Haines performing live with her band Metric at Coachella (2008)
25 January 1974 |
New Delhi, India
|Origin||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Genres||Indie rock, New Wave|
|Instruments||Vocals, keyboards, piano, guitar, tambourine, harmonica|
|Labels||Metric Music International
Drowned in Sound Recordings
|Associated acts||Metric, Broken Social Scene|
|Sequential Circuits Pro-One|
Emily Haines (born 25 January 1974 in New Delhi, India) is a Canadian indie rock singer-songwriter. She is the lead singer, keyboardist and co-songwriter of the band Metric and a member of Broken Social Scene. As a solo artist, she has performed under her own name and under the moniker Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton. Haines possesses a soprano vocal range.
Life and career 
Born in New Delhi, India and raised in Cache Bay, Ontario, Emily Haines grew up as a dual citizen of Canada and United States, the latter after her American-born parents. She is the daughter of Canadian poet Paul Haines. Her sister is the Canadian television journalist Avery Haines and her brother is Tim Haines, owner of Bluestreak Records in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada.
After settling in Peterborough at the age of three, she grew up in a house rich with experimental art and musical expression. Paul would often make cassettes of rare and eclectic music for his daughter to listen to and her early influences included Carla Bley, Robert Wyatt, and later PJ Harvey. By her teens she followed her parents' footsteps by attending the Etobicoke School of the Arts (ESA) to study drama. There she met Amy Millan and Kevin Drew, with whom she would later collaborate in [Broken Social Scene]. Haines and Millan briefly formed their first band around 1990 while at ESA. Emily also briefly dated Kevin Drew.
Haines attended the University of British Columbia in Vancouver in 1992–1993, and Concordia University in Montreal in 1995–1996. She distributed in 1996 an early album titled Cut in Half and Also Double with a limited number of copies, that included songs written and recorded during her student years.
Emily Haines met James Shaw in Toronto in 1997, and the two of them began dating and making music. Initially, the duo's name was Mainstream. After releasing an EP titled Mainstream EP, they changed the band's name to Metric, after a sound that was programmed by Shaw on his keyboard in 1997 or 1998. In 2001, Winstead and Scott-Key joined them.
Metric has released five studio albums so far: Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? in 2003, Live It Out in 2005, Grow Up and Blow Away in 2007 (but recorded in 2001), Fantasies in 2009, and Synthetica in 2012.
During the years, Haines has also contributed vocals or backing vocals to songs by Broken Social Scene, Jason Collett, Stars, Delerium, K-Os, KC Accidental, MSTRKRFT, The Stills, Tiësto, The Crystal Method and Todor Kobakov.
In 2004, Metric appeared in the 2004 drama film Clean. Emily Haines and the rest of the band, appearing as themselves, performed their song "Dead Disco" and then went backstage for a small speaking role. "Dead Disco" also featured on Clean Original Soundtrack.
In 2006, she released the studio album Knives Don't Have Your Back under the moniker Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton. The songs "Our Hell" and "Doctor Blind" were issued as singles and had music videos produced. Knives Don't Have Your Back was followed in 2007 by the EP What Is Free to a Good Home?. These recordings were inspired by the death of her father.
|“||I found myself with a body of work that was dealing with a whole whack of themes that really weren’t suited to Metric. It would’ve been very strange to bring those songs to a band. The way Metric songs usually develop is that I write something on the piano that sounds a lot like those songs.||”|
—Emily Haines, 
Her solo work is typically more mellow and piano-based than her work with Metric. She occasionally plays a limited number of solo shows, often with Amy Millan as the opening act.
Synthetica, the fifth studio album from Metric, was released on 12 June 2012. According to Haines, Synthetica is "about forcing yourself to confront what you see in the mirror when you finally stand still long enough to catch a reflection. Synthetica is about being able to identify the original in a long line of reproductions. It's about what is real vs what is artificial." The album contains a collaboration with Lou Reed on the song "The Wanderlust".
When performing live with her band Metric, Emily Haines sings and plays two synthesizers. Her primary synthesizer is a Sequential Circuits Pro-One, which she has played since the band's early years. As secondary synthesizer, she played a Kawai MP9000 in Metric's early years, which was replaced by E-mu PK-6 Proteus Keys from 2003 to 2011, and followed by Clavia Nord Wave since 2012.
