EMMY Takes Shots (Many Shots) at Pop Stardom

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Courtesy of EMMY
In the middle of 2012, Emily Simonian was at a crossroads. Though she had released her first EP, Pale Green, the year before, she was already unhappy with the direction her career was headed. Her delicate, jazzy piano-laden songs were technically proficient and appealed to her personal tastes, but they were missing the extra element that would nab a wider audience. She took a year off to write and reboot, and now the Yorba Linda-born, Huntington Beach-based singer/songwriter is ready to unleash her brand of spunky pop music to the masses.

Classically trained on the piano, Simonian's influences range from classic jazz music to soul and R&B. When you look at the petite musician, you wouldn't expect to hear a voice with such a vibrant knowledge and understanding of how to fuse these genres, yet that's what she does.

After she graduated from high school, Simonian spent one year at the Berklee College of Music in Boston before returning to OC to polish her craft. In that time, she became a fixture at piano bars throughout Southern California, but deep down, she knew she could write more accessible songs than the jazzy numbers she had in her catalog.

After changing management following Pale Green and working with her longtime friend Golda McCormack, Simonian was ready to emerge from her hiatus, refreshed and excited about her new prospects. The songs she took time to dissect over the past year were finally ready to be shared with the world. But unlike her earlier material, they took a decidedly more poppy approach than the intricate piano-driven songs on her debut.

"It was just my personal taste, and I wanted to [make] something that I'd put on and listen to every day," she explains between sips of coffee at a local restaurant. "This time, I knew what type of sound I was going for and what my goals for it were."

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