BEAUTY AND LIFESTYLE PROFILE
With Amanda Somerville (singer Exit Eden, Avantasia, Trillium, Kiske/Somerville)
The American singer, songwriter and vocal coach Amanda Somerville once started her career singing cover songs in local bars in her home state Michigan. Her next step was making solo albums until she was introduced to the European heavy metal scene and signed up for her first challenge: writing the concept and lyrics for `Days Of Rising Doom’, a metal opera under the name Aina , sang by well-known artists such as Glenn Hughes, Michael Kiske and Candice Night and working closely together with producer Sascha Paeth. Amanda also started to work as a vocal coach and lyrical editor for successors such as Epica and After Forever and collaborated over the years with Kamelot, Avantasia, Edguy, Luca Turilli, Mob Rules, MaYaN, Wolfpakk, Serenity, just to name a few. As a lead singer and songwriter Amanda fully displayed her great talent in the recording studio with HDK, Kiske/Somerville, Trillium and recently with her new female power band Exit Eden. But Amanda is not only an amazing talented [and good looking] performer on CD and on stage, she also has this sparkling, vibrant and beautiful personality, which makes her stand out on many levels. Besides the “rock ‘n roll’’ life, Amanda is also a mother of 3 youngsters [her twin girls are recently born] and there is no doubt she has a lot on her plate right now. HeadBangers LifeStyle is happy Amanda found herself time to talk about beauty, fashion, lifestyle and of course music.
Is a good appearance important to you?
,,Absolutely, but I believe it’s the whole package that one presents that’s the most important.’’
Do you consider yourself a `make-up junkie’?
,,Yeah, kind of!’’
Do you have a specific beauty and make-up regime and what are your favourite products?
,,It’s relatively basic, I suppose. I ALWAYS cleanse & moisturize my face in the morning and before going to bed and use a vitamin C serum (from Obagi, the Japanese version – love shopping in Japan!) and a high-SPF sunscreen during the day. I like Obagi (serums, lotions) and Decleor (cleansers, moisturizers) products, as well as La Roche Posay.
As far as make-up goes, I like natural products like Benecos, Lavera and Dr. Hauschka for everyday and MAC, Urban Decay and Ben Nye (their Grand Lumiere palette is my favourite eye shadow!) for stage and special occasions.’’
What make-up style do people recognize you for as an artist and how different is it from your daily life make-up?
,,I’m not exactly sure what make-up style people would say they recognize me for! I guess I do a lot of red lips and cat eyes! Hmmm… My daily life make-up is pretty simple and nothing bold (I’ll take what I used today as an example); a BB cream (Decleor), mascara (Benefit), eyeliner (MAC), blush (Alima) & lipstick (Benecos).’’
Has your make-up behaviour changed over the years (and how)?
,,Yes! I never used to wear “face make-up” like foundation or blush except for maybe some concealer under my eyes until just a couple years ago (thank you, father time & mother nature!).’’
What has been your worst make-up blooper?
,,A loooooooong time ago (and I’m talking when I was playing cover gigs in bars in Michigan), before there was “kiss-proof” lipstick, I used to end up with lipstick on my nose all of the time because sometimes I really “eat” the mike when I sing and then I’d bump it on my nose!’’
How do you deal with a `make-up hangover’ after long touring and late night events?
,,I don’t typically have a problem because I use good products and always cleanse at the day’s end. However, I’m sometimes simply happy to let my skin just be skin and give it a break from everything (and stay in my PJs all day!).’’
How do you treat your hair and how do you deal with a bad hair day?
,,I’ve been lucky with genetics in the hair department! I don’t do much to my hair and use a lot of conditioner. Since I have long, straight hair, I don’t really have bad hair days because there’s not a lot that can go wrong – haha! But sometimes I just want it out of my way and I wear it in a bun anchored with a stick. That happens a lot.’’
What do we mainly find in your wardrobe and where do you buy most of your clothes?
