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UNT sophomore named on NPR’s ‘North Texas 20 under 20 list’

UNT sophomore named on NPR’s ‘North Texas 20 under 20 list’

UNT sophomore named on NPR’s ‘North Texas 20 under 20 list’
November 24
09:26 2019

Meet Amari Green, better known as Amari Amore, the singer-songwriter whose tracks steeped in dreamy vocals paired with acoustic guitar recently received recognition from NPR.

Green is a music performance sophomore at UNT and has been performing for five years. In October, NPR’s Slingshot, a branch of the station that puts a spotlight on emerging local talent and broadcasts them nationally, published their 2019 North Texas 20 under 20 list. The Booker T. Washington grad was featured and being placed on the list was a surprise to her.

“I was blown away by that, like I had no idea,” Green said. “There was like an Instagram story post and it was a clip of my song. I thought it was someone just discovering me, listening to my song.”

Then, Green’s producer shared the link to the story with her.

“My producer, he was like, ‘check out this link, like NPR,’” Green said. “I was like, ‘that’s crazy.’”

Andy Jones, Denton-based recording engineer and Green’s producer, said he was proud seeing Green on the list. He was scrolling through his Twitter feed the morning the article was released when he saw Charlie Memphis, another emerging performer featured on the list.

“It was this image of Charlie Memphis, so I’m like, dang, Charlie got an NPR nod, right on. I click the story and there’s Amari,” Jones said. “So I text Amari, “Hey, congratulations on that NPR piece.” She didn’t know, I had to send her the link.”

Neither Green nor Jones expected the nod from NPR due to the “quiet release” of her music and smaller-scale of production compared to other artists on the list. Green describes her music as folk/soul but more of a singer-songwriter category.

In the video clip on Green’s NPR feature, she can be seen strumming her signature marble wood guitar and singing “Tides,” which is a track on Green’s EP “Complications.” The EP, which was released last November, is Green’s first.

“You Don’t Know Me” is another track on “Complications” that was released as her first single to tease listeners for the EP that followed.

“It was kind of difficult to choose a song because they could all stand on their own, but they’re meant to be in a unit,” Green said. “But ultimately, we decided on ‘You Don’t Know Me’ being the single.”

Green said the process of creating the EP was laid-back.

“It was a simple process,” Green said. “I went to a home studio with my engineer, my producer and I worked on it with the guitarist and a drummer from high school. The recording process was super chill and super easy.”

Justin Weed, guitarist and friend of Green, met in high school where both studied classical guitar and they have performed together since. Weed describes Green as a natural in performance.

“She is a calming, but also hilarious, energy and an extremely dedicated artist,” Weed said. “Collaborating with Amari always felt very natural. She has a great understanding of herself and the way she sounds.”

Green also cares about her audience and providing new content for them to listen to since she does a lot of live performances.

“I just wanted to release something, you know, just have an audience listen to something because I’ve performed live a lot around Dallas,” Green said. “So, I wanted to have something that people could listen to. It got pretty good results.”

Green said it took three months to record and complete “Complications” with little difficulties along the way. However, the meaning behind the EP’s title is heavily drawn from Green’s personal difficulties.

“The process of writing, I was just dealing with a bunch of personal issues like relationship issues, just everything was super complicated,” Green said. “It’s about self-discovery and realizing, different things going on within certain toxic relationships that I had and just figuring out ways to cope with certain things and make it out kind of OK.”

Jones said Green shared audience reactions to the EP on Instagram.

“Amari had shared really cool reactions on Instagram of people dancing to the songs,” Jones said. “Like, legit students of dance doing these beautiful interpretations of her music. I would get choked up watching these things.”

Green said she wants to perform more often and expand her musical tastes. She looks to continue her music journey at UNT, which she said is in a cool city, especially for musicians.

“The music scene is pretty great, and I know some people [who] graduated before me that came here and went to the school of music,” Green said. “I just thought, why not [attend UNT], it’d be a cool experience. Hopefully just make some more connections.”

In addition to her music supporters, Green also has a very supportive family. However, she is the only musical one in the family.

“They support me in everything that I do, like financially, morally,” Green said. “I couldn’t imagine what I’d be doing if I didn’t have family supporting me. I literally don’t know where it came from, no one in my family does music. I feel like they all can appreciate music and all like listening to music, but they’re not musically inclined at all.”

Green has a live performance coming up at Opening Bell Coffee in Dallas on Dec. 1.

Featured Image: Amari Amore, 19, poses for a portrait in the student union. Image by Quincy Palmer

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Raven Jordan

Raven Jordan

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