During some Metric live songs, Haines also plays a tambourine or an electric guitar. During Metric acoustic appearances, Haines sings and sometimes plays piano or harmonica, while her band mate James Shaw plays the acoustic guitar.
When performing live as Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton, she sings and plays a piano.
Emily Haines 
- Cut in Half and Also Double (1996)
Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton 
- Knives Don't Have Your Back (2006, #28 in Canada)
- What Is Free to a Good Home? (2007)
- "Doctor Blind"
- "Our Hell"
- "Doctor Blind"
- "Our Hell"
- Old World Underground, Where Are You Now? (2003)
- Live It Out (2005)
- Grow Up and Blow Away (2007)
- Fantasies (2009)
- Synthetica (2012)
The following songs are credited with Emily Haines on either lead or backing vocals:
|Artist||Song||Album and Year|
|Broken Social Scene||"Anthems for a Seventeen-Year-Old Girl"||You Forgot It in People (2002)|
|"Looks Just Like the Sun"|
|"Backyards"||Bee Hives (2004)|
|"Windsurfing Nation"||Broken Social Scene (2005)|
|"Her Disappearing Theme"||To Be You and Me EP (2005)|
|"Sentimental X's"||Forgiveness Rock Record (2010)|
|Delerium||"Stopwatch Hearts"||Chimera (2003)|
|Jason Collett||"Hangover Days"||Idols of Exile (2005)|
|k-os||"Uptown Girl"||Yes! (2009)|
|KC Accidental||"Them (Pop Song No. 3333)"||Anthems for the Could've Bin Pills (2000)|
|MSTRKRFT||"She's Good For Business"||The Looks (2006)|
|Stars||"Going, Going, Gone"||Nightsongs (2001)|
|"On Peak Hill"|
|The Stills||"Baby Blues"||Without Feathers (2006)|
|Tiësto||"Knock You Out"||Kaleidoscope (2009)|
|The Crystal Method||"Come Back Clean"||Divided by Night (2009)|
|Todor Kobakov||"Carpe Diem"||Pop Music (2009)|
|Young Artists for Haiti||"Wavin' Flag"||—|
Guest appearances 
- Cameo appearance on the k-os music video, "Man I Used to Be".
- Cameo appearance on The Stills music video for "Love and Death" playing a secretary.
- Stars in Julian Plenti's music video for the song "Games For Days".
- Stars in Jason Collett music video for the song "Fire".
- Righi, Len (9 January 2007). "Metric's Emily Haines cuts a new swath with solo disc". The Morning Call (Allentown) (PopWire). Retrieved 2007-11-25. Indicates age 32 just prior to her 4 January 2007 tour date in Montreal..
- Colville, Liz (26 September 2006). "Emily Haines & The Soft Skeleton - Review". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
- "Metric - "Breathing Underwater" Review". Nylon Mag. 15 June 2012. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
- Arnold, Ryan (2 November 2009). "Metric's latest acoustic EP 'Plug In, Plug Out' softens its usually energetic sound". Collegiate Times. Retrieved 14 January 2013.
- Shea, C. (21 November 2012). "Emily Haines: Metric Lead Singer". The Grid. Retrieved 28 December 2012.
- "Taking Measurements: An Interview with Metric - PopMatters". "I have an identity crisis which is not resolved because I'm a dual citizen. My whole family is American, and I was born in India but I was raised in Canada. But all my extended family is American, I've held an American passport and I've spent my whole adult life in between New York and LA. So I feel like an American… and I also feel like a Canadian! I wish more people were dual citizens and then I wouldn't feel like such a freak."
- Berman, Stuart. This Book Is Broken. 2009
- "Why They're Called... Metric - SPIN - Profiles - Spotlight". Retrieved 21 April 2013.
- "Metric - Music Biography, Credits and Discography : AllMusic". Retrieved 25 April 2013.
- Anthony Carew (2009-04-06). "Interview: Emily Haines of Metric". About.com. Retrieved 2013-05-17.
- "Metric Offer Peek Into Creative Process Behind 'Synthetica'". SPIN Magazine. Buzz Media. 2012-04-17. Retrieved 2013-05-17.
- Chan, Alvin. "Emily Haines – Pop Princess Sharpens her Knives". MusicOMH.com. http://www.musicomh.com/interviews/emily-haines_0607.htm. Accessed 28 July 2008.
- Sweeny, Joey. "Indie Pop Goes Twee". The Rock History Reader. Ed. Theo Cateforis New York: Routledge, 2007.
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