Emily Elbert
Gig Seeker Pro

Emily Elbert

Los Angeles, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2006

Los Angeles, California, United States
Established on Jan, 2006
Solo Folk Soul

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

Music

Press


"Catch Her While You Can: Emily Elbert"

Coppell native Emily Elbert, who now resides in Brooklyn, N.Y., never forgets to come back home. So before she heads west for tours of California and Southeast Asia, Elbert is going to wrap up 2012 with a performance at the Kessler Theater. The show will feature some of her well-known originals, which can be found on 2011’s concert recording Alive, In Love, new songs and a spate of choice covers.
Over the years Elbert has whipped up acoustic arrangements of her fave songs by legendary artists Joni Mitchell, Marvin Gaye, Willie Nelson, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and Al Green. The 24-year-old singer, songwriter and guitarist knows those tunes are live-show staples.
Joining her onstage at the Kessler are special guest singers Nadia Washington, a graduate of Dallas’ Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and Elbert’s alma mater Berklee College of Music, and Allie Farris, who grew up in Lewisville and is now based in Nashville. The show starts Dec. 28 at
8 p.m. The Kessler Theater is at 1230 W. Davis St., Dallas. Tickets are $15-$19.75 at thekessler.org. - The Dallas Morning News


"The ABCs of singer/songwriter Emily Elbert: Accomplished, bright, creative – and so much more"

Singer, songwriter and guitarist extraordinaire Emily Elbert, 24, started collecting awards and carving out a niche for herself in the music business at a very early age.

In 2006, she won Berklee College of Music’s Summer Performing Songwriter Contest and was named Rookie of the Year by The Dallas Morning News.
She attended Berklee on a full scholarship, graduating in 2011 with an artists’ diploma.
In 2007, she was selected to attend the Grammys and won first place at the Texas Music Project’s “Texas 10 Under 20” contest.
She was a New Folk Finalist at the Kerrville Folk Festival in 2008. The same year, WUMB Radio in Boston named her Best New Artist of the Year.
She won Scotland’s 2009 Burnsong International Song Contest.
Glamour magazine named her one of the Top 10 College Women in 2010.
She’s been the opening act for Leon Russell, Joan Osborne and Marcia Ball, among others.
She’s already released three records, “Bright Side” (2006), “Proof” (2010) and “Alive, in Love” (2011).
Her YouTube channel has collected more than 1.5 million hits.
Elbert recently returned from a six-week gig in Asia, and is about to head out on a quick road trip to California.
On April 20, she’ll be in concert at Crossroads Music in Winnsboro.
She took a few minutes to talk about her years at prestigious Berklee, living in New York and being in charge of her career.

News-Telegram: How did your time at Berklee College of Music improve your musicality? Songwriting? Performing? Guitar playing?
Emily Elbert: Being at Berklee was incredible. The community is so diverse, and so full of life – it’s just rich with great musicians from around the world.
I didn’t study songwriting, or very much voice or guitar either, actually – but I did take some classes that were really enriching.
I took a lot of percussion classes, studying rhythms from other cultures, and I think that affected my guitar playing quite a bit. And Livingston Taylor (James’ brother) teaches a fabulous class on performance techniques.
But mostly, Berklee was about the community. So many of my favorite musicians are my peers from school, and I draw from them a great deal of inspiration – and collaborations as well. Before Berklee I had pretty much only played music alone.
That changed very quickly, which definitely affected the way I approach music as a whole.


Emily Elbert

N-T: You're staying pretty busy ... what's it like, being an independent musician, running your own affairs?
EE: A bit crazy, honestly. The music itself, I adore, of course.
But the behind-the-scenes aspect, the booking and the logistics, is definitely more than a full-time job. I think that’s something that most people don’t realize – how much legwork actually goes into making the tours and recordings happen.
That being said, though, it’s all worth it. I do it because, above all, I love playing music for people. And I really believe in what I do. It brings me so much joy, and I want to share that love with others.
Hopefully before long I’ll find the right team to help me out, but for now I’ll keep chipping away. These days, if you want to make it in the music industry, you have to be willing to give it everything you’ve got.

N-T: Is living in New York essential to an up and coming artist?
EE: Certainly not for everyone. But I’m a bit addicted – I’m totally wild about it.
Brooklyn has the most electric creative scene – so many young artists and thinkers, and so many interesting, cutting-edge things going on. Being there is a huge source of inspiration for me. It brings me a lot of joy, and I’ve met so many wonderful people there.
But there is great music coming from all corners of the globe – and today, in the internet age, anyone can share their music with the world, regardless of their geography.

N-T: Your dad is a musician and plays gigs with you from time to time. That must be fun.
EE: Absolutely. We didn’t really play together when I was younger, because I was too shy – but now it’s very special to me. I admire him so much.

N-T: Your voice is so clear, true and versatile. Did singing come naturally to you ... or did you have to work on it?
EE: I’ve always wanted to sing, but was afraid for a long time. It wasn’t until I started playing guitar that I realized couldn’t hold it in anymore, and I began working up the confidence to sing in public.

N-T: You were selected as one of the top 10 college women by Glamour magazine. That must have been a thrill.
EE: Absolutely. The other girls were so inspiring, too. I still keep in touch with a few of them – it was a great honor to be a part of that group.


N-T: It seems that all of your press has been positive, with critics falling all over themselves to promote your music. That must be nice.
EE: Haha. Well, you’re very kin - The Sulphur Springs News-Telegram


"The ABCs of singer/songwriter Emily Elbert: Accomplished, bright, creative – and so much more"

Singer, songwriter and guitarist extraordinaire Emily Elbert, 24, started collecting awards and carving out a niche for herself in the music business at a very early age.

In 2006, she won Berklee College of Music’s Summer Performing Songwriter Contest and was named Rookie of the Year by The Dallas Morning News.
She attended Berklee on a full scholarship, graduating in 2011 with an artists’ diploma.
In 2007, she was selected to attend the Grammys and won first place at the Texas Music Project’s “Texas 10 Under 20” contest.
She was a New Folk Finalist at the Kerrville Folk Festival in 2008. The same year, WUMB Radio in Boston named her Best New Artist of the Year.
She won Scotland’s 2009 Burnsong International Song Contest.
Glamour magazine named her one of the Top 10 College Women in 2010.
She’s been the opening act for Leon Russell, Joan Osborne and Marcia Ball, among others.
She’s already released three records, “Bright Side” (2006), “Proof” (2010) and “Alive, in Love” (2011).
Her YouTube channel has collected more than 1.5 million hits.
Elbert recently returned from a six-week gig in Asia, and is about to head out on a quick road trip to California.
On April 20, she’ll be in concert at Crossroads Music in Winnsboro.
She took a few minutes to talk about her years at prestigious Berklee, living in New York and being in charge of her career.

