Emerson Hart is the lead singer and songwriter of the alternative rock band Tonic. Tonic’s first release, Lemon Parade, was a multi-platinum success, featuring the hit songs, "Open Up Your Eyes" and "If You Could Only See" (the former written by Hart and co-writer Jeff Russo and the latter written by Hart), the latter of which became radio's most played rock song in 1997. In 1999, Tonic returned with their second album and the mainstream rock hit, "You Wanted More". In 2002, Tonic released their third LP, Head On Straight. In 2003, Tonic received two Grammy nominations - one for best Rock Performance by Duo or Group with Vocal for "Take Me As I Am", and the second for Best Rock Album. Hart also co-wrote the 2005 Ingram Hill hit, "Almost Perfect", which reached the top 25 on the Hot AC chart.
In February 2007, Hart signed a solo record deal with EMI/Manhattan Records to release his debut solo effort Cigarettes and Gasoline. It was released on July 17, 2007. Hart's first single, "If You're Gonna Leave", received airplay on American radio stations beginning in June 2007, while his second single, "I Wish the Best for You", received airplay beginning in Dec 2007.
Emerson Hart's father Jennings sang for the USO and his mother Sandra was a former television hostess. His father was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and was prescribed medicine to regulate his mental disorder, but he often resisted treatment and he and Sandra divorced in 1977. Jennings may have been off his medication at the time of his disappearance on January 21, 1980. The elder Hart has not been seen since, and in an interview Emerson addresses his "father's murder", which is the subject of the title track written and recorded by Emerson on 2007's Cigarettes and Gasoline.
Emerson married Heather McMurray on September 1, 2012 outside of their home in Nashville, Tennessee.