We were so excited when we had the opportunity to interview singer/songwriter Emily Warren. You may not know her name, but you have most likely have heard her songwriting work (The Chainsmokers – “Don’t Let Me Down”). Well, the Grammy-winning artist is back with a new song of her own and we got to chat with her about her responsible songwriting, her new single, “Something To Hold On To” and a lot more!
We hope you enjoy the chat as much as we did. So we are proud to introduce you to Emily Warren!
Lemonade Magazine: Hey Emily! Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. How’s it going?
Emily Warren: Of course, thank YOU! Everything is going great, thanks!
LM: We have been trying to keep up with all of your numerous ventures, but your first single, “Hurt By You”, is outstanding! We would enjoy knowing the origins. What inspired the track?
EW: Aw, thank you so much. I wrote “Hurt By You” about my relationship when it was still at its early stages. I found myself holding back quite a lot and playing out the worst-case-scenarios of what could happen to us. It was restricting me from falling in love. This song is a sort of reminder to myself to not let those thoughts hold me back. Making yourself vulnerable can be amazing and essential to feeling love if it’s with the right person.
LM: And rumor has it that the video was shot in a special location while on tour. Could you tell us a bit about the experience and making the video?
EW: Haha yes – crazy story actually. We played a show in Memphis and my friend Blythe Thomas, who is a photographer and videographer, happened to be with me that day to shoot the show. During the day we took a tour of Sun Studios – where Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash and a several others got their start. Blythe said, sort of joking, that it would be a perfect location for the “Hurt By You” video so we went up to the owner behind the counter and asked him if there was any way we could come back at midnight, after the show, and shoot a video. MUCH to our surprise, he just said “yes”, and we went back late that night and recorded. It was a wild experience – they actually let me play the piano and sing into the mike that so many legendary artists used.
LM: There is this term out there “responsible songwriting”. Can you tell us a little bit about what that means?
EW: Music is a format that spreads globally. You could write a song that plays for millions of people in every corner of the planet, and I personally think that you have to keep that in mind when you’re writing a song. Not to say that you have to be heady or preachy all the time, there’s a time and a place, but I am shocked sometimes at how desensitized we are, and how we don’t even flinch when incredibly offensive and demeaning things are played on the radio – particularly towards women.
LM: And speaking of songwriter, you credited with writing a huge song, “Don’t Let Me Down”. What was it like being a part of the Grammy Awards and actually winning?
EW: I can’t even put that feeling into words because it was completely unexpected and ridiculous. That’s the sort of thing you dream about and have had it happen, and sharing it with friends, was just life changing. I cried so many tears – I still can’t believe it!
LM: Obviously you got work with The Chainsmokers on numerous projects, but you also have worked with other artists. How do you approach co-writing songs with other people versus writing solo and for yourself?
EW: At the end of the day, the processes are quite similar. Whether I’m writing for myself or with someone else, I’m really only interested in writing about the truth. My sessions typically begin with a long conversation – I want to make people comfortable enough to open up to me so that the song is meaningful to them. One, because there is something very rewarding in helping someone get their story out, but two, I believe that if you write about something honest and true, you will be touching on something that other people have felt, and that, to me, is the beauty of music. Connecting – making people feel less alone.
LM: Now that you recently finished up your tour with The Chainsmokers, what is next for you in 2017? Can you tell us about your current single, “Something To Hold On To”?
EW: Yes! My song “Something to Hold on To” is a true story I wrote one night after my boyfriend went outside to smoke a cigarette. There is something inexplicably sad and heartbreaking about watching someone you love harm themselves, and that’s what I tried to portray in this song. The video is out now, followed by at least one more single and then an album. Plus, I’m continuing to write with artists so I’ve got some fun things I’ve worked on coming out soon as well!
LM: What do you want fans to take away from this track?
EW: Whether it’s cigarettes or another vice, I hope that people will be able to relate to this feeling. Losing someone you love can feel a whole lot like losing a part of yourself, and I hope that this song can provide comfort to anyone experiencing similar things and, like I said before, feel less alone. Also, maybe this is presumptuous, but it would be really dope if this song got more people to stop smoking cigarettes!
LM: Here’s hoping! Thank you again for taking the time to chat with us! We really appreciate it!
EW: My pleasure, thank you!
Do not forget to pick up the new single, “Something To Hold On To” by Emily Warren on iTunes now. And check out the video for the song below!