News-Telegram: How did your time at Berklee College of Music improve your musicality? Songwriting? Performing? Guitar playing?
Emily Elbert: Being at Berklee was incredible. The community is so diverse, and so full of life – it’s just rich with great musicians from around the world.
I didn’t study songwriting, or very much voice or guitar either, actually – but I did take some classes that were really enriching.
I took a lot of percussion classes, studying rhythms from other cultures, and I think that affected my guitar playing quite a bit. And Livingston Taylor (James’ brother) teaches a fabulous class on performance techniques.
But mostly, Berklee was about the community. So many of my favorite musicians are my peers from school, and I draw from them a great deal of inspiration – and collaborations as well. Before Berklee I had pretty much only played music alone.
That changed very quickly, which definitely affected the way I approach music as a whole.


Emily Elbert

N-T: You're staying pretty busy ... what's it like, being an independent musician, running your own affairs?
EE: A bit crazy, honestly. The music itself, I adore, of course.
But the behind-the-scenes aspect, the booking and the logistics, is definitely more than a full-time job. I think that’s something that most people don’t realize – how much legwork actually goes into making the tours and recordings happen.
That being said, though, it’s all worth it. I do it because, above all, I love playing music for people. And I really believe in what I do. It brings me so much joy, and I want to share that love with others.
Hopefully before long I’ll find the right team to help me out, but for now I’ll keep chipping away. These days, if you want to make it in the music industry, you have to be willing to give it everything you’ve got.

N-T: Is living in New York essential to an up and coming artist?
EE: Certainly not for everyone. But I’m a bit addicted – I’m totally wild about it.
Brooklyn has the most electric creative scene – so many young artists and thinkers, and so many interesting, cutting-edge things going on. Being there is a huge source of inspiration for me. It brings me a lot of joy, and I’ve met so many wonderful people there.
But there is great music coming from all corners of the globe – and today, in the internet age, anyone can share their music with the world, regardless of their geography.

N-T: Your dad is a musician and plays gigs with you from time to time. That must be fun.
EE: Absolutely. We didn’t really play together when I was younger, because I was too shy – but now it’s very special to me. I admire him so much.

N-T: Your voice is so clear, true and versatile. Did singing come naturally to you ... or did you have to work on it?
EE: I’ve always wanted to sing, but was afraid for a long time. It wasn’t until I started playing guitar that I realized couldn’t hold it in anymore, and I began working up the confidence to sing in public.

N-T: You were selected as one of the top 10 college women by Glamour magazine. That must have been a thrill.
EE: Absolutely. The other girls were so inspiring, too. I still keep in touch with a few of them – it was a great honor to be a part of that group.


N-T: It seems that all of your press has been positive, with critics falling all over themselves to promote your music. That must be nice.
EE: Haha. Well, you’re very kin - The Sulphur Springs News-Telegram


"Emily Elbert "Proof" Album Review"

For those who have been following Emily Elbert's career from the beginning, you will note that she has been at the forefront of the do-it-yourself movement, from her personal myspace message years ago, "Have me come play at your college," to her jet-setting across the US and to foreign countries for performances.

Emily has played with some of today’s greatest pop songwriters, and she’s called her friends and family to aid her in management, publicity, and to be her musicians. She has, in her own way, developed a strange, wide-ranged family network all looking out for Emily because she really, honestly, in real life, is as sincere and laid back as her music.

It’s this humbleness mixed with her drive to succeed that has allowed her to soak in her experiences and let them evolve her songs.

2004’s Bright Side was testing the theory that Emily Elbert, the small, blonde-haired Texan could live in Boston, Massachusetts, could surprise the world with her powerful jazz voice, impressive vocal range, and mad acoustic guitar playing; but the album is, as Emily put it herself, “Not what I am anymore.”

Proof by Emily Elbert | Angelica-Music

2010’s Proof includes songs Emily has been playing live for years, meaning they were not spat out for the record, but rather part of her continuing songwriting practice. Comfortable with the songs now, the recording is so relaxed and uplifting that you might put the album between James Taylor and Jack Johnson. Yet overall the self-released Proof is a jazz record, and Emily’s voice and melody choices could have you placing this album between Norah Jones and Jewel.

Then again, songs like “Thinking Hybrid Redirected” are clearly from the perspective of a modern-day thinker, very current, as in the way she says, “You’ve got charisma and you’re so PC” on “Tightrope Walk”. She’s old school in a new school of thought.

Opening with “In the Summertime,” a crooning praise of sunshine and heat, and romance sparked therein, Emily sets the precedence, the poetry of her lyrics. “You’ll bring your charcoal pencils…I read Thoreau and kiss your blackened hand,” she lays on us so lightly that if we are too swept up in the vibe we’ll miss its eloquence and detail.

“Do Without” comes next, a heavier, faster blast of womanhood. “I am wise enough to keep my crying inside,” she delivers.

Just as suddenly, however, we’re given the title track, Emily’s cool voice backed by cello and mandolin, and it’s so jazzy you’ll need to rethink your whole perspective on the album.

From there on the songs leap from her three personas, the barefoot hippie, the young city dweller dealing with her own grown-upping, and the sap, all of which are adorable. Only Emily can get away with saying, “I was not a fool/For believing in you/…Just over my head,” as on “Not a Fool.”

As introspective as she can get, Emily also thinks globally. “We’ve got coal black smokestacks filling up our lungs,” she muses on “To Stay Alive in the World”. She adds, “Let’s not forget we’re still revolving around the sun.”

Musically, Proof is sparse, quiet, with surprises from hand percussion and piano. The album is mixed beautifully. I am ever grateful for albums where the vocals can be heard, in this age of gloomy folk rock where the lyrics are hidden under the resonance of guitar. So, thank you, engineer Stephen Webber. It sounds great the whole way through.

