Emily Wells

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Emily Wells
Emily Wells headlines at the 2015 Treefort Music Fest in Boise, Idaho
Background information
Born November 20, 1981
Amarillo, Texas
Genres Folk, folk rock, folktronica, acoustic
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Violin, piano, glockenspiel, guitar, banjo, synthesizer
Years active 1999–present

Emily Wells (born November 20, 1981) is a violinist whose style "merge[s] ... hip-hop and classical".[1] She also uses many other instruments in her work, including glockenspiels, analog synthesizers, and even toy pianos and other toy instruments. During her live performances she does not use recorded loops, but rather creates her own whilst performing,[2] "using a series of live loops, sample pads and acoustic drums to make rich and haunting neo-gospel with layers of strings and vocal harmonies."[3] Her first violin was a "plastic violin from Michael's."[2]

Biography and Musical Career[edit]

Emily Wells was born in Amarillo, Texas to a French horn teacher.[4] In 1990 she moved with her family to Indianapolis, Indiana, where she lived until she began traveling in 2000.[5] While traveling, she made her "home base" primarily in New York, where she resided after an 8-year residence in Los Angeles;[6][7] she currently resides in Los Angeles.

She began playing the violin at age 4 and began releasing albums on her own. In 2000, she "took up" with Epic Records but did not actually sign with them.

She has released numerous unofficial releases, starting at age 13 with a cassette tape (producing 100 copies), but her "official" releases are Sleepyhead, Symphonies, Dirty and Mama.

Media, Seminars & Performances[edit]

On September 17, 2009, Wells was interviewed and performed "Symphony 1 in the Barrel of a Gun" on Last Call with Carson Daly.

In 2013 she contributed a song to director Park Chan-Wook's movie Stoker and toured South Korea promoting the film. [8]

On March 27, 2015, Wells gave a well-received keynote at Hackfort2 at the fourth annual Treefort Music Fest in Boise, Idaho wherein she presented her methods of composition at the intersection of art and technology and the growth of her sensibility as a musician. She included amongst her influences the music theorist John Cage, whom she paraphrased ('"Music is a purposeless play meant simply to wake us up to the life we're living...'"), the minimalist composer Philip Glass, and the hip-hop group Wu-Tang Clan. Performing with a reduced kit sans drums, she played earlier and later versions of her song "So, Sunday." [9] [10] As a headliner on the main stage on the final day of the Treefort, Wells was regarded as "undoubtedly a highlight of the festival" for her "intensely meticulous and emotional performance." [11] She had also participated in the festival's Yogafort. [12]


  • Dirtbike 1/3, Buck 65 (August 2008)
  • "Symphony #3" from Sympanies, Dwight Farrell (AKA Count Bass D)
  • Stoker soundtrack (Two songs on the soundtrack: Track number two called Becomes the Color and the last track on the album called If I Ever Had a Heart)
  • Deltron 3030Event 2 (2013) on the song "My Only Love"


Name Label Year
Midori Sour Self-Released 1999
Shadow Box 2001
Music for Geek Love 2004
Making Static 2005
Beautiful Sleepyhead & the Laughing Yaks Edub Productions 2007
The Symphonies: Dreams Memories & Parties Creative Control Records 2008
Dirty (EP) 2009
Mama Partisan Records 2012
Pillowfight (with Dan The Automator) Bulk Recordings/EMI 2013
Mama (Acoustic Recordings) Partisan Records 2013


External links[edit]