Emily Wells is an NYC-based violinist who also sings and plays a bunch of other instruments. Not sure how I came across Emily, but I’ve been pretty addicted to her 9th album, Mama. (I can’t believe she’s come out with 9 albums and I’m only just now hearing about her.)
Like many good things in life, I had to peel away a couple of layers before I really began to connect with Emily’s music a few weeks ago. One morning, I skimmed through the first few tracks on Mama and wasn’t grabbed by it initially, until I got to track 5, Johnny Cash’s Mama’s House. Amazing.
Style wise, Emily’s music is all over the place while still managing to sound cohesive. One minute she sounds as if she’s been plucked off a Kate Bush or Bjork album and the next she sounds as if she’d be comfortable trading country tinged lines with Shelby Lynne.
But the real selling point to the record for me is the subtle violin touches throughout. I’m a sucker for some strings and I’ll be damned if I’ve heard any used as beautifully as Emily uses them on the album.
The album itself is very up and down tempo wise, and my preference is for the more upbeat tunes. But the whole record is worth a listen. Be patient and give Mama a few listens AFTER you check out Johnny Cash’s Mama’s House below.
*Emily Wells’s 9th album, Mama, is out now via Partisan Records.
Emily Wells “Johnny Cash’s Mama’s House”