At times there are layered electric guitar, and the music is heavier, and you almost wish Emily would trade in her acoustic, just for a section, to crank out and rock. She’s more than capable of it. But that would jostle the listener too much from the slower paced melodies. Smartly, Emily holds back. She is inviting everyone into her fan club.

The only fault may be her slower love songs, of which there are three standout numbers that are very safe tracks. I like the rocking Emily more. I like the one that says, “Now I’ll learn to do without,” over the one that says, “This time last year I just loved you way too much.”

Still, you can’t blame a girl for feeling something and singing it with complete heart.

So what sets her apart from both her contemporaries and the stars we know that she embodies in spirit?

Well, listen in: that’s Emily playing guitar. She’s got an undeniably infectious style of playing. Like her voice, together, the two instruments can be heard smiling, scowling, laughing, or advising; expressive beyond compare. She writes them, plays them, and sings them.

Emily’s not bound by others’ standards, or by her own ambition. She’s bound to an ideology, and if you listen to Proof all the way through, your mood will change. You will slow down and enjoy the simple parts of your day. You will get the feeling that everything’s not only going to be okay, but that it’s been good this whole time. For the lover in all of us. - angelica-music.com


"Pop music: Emily Elbert of Coppell and Liz Longley seize the moment"

Michael Granberry
Arts and Features
mgranberry@dallasnews.com
Published: 15 February 2012 06:22 PM

For pop musicians in their early 20s, times have changed. Gone are the days when David Geffen’s secretary would fish a demo tape out of the trash and say to her boss, “You really ought to listen to this again,” and Jackson Browne would suddenly have a career.

For Emily Elbert and Liz Longley, who share the bill Friday night at Uncle Calvin’s Coffeehouse, carving out a body of work is a journey of independence and courage. Elbert is 23, Longley is 24, and both are graduates of the esteemed Berklee College of Music in Boston.

Elbert has released two CDs, Longley one, and all three were released independently. Both women maintain a fierce touring schedule, one that has taken Elbert, a graduate of Coppell High School, to Europe, South America, Southeast Asia and to Jewish and Palestinian neighborhoods in the Middle East.

“It’s challenging but really rewarding and definitely interesting,” Elbert says. “The really positive thing about it, the reason why I still want to wake up and do it like this every day is because it enables you to choose your own adventure. The way the music business is now, there is no model, so you can create the career you want.”



Both are masters of the Internet. Next month, Elbert will release her third album, Alive, in Love, an undertaking funded entirely by fans through cyberspace.

Longley first heard of her Berklee classmate after Elbert recorded a cover of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” that went viral on YouTube.

“There was a huge buzz around Emily at Berklee. I saw the Michael Jackson video and thought, ‘Wow, that girl can play, that girl can sing,’” says Longley, a Pennsylvania native who recently moved to Nashville, where she’s hoping to push her own career into overdrive.

Longley and Elbert promote themselves through Twitter and Facebook, and Longley recently enjoyed a crescendo of success through a competition for young songwriters on Sirius XM satellite radio.

Her song, “Unraveling,” a searing ballad about a grandmother dying of Alzeheimer’s disease, is a gem that enjoys a much wider audience because of the Sirius competition, which Longley won.

Despite the tsunami of change in the music business, both women credit such songwriting legends as Browne, James Taylor and their shared role model, Joni Mitchell, with shaping their own careers 40 years later.

“People like Joni Mitchell and Jackson Browne are really the pioneers of real, real honest, kind of heart-on-your-sleeve music, and that’s more possible now because they set up the foundation,” Elbert says. “Now, you can write honest music, but since you can release it yourself, there’s a whole sort of new level of honesty and connectivity that’s enabled, especially with the advent of the Internet and the breaking down of the big-label structure. What’s possible now is a really direct artist-to-listener connection, so you don’t need some middleman in a suit with a big check tellin’ everybody what’s happenin’.”

Plan your life

8 p.m. Friday at Uncle Calvin’s Coffeehouse, in the fellowship hall of Northpark Presbyterian Church, 9555 N. Central Expressway, Dallas. $15 in advance, $18 at the door. 214-363-0044. unclecalvins.org.
- Dallas Morning News


"Glamour Magazine's Top 10 College Women 2010: the Musician"

The Musician
Emily Elbert, 21, Berklee College of Music

Her dream: “To continue my career as an international singer, guitarist and songwriter.”

How she’s reaching for it: Elbert will never forget her fourteenth birthday, when she received a guitar as a gift. “That night, I went into my room and played until my fingers bled,” she says. Seven years later, she has won awards on both sides of the Atlantic for her talent, and she’s performed for audiences as diverse as parliament members in Scotland, art students in Puerto Rico and club-hoppers in Peru. She made her first CD in high school and used the profits from it and her local performances to get her start at Berklee. In September she debuted her second album, Proof.

What’s on her iPod: “Alphabetically, I have everything from Aaliyah to ZZ Top.”

Read More http://www.glamour.com/sex-love-life/2010/09/meet-the-top-10-college-women-of-2010-amazing-women-you-havent-heard-of-yet#ixzz1r6EDAWGX
- Glamour Magazine


"Accolades keep coming for Berklee senior and rising musician"

By Matt Rocheleau, Town Correspondent

On her 14th birthday, Emily Elbert played her brand-new guitar the same way Boston sports fans follow their beloved teams – until it hurt.

So it seems natural that the teenager from Texas who strummed away for hours – until her fingers bled – on that first night with her first guitar would later move here and create a "second home" for herself in a city known for its thick-skinned attitude.

“I just tried to keep going,” said Elbert, recalling that memorable night.

“When you get an instrument like that, it’s yours to transform and yours to build your own sound. I was so eager and energized about it that I just couldn’t stop,” said the 21-year-old folk and jazz artist.

She has produced two albums – “Proof” released a week ago, and “Bright Side,” which debuted in 2006 – and launched her music career while transitioning from her high school near Dallas to Berklee College of Music. The college senior has received nearly a dozen awards in the four years since “Bright Side,” including “Best New Artist of 2008” from local album adult alternative radio station WUMB-FM.

