I was approached online recently by a couple of 19 year old musicians who had started a band up in Ontario. They asked me to give them some feedback on two of their songs they had recorded for their first album “190.” I instantly fell in love with the music. These two guys have incredible raw musical talent, and have a great future ahead of them. The band name is Emma Grace and they play a mellow style of music that reminds me of Death Cab for Cutie with the emotional lyrics and hypnotizing vocals blended with the simple yet beautiful instrumentals of a Jack Johnson song.
Below, please enjoy Emma Grace’s (Zach Crystal and Sam Sokoloff) first exclusive interview with Musicyouneed!
First of all, tell me about Zach and Sam.
I’ll write first [Zach] and then Sam will write his thing. So, I’m sure a lot of people were like myself and their parents introduced them to good music. Before I could talk I was listening to music that my dad showed me. He has thousands of CD’s and would play them in the car all the time. I actually wanted Eric Clapton to play at my second birthday. He didn’t show haha.
Sam: Not sure where to start… I started playing drums before I even really got into music and then discovered – and became obsessed with – the Beatles when I was about 12 years old. Ever since then music has more or less defined my life and I went on to teach myself how to play the guitar and piano and eventually started to write and record songs by myself at home.
How did the two of you meet and decide to form a band?
We’ve known each other for close to 15 years and we’re both only 19 years old, so a pretty long time. We’ve always shared with each other our musical interests and have been playing together for years. It was natural to start writing with each other eventually.
Why the name Emma Grace?
It’s actually my [Zach] sister’s name, no reason other than we think it sounds cool.
Where does inspiration come from for your songs?
Well we set a goal to write those 2 songs in one night each. “Wait” was written in one night and “Feel” was written in two. We set the goal to write in one night so that everything flows and we don’t have to stop and think. Also, I [Sam] tend to spend weeks to months on my own songs and they never get finished, so doing it this way will help us get a lot more finished songs.
Who writes lyrics? How do you come up with them?
I [Zach] write most of the lyrics but Sam definitely contributed. Honestly, our lyrics just flow with our music. When we come up with our vocal melodies the words come with them and we like that. It’s sort of like subconscious
What instruments/equipment do you guys play/use for recording?
We both play all the instruments used in our tracks. We mainly focus on guitar, bass, keyboard, and vocals but we do like to use a lot of percussion instruments. We record in Sam’s room using Mixcraft.
What are the goals for Emma Grace?
We want to keep enjoying the process of making music and have other people enjoy it. It’s pretty tough to constantly write music because we both go to university and have hard semesters. Once we finish up this semester in December we hope to start playing shows regularly and writing more often, until those exams come up again.
What’s one thing people should know about you?
The beginning of “Wait” was us accidentally recording ourselves talking about how we were gonna make the song. I think that’s pretty cool that in our song we talk about the making of our song hahah.
What’s next for Emma Grace?
We are going to keep writing more. Once we have enough material we will definitely release an album for our friends and whoever wants to listen to it. Once our exams finish we will start playing shows.
Be sure to check out these two tracks from Emma Grace!
Emma Grace Website
Emma Grace Facebook