When Emily Rowed enrolled in acting school, she knew that she would go on to spend her life on stage. Instead of appearing in plays and films, however, she now graces the stages of clubs and bars, and the songwriter is quickly carving out an infectious musical style that blends the sparkle of electronic pop with the intimacy of deeply personal lyrics.
“I spent all my time at acting school writing songs when I probably should have been working on acting,” the Vancouver-based musician admits with a laugh. “I was only ever cast in musicals, and all I cared about was making music.”
She initially gravitated towards a quiet, acoustic-centred sound, which she showcased on a self-released (and now sold-out) album in 2012. Her style took an unexpected turn in 2014, when dance superstar Tiësto selected her as the voice of his track “Say Something.” This hypnotic deep house banger placed Rowed’s soulful singing against a backdrop of thudding beats and cinematic synths, and the arrangement highlighted her voice’s tender inflections and note-perfect power.
This collaboration helped to pave the way for Rowed’s next musical step. Since signing with 604 Records, she has ventured into a new direction that utilizes a lush palette of beats and keyboards while still retaining the introspective storytelling of her folk roots. “I’m completely open and interested in experimenting,” she explains. “There are so many opportunities for sounds to get broader and for the music to get wider.”
The singer’s multifaceted approach shines on “Arrows,” an aching slow burner that begins as a hushed piano ballad and swells to become a cinematic anthem about setting aside social conventions and fully embracing freedom and exploration. “Burn” and “Electric” similarly mix gorgeous piano with restless rhythms and spacious synth textures, while “Swords” delves into dance music with its thudding, beat-driven finale. Fans can expect to be introduced to Rowed’s new sound via a series of singles, and an album is in the works.
The tunes were laid down at 604 Studios in East Vancouver, where Rowed linked up with co-writers and producers including Kevvy Mental (Fake Shark, Carly Rae Jepsen) and Colin Janz (Carly Rae Jepsen). These collaborators have helped to rein in the songwriter’s exploratory tendencies, and her free-wheeling melodies have become increasingly pop-friendly.
But even as Rowed’s arrangements continue to grow in sonic richness, her songs have remained as personal as ever. “The lyrics are still the personal stories that I’ve always written about,” she reflects. “I tend to write about 10-second moments. The sound is definitely bigger and busier, but the stories are still the same.”
It’s Rowed’s sense of vulnerability that allows her hook-filled pop songs to pack such an emotional punch. “I don’t feel like I have the right to share other people’s stories,” she says. “I really only have my own. These are mine.”
Emily Rowed shared a link. 18 Likes
Playing a little solo set then there might be a surprise or something.
@[263552787100347:274:MRG Concerts West] Presents:
w/ @[499702543398689:274:The Wild Romantics] and @[112615422088947:274:Emily Rowed]
Thursday, August 10th, 2017
at the @[481931581856759:274:Fox Cabaret] - Vancouver, BC
On sale now: http://ticketf.ly/2sZb6ME and @[9028599551:274:Red Cat Records]
Doors at 7pm - 19+
To celebrate The Matinée’s release of their new record Dancing On Your Grave, as well as the 10th year that the band has been doing their thing, we’re throwing a party at The Fox on August 10th with our pals at MRG.
It will be a special show with a few surprises and we will be hosting a pre-party in the Projection room for select guests as well as contest winners.
For the contest, share this Facebook event on as many social media platforms as possible and tag The Matinée for your chance to win a prize-pack including a pair of tickets, access to a pre-party in the Projection Room and exclusive items from the band! Winners will be selected and contacted on August 9th.
The Matinée will also be joined by Folk/Rock darlings The Wild Romantics for a night of good fun, great music and beautiful people.
The Matinee Online
Emily Rowed Online:
MRG Concerts West Online:
Emily Rowed shared MRG Concerts West's event. 4 Likes
Who: Emily Rowed Where: 604 Records, Vancouver BC When: Aug 2 2017 Genre: Alt Pop/Synth Emily Rowed had her debut EP release party for Electric Heart on the 604 Soundstage at 604 Records last Wedne… 14 Likes
Emily Rowed added 4 new photos. 4 Comments Angie Boake I so love seeing your parents there for you!!! Keep it up!!!!!Danielle Christine You look beautifulAshleigh Moore I love your pops shirt 70 Likes
Emily Rowed was live. 15 Comments Sam N. Sansalone Emily's live?? What better thing to pop up on my phone as I'm stuck at an airport (Ottawa) that happens ...Robin Yeh Hey Emily, sounding great. Thanks 604, hope to see you on Orbiiit.comMike Jackson amazing night....thank you! 27 Likes
Emily Rowed at Vancouver International Airport. 5 Comments Fazil Sultan Thats my daughter! And she says it was nice meeting you too! 😀Angie Boake You make me smile, Miss Emily!Susan Rowed Hey Emily come on over to Victoria ! 62 Likes
I chose 'Electric Heart' for this project to imply a new aliveness, an inspired, colourful, butterflies in stomach feeling.
I hope you have it
Album: Electric Heart Release Date: July 7, 2017 Download Genre: Electro-Pop Breezy, toe-tapping, anthem-worthy—Emily Rowed’s debut album, Electric Heart, checks all the summertime-hit boxes. Vanco… 1 Comments Roma Rowed Super Emily! 14 Likes