Her latest honor: In its October issue, Glamour Magazine included Elbert among its 10-most-impressive female college students.

“Remember the names of this year’s winners – you’ll be seeing them again,” says Glamour.

Elbert hopes so, and in a phone interview Saturday, one day before performing a show in Canton, she said she was honored by the recognition.

“I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone,” said Elbert, who first received the news in May. “So I was excited, but quietly excited.”

Like with her first guitar, it was love at first site for Elbert when she visited Berklee and Boston for the first time several years ago.

“It was over. I was like ‘OK, that’s it, I have to come to Berklee,’ ” she said recalling her tour of the college while deciding where she wanted to study after high school. “There are so many students and so many great musicians ... and it’s always sort of glowing and evolving.”

In between touring and writing and recording new music, Elbert takes advantage of that learning atmosphere. At Berklee, she has learned to play new instruments, like the drums and bass, beside her prior knowledge of piano – her first instrument – and guitar.

Her newest album was co-produced with a Berklee professor and musical contributions came from a “rotating cast of Berklee alums” from the United States, India, Mexico, Israel, Brazil, and Japan.

“It was really a fun, exciting experience, because it just encapsulated all of that passion that I feel around Boston,” said Elbert of the recording experience. Her first album was all done back home in Texas when she was 17, “But, this is a new chapter of my life – my Boston record. I produced it here, I wrote the songs here, and the players are all back here.”

Balancing college life and her personal endeavors has been a whirlwind for Elbert, who lived in the Back Bay near her school until recently moving to the Fenway.

“It’s quite a juggling act. But, Berklee is great because they’re very flexible and encouraging and most of my teachers and a lot of administrators are all musicians, so they come from a really understanding perspective,” she said. “It is a lot to try and do both, especially as you play more and put a new record out. It’s crazy. But I love being at Berklee.”

Staying connected with fans is especially important, Elbert has found.

Even before she had discovered her passion for the guitar, millions of people, many her generational peers, had already discovered how to illegally share and download copyrighted music on-line. Trying to launch a career in the music industry has never been easy, especially when your fans have found a seemingly guilt-free way to circumvent the normal process by which artists are paid for making music.

Nevertheless, Elbert remains optimistic.

“It’s sort of a tricky equation really, trying to figure out where the balance lies. It is a completely new business,” she said. “A lot of people are saying ‘Oh, the music business is dead,’ but it’s being reborn. There is no longer really a mold where you say, ‘OK, this is how I should go about it,’ because really you have to create your own.”

For her, it has meant using the Internet to promote herself, connect with fans on her website and through social media, and to experiment with other ways to be paid for her hard work.

Like most people her age, she is not entirely sure of what she wants to do after college in the next few years or where she wants to be.

“I’m just kind of playing it by ear. I have a lot of goals, but my goals are musical, and career-wise. I love being in Boston right now. It’s my home base, and I just want to continue to travel and connect with people,” she said.

Three days before heading to Hollywood for a second show celebrating the release of her second album, Elbert will host and perform at her first CD release - Boston.com


"Emily Elbert Opens for Ruthie Foster at Crossroads Coffeehouse and Music Company, Winnsboro, TX"

See article:

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcontent/dws/ent/stories/DN-fosterelbert_1217gl.ART.State.Edition1.36bb329.html

See video:

http://www.guidelive.com/entertainment/video/index.html?nvid=201651&shu=1 - The Dallas Morning News


"Elbert brings fresh face to folk"

April 17, 2009

by Meredith Lee
Verb Editor

Review: The boast, "Everything's bigger in Texas" was just validated. Emily Elbert may be from a small town outside of Dallas, but the 20-year-old songstress has huge potential to be the next big folk artist. With a piano teacher for a father, it's no wonder that Elbert's music talents exceed expectation. Yet, her powerful pipes are a pleasant surprise considering she looks like a baby-faced version of Joni Mitchell. She sounds like a smooth combination of Norah Jones, Diana Krall, and, at moments, even a bit like Etta James.
Elbert released her first album, Bright Side, to critical and popular acclaim before she even began collage at Boston's Berklee College of Music. The freshman stint even won her the grand prize in the Texas Music Project's Texas 10 Under 20 contest in 2007.
The reason why is self-evident: the album's mellow tracks easily lend themselves to relaxation and are peppered with brilliant vocalizations and flashes of true talent. The "bright side" of Elbert's first professional endeavor comes down to "I Feel Fine" and "Beautiful."
To the delight of the listener, the influence of a childhood filled with James Taylor and B. B. King echoes in these two tracks. Her otherwise soft-spoken album gets a soulful jolt with the vocal stylizations presented in "I Feel Fine." The only downside to Bright Side is the youthful optimism of Elbert's tracks teeters on feather-light and superficial.
Three years have passed since the release of Bright Side, but the singer/songwriter has been anything but idle. Now a junior at Berklee, she has managed to find the time to balance academics and promoting her music.
"It's a juggling act, for sure. And that's another reason why I'm glad I'm at Berklee, because I can take courses and build relationships that endure the flexibility of my education," Elbert said in a recent interview.
"I make sure that when I sign up for my classes, (that) all my teachers are cool with me leaving all the time. It's a heavy load to be on the road a lot and do schoolwork but you know, I guess it's like anybody who has a full-time job outside of school," she added.
Heavy load, indeed - in 2008, she was a featured performer at the North American Folk Music Alliance held in Memphis, Tennessee and since then she's also performed with G. Love and with Tyler Bryant, a fellow Texan and up and coming blues guitarist. But what's even more exciting, Clifford Carter, who has worked with James Taylor and Art Garfunkel, will also produce the upcoming album.

"Bright Side" a refreshing listening experience

The tracks from her new album, which is yet to be named, only show even more promise from Elbert. An experimental bit of slap-guitar and greater exploration with her vocal range in "Thinking Hybrid Redirected" prove that her second album will prove to be anything but sophomoric. And while "Easy to Love" echoes her first album in its almost ornamental guitar plucking, the depth of her voice makes the track sound sultry and mature. The full album is expected to be released in either May or June, but you can sample the tracks on her MySpace page at myspace.com/emilyelbert.
If you find yourself in love with Elbert's music - and you should - think about seeing her live. Her next show will be on Sunday, April 19 at 8 p.m. in Keene at Armadillo's Burritos and opened by Katerina Polemi and Ali Rapetti. Visit armadillosburritos.com for more information and ticket sales. If you can't make it on Sunday, she will be performing with Chuck E. Costa in Portland, ME at The North Star Music Cafe on April 23 at 8 pm.

