When Emily West takes the stage, it's nothing short of fireworks. Her own appreciation for artists such as K.T. Oslin, Patsy Cline and Bette Midler led her to cultivate her talent as an entertainer, not just a singer. West was born to be on stage. The energy, the excitement, the audience response- it fans the flame that drives her to perform. With a little confidence, a lot of charisma, and more than just a flash of wit, West is captivating. "I'm a live singer...performing is very emotional," she states. "They're my songs...my personality set to music."
And what a personality! A personality that flickers not just in her live performance, but also in the lyrics of her songs. West is a girl's girl. Sweet, funny, sometimes gregarious, often demure, impulsive and vulnerable, quiet and quirky. She takes ownership of her gender birthright and parlays that into lyrics that run the gamut from raw, sometimes painful emotion to top-down-sunny-day all out rockers. West isn't trying to fill a void or follow in the path of someone who has passed this way before...no, Emily West is blazing new trails with her music.
Still this former ingénue from Waterloo, Iowa, doesn't take herself too seriously. She moved to Nashville in March 2000 with the quintessential dream of being a singer. Within a month she had caught the ear of one of Nashville's most influential publishing icons, Tim Wipperman, and landed a deal with Warner-Chappell Publishing. At the time West wasn't really even sure what a publishing company did for her, but she learned that opportunities in the music business don't usually happen that quickly. Her alliance with Warner-Chappell not only provided her with an income while she educated herself on the inner-workings of the business, it also fortified her faith in her dream and positioned her with some of the most prolific songwriters in country music.
Mike Dungan at Capitol Records Nashville met West and was intrigued enough to listen. Dungan got a little more than a listening party; he got a complete performance by a consummate artist. He invited West back for an encore with his full staff, and they too were smitten by West's incredible vocals and sparkling personality. By unanimous decision West was invited to be a part of the Capitol family.
West also performs regularly in Nashville at various songwriter events and will soon add touring to her schedule.