see is our type of conversations everyday! When we first met, I loved making her laugh and she started poking holes in all my theories. I’m always right, Goes Off has so much to do with her repeating what I’ve said out loud and then defining it. But no matter what, I’m still right, even when I’m wrong. Luckily, people think it’s funny too. To be honest we would still make film clips even if we were the only two people that found it hysterical.
AZURE: Oh, I wish it was a persona. Goes Off is pretty much a look into what our actual interactions as humans looks like. I summarise the clips as the moment when the camera should have been off, and then we decided to air the outtakes. She moves my whole soul. Life is short when you’re having a good time, but it’s incredibly long when you’re not having fun. Life right now is lightning speed with this one.
HAPPY: Illuminate is out very, very soon. What’s the best part about this song for you?
EMILY: For me, the best part is when Azure says, “Don’t turn around, coz you’re not going that way” to remind us that there is always hope from the place we’ve just come and the fact that she is saying it to a second person means we are not alone. Personally I always try to see the positives in my situations. If Illuminate can bring someone light and hope in their life, that is an act of service – singing and helping others are the only things I want to do for the rest of my life, so this song is a win win.
AZURE: Illuminate is my favourite song in our catalog. I listen to it daily, because I need the encouragement. Those lyrics are so real, and when she sings them, I believe it. Favourite part? The whole damn thing.