- The New Hampshire


"Lunching with Future Stars"

August 6, 2009

By Edward A. Brown

What do Aerosmith, the Dixie Chicks, and John Mayer have in common?

Berklee School of Music degrees.

So when Berklee offers a free concert over lunch today, it's a chance to be able to tell your friends that you were there before Emily Elbert hit the big time.

Elbert, named Best New Artist in 2008 by UMass Boston's radio station WUMB, is a 20-year-old singer-songwriter from Texas attending Berklee on a full scholarship. She will be the 10th performer in the school's annual summer Kendall Square Concert Series, which features students and alumni playing original jazz, Latin, hip-hop, rock, folk, funk, and reggae.

The concert begins at noon today, Thursday, August 6, at the open-air plaza in Kendall Square, 300 Athenaeum St., Cambridge. The event is free and open to the public. To get there by MBTA, take the CT2 bus or the Red Line to Kendall Square.

Check out Elbert covering Michael Jackson’s Thriller below. She posted it to YouTube after his death “as a small tribute.� - BU Today - A publication of Boston University


"A Serious Talent - Emily Elbert"

A serious talent

No 'Idol' aspirations for 17-year-old Emily Elbert - she wants to make it her way

09:59 PM CST on Friday, November 3, 2006

By THOR CHRISTENSEN / The Dallas Morning News

The Dallas area has churned out lots of female pop stars, from LeAnn Rimes to Kelly Clarkson to the tabloid magnet Simpson sisters.

Emily Elbert would prefer not to be the next name on the list.

At 17, the Coppell High School senior has no shortage of talent. Her dusky voice sounds as if it belongs to a soul-jazz singer twice her age, and she wrote all the songs and co-produced Bright Side, her impressive debut CD.

The thing is, she'd rather be a musician than a star, thank you.

"Being on MTV is not really my goal," she says, "and I don't think I'm what they're looking for either."

While the music biz hunts for the flavor of next week, Ms. Elbert studies the timeless artists of yesteryear. She'll bend your ear about Buddy Guy's amazing guitar solo on "Red House," or the way Ella Fitzgerald made her voice sound like a horn section.

And while her peers plot the quickest route to stardom, she plans to study the next four years at Berklee College of Music, the prestigious Boston school that has trained the likes of Branford Marsalis, Diana Krall and Melissa Etheridge.

In August, she got a taste of Berklee by winning a scholarship to its five-week summer program: "It was the best experience of my life," she says. "Everybody's doing what they love – and that's the coolest thing to be around."

In a sense, she's been around it her whole life. Her father is Roland Elbert, a local keyboardist who plays on commercials and at private events. Her grandfather, Henry Roland Elbert, was a professional sax player.

At first, Ms. Elbert wasn't so sure about joining the family business. She took piano lessons at the urging of her folks but hated to practice. All she really wanted to do was listen to 'N Sync CDs and study tae kwon do, in which she earned a black belt.

That all changed in seventh grade, when she got an acoustic guitar and fell under the spell of John Mayer and Jack Johnson. Later, she graduated to Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix. And everything clicked when she immersed herself in world music and jazz – the former by way of Paul Simon's The Rhythm of the Saints, the latter via vocal jazz summer programs at the University of North Texas.

"Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Nancy Wilson .... oh my gosh , there's so much going on there," she says. "I learned to approach jazz vocals like they were instrumentals, to listen to Stan Getz play and say, 'I want to sing like that.' "

Bright Side mixes jazz with soul and folk into a style she dubs "funky acoustic." Her dad played keyboards on the CD and his colleague Bob Gentry played bass and co-produced the sessions at his New Masters Studio in Tyler.

But this definitely isn't one of those albums where the adults do the heavy lifting and the kid just shows up and sings.

Ms. Elbert played the guitar parts and wrote the 11 tunes. "River," "Stars" and "Garden of the Sun" are from the Emerson-Thoreau school of writing, with lyrics inspired by nature, the cosmos and her favorite stomping grounds, Grapevine Springs Park in Coppell. But she doesn't want to come off as some teenage hippie-dippy.

"A lot of these songs sound like I'm surrounded by utopia and everything is great, but that's not always the case," she says, pointing to "Beautiful," a song about society's inability to solve problems.

She recently released the CD on her own label, and she hopes she can sell enough copies to pay her way into Berklee: She was awarded a $14,000 scholarship for each of the four years, but the school costs more than $30,000 a year, meaning she'll have to move a lot of discs to make up the difference.

That's a tall order for an obscure teen singer, but she's building momentum. Earlier this year, she won honorable mention in the Texas Music Project's "10 Under 20" contest, and Monday she performed live on Good Morning Texas. Friday night she opens for Smile Smile at Standard & Pours, and she's also lined up gigs at the White Elephant Saloon (Nov. 19) and Uncle Calvin's (Jan. 26).

"My age is a really odd crinkle in this whole thing," she says. "People will listen who wouldn't necessarily stop and listen if I were a middle-aged musician."

And the flip side? "Other people say because of my age, I don't know anything."

But at 17, she already knows some essential truths about music, such as the fact that TV talent shows aren't a smart career move for her.

"A lot of people say, 'Hey, you can sing – I think you should try out for American Idol!' And I appreciate that. But dial-in votes? That's not what I'm really interested in."

Instead, she dreams of modeling her career on the likes of Beck and Bob Dylan, two artists who "always did their own thing."

