Local girl Ana Vee has only been singing professionally for a little over a year but she's already making a name for herself. Her hit "Hawai`i" shot up the radio charts and the Shazam App thanks to a little shout-out on Instagram from pop icon Janet Jackson. That turned into an invitation to join the music legend on stage during her tour stop in Honolulu last year. Vee shared with Talk Story what it was like to sing with The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.
"She's so amazing," said Vee. "She's so humble (and) down to earth. I felt very welcomed."
Vee's says she was anxious even after meeting Jackson. "Then we go backstage and now I'm waiting for the actual show. Hearing people come in. I'm hearing it get loud. This is my second performance on Oahu. Everything is happening very quickly. I'm about to get on stage and I just remember being very nervous but also very excited to be performing with Janet Jackson at home, about Hawaii."
Vee says she wrote the song while in Los Angeles and feeling homesick. "When I wrote the song I was missing home. Some people call it an anthem. I wasn't thinking this is going to be an anthem. I just thought I hope this will resonate with people who love Hawaii or who have visited Hawaii. You know, feel very connected. To get the love across the board has been amazing. "
Having fans actually sing her song back to her is "like a dream come true," said Vee. "To see people really resonate with what you write, what you are saying. They were looking at me like you're doing this for Hawaii. And I am. Even after the performance people were like you made Hawaii proud. That's all I want, especially being from here. It's a dream come true to see people sing back the song and do the ah, ah and do the motion. "
About Ana Vee:
Born and raised in Aiea, local girl Ana Vee, represents a new sound and style emerging from female artists with roots in Hawaii. As a new artist she is merging her childhood influences with her love for neo-soul, hip-hop, rap, reggae and '90s ballads. The singer-songwriter splits her time between the islands and Los Angeles.