,,Oh, boy… there’s a huge mix of things! I certainly have a lot of sparkly things and black items and I love long dresses. Since I get to “play dress up” so often in my career, I usually dress for comfort on a daily basis. However, when I go out, it’s important to me to look like I care. You won’t catch me in sweat pants and no make-up at the grocery store! 😀 I buy most of my clothes online.’’
Is there anything in your wardrobe in particular you have an `addiction’ for?
,,No, not really. I’m not a brand- or designer-fixated person.’’
How do you come up with your stage outfits and who is Amanda on stage?
,,My stage outfits vary greatly. I only relatively recently began using custom-made outfits from boutique designers, like Dutch designer Ingeborg Steenhorst, because I’ve always put my own outfits together and tweaked them myself to make them what I want them to be. I’ve never been one to spend a ton of money on clothes, so the whole custom-made stage outfit thing freaked me out a little – haha! Who am I on stage? I feel I’m very much me, being one with the music & the moment, the audience, the emotions. I very rarely am thinking about anything other than those things I just mentioned when I’m performing and that’s a wonderful place in which to be!’’
What kind of a neighbour are you?
,,A pretty quiet one, I’d say. But as an American, I’m a food maker, so if someone is new to the neighbourhood, I’ll typically bring them food or drink as a welcome!’’
What do we mainly find in your refrigerator?
,,Lots of dairy products (big cheese & yogurt eaters in my household!)’’
What do you like to cook when you invite friends or family over for dinner?
,,Tex-Mex, Italian, classic meat, potato & veggie dishes (like a whole oven-roasted chicken on top of potatoes, carrots, celery, onions & Brussel sprouts with bouillon) or casseroles. I love comfort food and family recipes!’’
What do you do to contribute to a healthier and cleaner planet?
,,I’m an avid recycler (we have separate trash for bio, plastic, glass, paper, cans, drink containers and then general trash) and I try to repurpose things (I made flannel wipes / washcloths / handkerchiefs out of a flannel sheet that had ripped the other day, for example!); I cloth diaper my daughter and will also do the same with the twins when they’re here; I try to combine trips to make driving in the car as efficient as possible; I’ve got a water carbonator and make my own sparkling water (water is pretty much the only thing I drink – boring, I know!); I turn off all lights and devices / appliances when I’m not in the room using them; I use my own shopping bags; I eat leftovers… I guess I’m a bit of a hippie and just try to be as aware of consumption and waste as possible!’’
How do you like to spend your free time and how does your perfect day off looks like?
,,Reading, learning and researching are passions (oh, and surfing eBay!), so a quiet day at home curled up doing those things is lovely. My husband Sander and I love watching movies together, entwined on the couch (and the rare Netflix binge-watching day!), but also going for a bike ride and being silly. Since starting a family, we love combining those things with our little Lana, who also loves snuggling on the couch in her PJs! On days off on tour, sometimes I’ll go out sight-seeing and shopping or I’ll stay in my room all day, reading, watching movies and ordering room service & a massage!’’
Why should people order `Rhapsodies In Black’, the debut album of your new band Exit Eden?
,,I think it’s a fun spin on great pop songs, both older and newer.’’
What did you learn as a performer, songwriter, and producer over the years?
,,That you can never stop learning and growing; patience is truly a virtue; just because you’re fair or kind doesn’t always mean you’ll be treated that way; you do not need to be a selfish asshole to succeed!’’
For who would you like to write a song one day and hope he or she will record and perform it?
,,Hmm. Not sure about that one! Pretty much all of the artists I admire most are amazing songwriters themselves, so I couldn’t even imagine them singing someone else’s song.’’
What gives you the adrenaline rush on stage?
,,Pretty much the entire experience of performing.’’
Did you always wanted to be an artist since you were a kid?
,,Yep! My Mom said I could sing before I could talk. 🙂 I have recordings of me singing from the time I was almost 2 years old and then all the years beyond.’’
What has been rotating in your IPod or CD player lately?
,,Miles Davis and various Motown artists.’’
What is your life motto?
,,“Do unto others as you would have done unto you.”’’
Follow Amanda Somerville on Facebook and visit her Website here
Photos are taken from Amanda Sommerville Facebook and Website