"You do have to make compromises sometimes," she says. "But if some [record label] say - The Dallas Morning News


"Talented Newbie"

From The Dallas Morning News, 12/21/06
by Thor Christensen


Talented Newbie

Local rookie-of-the-Year honors go to Emily Elbert, the 17-year-old singer-songwriter and guitarist who released her promising debut CD, Bright Side. The Coppell High senior is one of 30 teenagers named recently to the 2007 Gibson/Baldwin Grammy Jazz Ensembles. In February, she travels to Los Angeles to perform at pre-Grammy events and attend the awards telecast.
- The Dallas Morning News


"Gibson/Baldwin Grammy Jazz Ensemble, 2007"

THE GRAMMY FOUNDATION® SELECTS STUDENTS FROM ACROSS THE NATION
TO PARTICIPATE IN PRESTIGIOUS
GIBSON/BALDWIN GRAMMY JAZZ ENSEMBLES PROGRAM



SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Dec. 13, 2006) — The GRAMMY Foundation® announced today that 30 talented high school students from across North America have been selected for positions in the 2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz EnsemblesSM. Their selection launches them into the spotlight surrounding the 49th Annual GRAMMY® Awards, and provides them with unparalleled opportunities to rehearse and perform in front of some of music's biggest names. Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have partnered with the GRAMMY Foundation since 2003 to provide students with this extraordinary musical experience.

The students, who represent 25 cities, 14 states as well as two Canadian provinces, will travel to Los Angeles for a weeklong musical adventure under the direction of Justin DiCioccio of the Manhattan School of Music and Dr. Ron McCurdy of the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music. The Ensembles will then perform at various GRAMMY Week events including public performances at Catalina Bar and Grill (Feb. 7) and the Vic (Feb. 9). As a grand finale, they will perform at the GRAMMY Celebration after party, as well as attend the 49th Annual GRAMMY Awards on Feb. 11 as guests of The Recording Academy®.

"The Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles provide the kind of once-in-a-lifetime adventure for young artists that can be transformative," said GRAMMY Foundation and Recording Academy President Neil Portnow. "These talented young vocalists and instrumentalists come to Los Angeles during GRAMMY Week to experience the power and possibility of music firsthand — playing with their peers from across the country and with GRAMMY-nominated artists in several GRAMMY Week events — and many say it is the most positive and influential career opportunity they've had to date."

Again this year, Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have teamed up with the GRAMMY Foundation to sponsor the 2007 Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles. "Gibson Guitar and Baldwin Piano have a longstanding commitment to music education and to demonstrating the lifelong benefits music can offer a student," said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitar. "Each year, the Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles program brings together gifted young musicians and rewards them with a chance to perform with some of the world's greatest talents."

The International Association for Jazz Education provides outreach to the music education community to help ensure the program’s success. The Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles selectees are eligible for more than $2 million in college scholarships made possible through the GRAMMY Foundation's college partners: Berklee College of Music, Manhattan School of Music, New School University and USC Thornton School of Music. In addition, every Gibson/Baldwin GRAMMY Jazz Ensembles program applicant and their high school will receive music product from MakeMusic!, including subscriptions to SmartMusic®, the complete music practice system by MakeMusic! Additionally, each selectee’s school will receive a professional cymbal courtesy of the Zildjian Company.

The GRAMMY Foundation was established in 1989 to cultivate the understanding, appreciation and advancement of the contribution of recorded music to American culture — from the artistic and technical legends of the past to the still unimagined musical breakthroughs of future generations of music professionals. The Foundation accomplishes this mission through programs and activities that engage the music industry and cultural community as well as the general public. The Foundation works in partnership year-round with The Recording Academy to bring national attention to important issues such as the value and impact of music and arts education and the urgency of preserving our rich cultural heritage. For more information, please visit www.grammyintheschools.com.

Gibson Guitar is known worldwide for producing classic models in every major style of fretted instrument, including acoustic and electric guitars, mandolins and banjos. Gibson's HD.6X-Pro Guitar System represents the biggest advance in electric guitar design in more than 70 years. Founded in 1894 in Kalamazoo, Mich., and headquartered in Nashville since 1984, Gibson Guitar Corp.'s family of brands now includes Epiphone, Dobro, Valley Arts, Kramer, Steinberger, Tobias, Slingerland, Maestro, Baldwin, Hamilton, Chickering and Wurlitzer. Visit Gibson Guitar at www.gibson.com or www.gibson.com/press.

The mission of the International Association for Jazz Education is to assure the continued worldwide growth and development of jazz and jazz education. As a part of that mission, the Association initiates programs which nurture and promote the understanding and appreciation of jazz and its heritage, provides leadership to educators regarding curricula and perf - Grammy Foundation News Release


"CD Review: Emily Elbert's Bright Side"



Friday, November 17, 2006
CD Review: Emily Elbert's Bright Side

By Chad Jones

* Email
* Print
* Tell us your story
* Comment (1)

The problem with reviewing 17-year-old singer/song-writer Emily Elbert’s debut album, Bright Side, is that there aren’t enough suitable adjectives in the English language to describe her talent (y mi Espanol no es bueno). What comes to mind are obvious words such as "electrifying," "arresting," "heavenly," "breathtaking," "hypnotizing," and "serene." This being said, I will humbly attempt to put into words the sheer awesomeness (yeah, ‘awesome’ is the best I can do) which coats every word that floats from this University of North Texas student’s lips.

Hearing Emily Elbert sing for the first time gives rise to a sequence of emotions very similar to the Five Stages of Grief.

First. there’s DENIAL: symptoms include confusion and disbelief that such a powerful and mature voice could come from anyone younger than thirty years old—especially someone so petite.

Second, there’s ANGER: symptoms include discomfort and jealously; your own personal lack of talent, in the face of Emily, makes you hate yourself.
"Bright Side" MP3s Album cover art

* "I Feel Fine"

* More on Emily Elbert

Third is BARGAINING: symptoms include lying to yourself or playing rationalizing games in your head in an attempt to reassert your questionable worth; having recognized Emily’s talent, you might mutter things like "well, at least I can . . . write pretty good . . . and I drive a . . . decent car . . ."

Fourth, there’s DEPRESSION: symptoms include not wanting to live any longer.

Fifth is ACCEPTANCE: where you decide, for whatever reason, to continue clinging to your graceless existence, knowing full well you’re not worthy enough to shine Emily’s shoes, though she doesn’t seem to wear them too often.

All hyperbole aside, Bright Side is a fresh and powerfully-positive, eleven-track album that focuses heavily on Nature. While spats with spouses are usually the main inspiration for singer/songwriters, Emily prefers to focus on, and sing the simple praises of, the great outdoors. In most of the assorted tracks, a few of which are titled "Stars," "Bluebird," "River," and so on, Emily sings cheerfully, sometimes hauntingly, about the beauty of the world and of immersing yourself in it. She describes walking shoeless in the woods, laying in the grass, and climbing trees—you know, those things we did when most of us were youthful, not dead inside, and there was no MySpace.

