EmiSunshine (from the album Diamonds available on Little Blackbird Records) (by Lee Zimmerman)
EmiSunshine could be considered a child wunderkind. She started singing with her family at age three and then embarked on a professional career at the age of nine. She’s only 17 now, but her list of accomplishments —appearances on “Today” and “American Idol” and an appearance at the Grand Ole Opry — could easily rival an artist twice her age. Her upbringing in East Tennessee has infused her influences with Bluegrass, Gospel, Blues, Rock and old-time Americana.
Naturally, there will be those who are skeptical of her success. A happy handle like “EmiSunshine” and a tender age allow room for some dubious distinction.
That said, her new album, Diamonds, is her most adventurous — and adult — effort yet. The ebullience and innocence that informed her earlier albums have given way to a knowing perspective, one that finds songs infused with optimism, sarcasm, wisdom, and introspection. The songs take on a number of controversial subjects — sexism, frustration with the record industry, loss of loved ones, determination to pursue principles, staying true to one’s essential origins, and, oddly enough, an encounter with a neighborhood cannibal.
This little girl has obviously grown up.
Nevertheless, the music is effusive, assured and richly conceived. While it retains traces of her Americana origins, it also adds a modern edge. Songs such as “No One’s Gonna Change Me”, “After You’re Gone”, “Dandelion”, “Gaslight”, “Dead Men Can’t Catcall”, “Judgement Day”, and any number of others ring and resonate in ways that are decidedly determined, shared with a drive and determination that belies her tender years. ‘Can’t you see the jewel you’re making’ she sings in the album’s title track. ‘Cut me down and you’re just shaping who I am and where I’m going…’.
That attitude more or less sums up her stance, an assertion of absolute independence that marks her maturity, as both an artist and as an individual. It’s a milestone to be sure, one that assures the fact that her future is bound to be as pertinent and prescient as her past. (By Lee Zimmerman)
For more information and purchase options, please visit the EmiSunshine website