Picking the best and most emotive song out of this all-together amazing album is a toss-up between "Beautiful"—a soft, sultry, bongo-drum-peppered track wherein Emily’s shows the somber side of her predominately chipper sound—and "Garden of the Sun," a light-hearted melody characterized by the soft, elegant rhythm that flow from Emily’s acoustic guitar.

If an astonishing voice and complimentary instrumental skills aren’t enough for you (though they ought to be), Emily is also a competent and imaginative lyricist, as evidenced by "Garden of the Sun":

"Sing the songs of twilight as we cast away our troubles,

Our shadows are the echoes of today."

But what will set Emily Elbert apart from most artists is her age, which no doubt works in her favor; being a mere seventeen years old makes her considerable talent all the more rare. Not only that, but, on the whole, her youth imbues her sound and style. If she were any older, her subject matter, enthusiasm, insight, and voice would probably be different, less powerful, and less invigorating.
See more stories in:

* Arts > Popular Music > Singer / Songwriter

print-specific ad here.
Comments
Erin Rice Staff

I'm convinced. I MUST listen to this CD now.

4 months, 12 days ago ( Link to this comment | Suggest removal )
Add your comment

Requires free registration.

Username:
Password: (Forgotten your password?)

Comment:

Calendar

Previous month Next month
March 2007S M T W T F S
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Jump to

* Today's events
* Pegasus Picks
* Submit an event

Today

Disney's High School Musical: The Ice Tour What happens when you combine Disney's High School Musical with figure skating? You get pure marketing genius, that's what. More info

* 7th annual North Texas Jazz Festival
* Southern Alliance 2
* Dallas Symphony Orchestra - Bach: Mass in B Minor
* Nichole Nordeman
* Hit the Lights / All Time Low / Valencia / The Secret Handshake

* All today's events
* Pegasus Picks

Square Pegs blog

* Chris Farley was a genius
Alan Cohen
* "What we call the news"
Mike Orren
* More reactions from Paris, TX
Alan Cohen

See more
Latest comments

* kirk on KBA Group voted "most dynamic business in Addison and North Dallas area": It's true. - Pegasus News


"New Interview and Video Performance: Emily Elbert"

New Interview and Video Performance: Emily Elbert

By Alan Cohen

* Email
* Print
* Tell us your story
* Comments (3)

There is no question, Emily Elbert is the most talented singer-songwriter I have heard since I began working at TexasGigs. At only 17 years old, Emily already has all the tools that a great songwriter needs - an extraordinary voice, sharp lyrics, rhythmic sensibility, and an intuitive understanding for how these tools work together musically. Yet, what strikes me most when I listen to her music is how Emily is able to let her spirit shine through every note and every word.

It was a real pleasure to sit down with Emily for an interview late last week. In the interview, we discussed:

-How Emily's family influenced her path into music

-When she first started performing music

-How she began writing and singing

-The music that has influenced her

-Her study of music at UNT and Berklee

-Her album Bright Side

-Her goals for the future

Click Here to listen to the full interview
Emily Elbert performs 3 songs @ Pegasus News offices

* Watch now
* Subscribe to the Pegasus News Video podcast

See more stories in:
None
print-specific ad here.
Comments
hakoop Anonymous

Dude I hate quiet singersongwriter junk.

But she is unreal. That video blowz you away. Woahy.

How old is she?

4 months, 15 days ago ( Link to this comment | Suggest removal )
Alan Cohen Staff

Yea I know hakoop. She is absolutely the real deal.

Only 17 years old, just incredible.

4 months, 15 days ago ( Link to this comment | Suggest removal )
Chad Jones Staff

I forgot to ask her to marry me before she left the office.

4 months, 15 days ago ( Link to this comment | Suggest removal )
Add your comment

Requires free registration.

Username:
Password: (Forgotten your password?)

Comment:

Calendar

Previous month Next month
March 2007S M T W T F S
1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Jump to

* Today's events
* Pegasus Picks
* Submit an event

Today

Disney's High School Musical: The Ice Tour What happens when you combine Disney's High School Musical with figure skating? You get pure marketing genius, that's what. More info

* 7th annual North Texas Jazz Festival
* Southern Alliance 2
* Dallas Symphony Orchestra - Bach: Mass in B Minor
* Nichole Nordeman
* Hit the Lights / All Time Low / Valencia / The Secret Handshake

* All today's events
* Pegasus Picks

Square Pegs blog

* Chris Farley was a genius
Alan Cohen
* "What we call the news"
Mike Orren
* More reactions from Paris, TX
Alan Cohen

See more
Latest comments

* kirk on KBA Group voted "most dynamic business in Addison and North Dallas area": It's true. You have to wonder what the playing field looked like when an accounting firm is named "m...
* Interestedcitizen5 on Two young Dallas boys killed in car crash: You miss the point. The point is not that trees shouldn't be planted at all, or even outlawed. The p...
* sixlet6 on Alfredo Trattoria: Can you get the salad dressing recipe?...
* alan on Thursday Morning Cupcheck: I think it may have been satire. The closest thing the Rangers have had to a mensch is this guy:...
* jenn on Dallas' Katy Trail set for landscaping makeover: Not sure what an "urban outdoor enthusiast" is exactly, but I guess I am one because I use the Katy ...

See more recent comments
Things you can't miss

* Safer Dallas Better Dallas holds Steering Committee meeting at Dallas PD Headquarters, presents new website
* Pegasus News launches largest local elections database anywhere ever
* Deal: Macy's Spring Sale and Clearance

* Today's best events
* Find a restaurant
* Find a drink special
* Find a deal

Latest news stories

* DART to hold meeting on new Green Line
* Fort Worth ISD students to make up snow day on April 6th
* Mansfield employees receive grants for "Thinking Inside the Bus"
* Rufino Mendoza students rewarded for winning Mavs Reading Challenge
* Verizon grants $40,000 to Dallas Women's Foundation

See more stories

Copyright © 2007 Pegasus News, Inc.

About Us | Contact Us | Work with Us | FAQ | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Advertising | Investors
- Pegasus News


"CD Review: Emily Elbert's Bright Side"

From Buddy Magazine, December 2006
by Tom Geddie

Emily Elbert
Bright Side
Full Sun Records

On the back of her new CD, Bright Side, Emily Elbert looks all of eight years old, lazing in the grass in her tie-dyed t-shirt. On the front, she might pose for 14. She’s 17, though, and poised on the front edge of a long music career that includes a four-year scholarship at Boston’s famed Berklee School of Music.
Maybe she’s one of those timeless people wise beyond their years, she certainly sings and writes older than 17. A third-generation musician living in Coppell, she wrote, arranged, sang, played acoustic guitar, and co-produced all of the songs on Bright Side, accompanied by her father. Roland Elbert (keyboards), Nick Pencis (drums), and co-producer Bob Gentry (bass and percussion).
It’s Ms. Elbert’s CD all the way, as she wanders maturely through easy, jazzy, mostly feel-good vocals with a still-sweet voice unsullied by the world’s woes. Cheers to the promises of youth, as Elbert sings of belonging to the river “since before my birth,” and that we can be “the mountaintop where the air begins to stop.”
- Buddy Magazine


"Strumming Her Way to Fame"

From The Coppell Gazette Star, April 19, 2006.

Strumming her way to fame:

Young guitarist selected to compete at Texas music festival

BY STEPHANIE HUTSON, STAFF WRITER

When Emily Elbert speaks, she doesn’t sound 17 years old. She seems too connected, too in touch with life for someone so young. And in the age of pop queens and rap kings, her taste in music isn’t exactly mainstream teenage fare either.

Emily, a Coppell High School junior, is one of 10 young adults selected from across the state to participate in the Texas Music Project sponsored “Texas 10 Under 20” competition. She will be playing and singing two original songs as part of the Dallas International Guitar Festival held this weekend at Dallas Market Hall.

“I will be performing two songs that I wrote myself, “All Is Love,” I played for the high school talent show and won fist place,” she said. “The other one is a newer song called “Take it Easy” and it is the song I submitted to the contest. It is kind of a relaxed song about enjoying life.”

Emily’s music doesn’t fit neatly into modern genres, but is more a combination of folk, jazz and cultural influences, and her mellow, enjoy life style dominates her fist CD, recoded in Tyler over the weekend.

“I really try to find inspiration in everything,” Emily said. “There is so much beauty in everything around us, and a lot of the time I tend to focus on the joyful essence of life in general and having fun. I write some about spirituality and nature, and the Cd is titled ‘Bright Side’ – that gives you a general idea of the theme.”

As far as attaching a recognizable name to her style of music, Emily says she has been compared to Jack Johnson or Norah Jones, but she listens to and draws inspiration from music originating from different regions, cultures, and genres.

“I love all 60’s folk genres, and I really like reggae and music from South America, Africa and France,” she said. “I like Jimmy Hendrix, The Polyphonic Spree and The Beatles.”

Emily says that the cultural influences are evident in “Bright Side.”

“With this new material, you are beginning to be able to see musical influences of other cultures from around the world, and it is becoming more apparent as I am getting more comfortable with it,” Emily said. “I love all music in general – everything I hear influences me in some way or another.”

For Emily, music is the ultimate form of expression, and it is that ability to express that drives her passion for writing, playing and singing.

“I really love expression, in any form. I cherish connections between people here and throughout the world and the energy people have with one another, and that doesn’t always come through with words along,” Emily said. “I am most comfortable expressing myself with music, and I can express feelings that can’t be confined with words. Music is the purest currency of emotion.”

Within the past year Emily began writing and singing her own music, but she still enjoys the opportunity to cover another artist’s work.

“I love to play others’ music and make it my own. It adds a different and interesting twist to things,” Emily said. “Most of the time it is at home, but I like to play some Bob Marley, James Taylor and Cat Stephens.”

Emily comes from a musical family. Her d ad is a pianist and her parents enrolled her in piano lessons when she was younger.

“I started off with classical piano training for seven years and I was into that pretty heavily,” Emily said. “I was doing 25 competitions a year and I liked it, but it was not really what I was looking for.”

While piano was not her passion, she found the experience invaluable. “Now, I’m so glad that I had that training because it created a basis for continuing music education on my own,” Emily said. “Three years ago I started playing the guitar and singing and I really started writing my own stuff last year.”

While she has been involved with music for most of her life, Emily still feels some apprehension about performing. She has recently become more comfortable on stage due to the increased number of gigs and contests she has been involved with.

“I got pretty used to performing as far as piano goes, but singing and playing guitar is still relatively new to me,” she said. “I didn’t sing in front of anybody until eighth grade, and I am just now getting to a point where I am comfortable and really enjoy singing in front of people.”

Emily has begun to book more performances lately as a way to raise money to fund a five-week workshop at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. She will be playing at the Wreck Room in Fort Worth on Friday, in addition to Sunday’s contest performance.

“I’m trying to get my foot in the door and foster a good relationship with the school so I can go to Berklee and advance my career in music.” Emily said.

Emily is also hoping that CD sales will help pay for her Boston trip. - Coppell Gazette Star


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

Emily Elbert weaves together a rhythmic funk-folk blend of introspection and celebration. With a global, D.I.Y. spirit, she has carried her music around the world, playing over a thousand independent shows from Peru to Palestine. Anchored by intricate guitar work and an old-soul voice, Emily’s songs offer progressive perspective while paying tribute to the timeless. She has independently released four albums, and two new singles, “Letting Go / Here & Now”, in November 2016.

Recently, Emily spent a year touring as a member of Esperanza Spalding’s experimental music and theater project, “Emily’s D+Evolution”. The group recorded an album to wide critical acclaim, and played shows ranging from the Late Show with Stephen Colbert to the Sydney Opera House.

Solo, Emily has had the honor of opening for acts including Leon Russell, Victor Wooten, G. Love & Special Sauce, and Richie Havens, and collaborated with artists ranging from Ben Taylor to Dweezil Zappa. Her music has garnered praise from publications like the Washington Post, Utne Reader, and Glamour Magazine, and won awards in the U.S. and U.K.. Through authentic song sharing, she strives for a deepening sense of human and spiritual connection that is accessible to all.

Band Members