Emily Bear distills exquisite lead vocals, tight song-craft, expansive orchestration, mind-blowing piano performance, and cinematic scope into emotionally charged pop. Moreover, she does almost everything herself, drawing on virtuosic talents, film and television composition experience, and production acumen. The craziest thing is the songstress doesn’t even reach legal voting age until the summer of 2019…
Emily has been composing since she was three years old. By the time she was four, her music was being published and distributed by Hal Leonard and she currently has five original sheet music songbooks distributed worldwide. At just five-years-old, she made history with her professional debut as “the youngest performer to play the Ravinia Festival” before going on to become a regular on Ellen a year later. She would grace hallowed stages everywhere from Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and The Hollywood Bowl to Montreux Jazz Festival, Blue Note Tokyo and New York, performing compositions of her own and classics alongside orchestras and ensembles. Among numerous accolades and honors, she became “the youngest person to win the Morton Gould Young Composer Award”, won two Herb Alpert Young Jazz Composers Awards, received the 2018 Abe Olman Scholarship at the Songwriter Hall of Fame Awards, and garnered the 2018 Order of Lincoln Award from her home state of Illinois—an honor also bestowed upon First Lady and Senator Hillary Clinton, Steven Chen (YouTube founder), Mellody Hobson (Dreamworks), and more.
Along the way, she played in nearly every corner of the globe. Enchanting a bevy of legends and music royalty, she attracted none other than her idol and mentor Quincy Jones to produce her jazz debut, Diversity, in 2013.
“She’s the most delightful human being I’ve ever met in my life”, Quincy says. “I am astounded and inspired by the enormous talent that Emily embodies. She is the complete 360-degree package, and there are no limits to the musical heights she can reach. Emily has a unique ability to seamlessly transition from classical to jazz, from be-bop to bossa nova, from blues and classical to pop; her potential is truly endless. I have been in the business for over 70 years now, and I have yet to see another artist like her.”
Returning across the sea In 2017, she starred “Night of The Proms,” a 25-city sold-out Stadium Tour in Europe. In addition to performing, she wrote and arranged all the music for a 70-piece orchestra, 30-voice choir, and rock band. As part of the production, she floated over the audience on a flying platform—while playing the piano, no less. A documentary about Emily notably received an EMMY® and has generated over 40 million views. She has raised millions for various charities from her performances and events.
Throughout 2018 and 2019, Emily shone on stage, on-screen, and in the studio. She performed Rhapsody In Blue with a hundred piece symphony enthralling more than19,000 people at Millennium Park in Chicago on Independence Day. She performed at the Hollywood Bowl twice and composed the opening and end titles to Warner Brothers’ feature film, Nancy Drew and the Hidden Staircase. Additionally, she was the featured pianist on renowned composer Mark Isham’s emotional score for the Universal film, A Dog’s Journey and it’s soundtrack. She also returned to the Hollywood Bowl where she composed and performed an original score for a Disney classic animated film, premiering it with a 70 piece symphony.
All of this set the stage for her formal debut as an original pop songwriter and vocalist.
“Film scoring, orchestral music, and piano will always be a part of me. Combining jazz, pop, and classical is natural. My goal is to bring all of these influences into a mainstream sound and change how we classify styles altogether. I like to think of it as ‘declassifying music’.” Emily demonstrates this with her recent single release, “Dancin”, that she debuted with her band on the Ellen Degeneres Show.
Her first single, “‘I’m Not Alone’, is really special to her. “Although I wrote it to a very specific event in my life, the lyrics can be applied to so many different situations. Even when you are in the most pain, know that you are not alone.”
No matter what Emily does—whether conducting an orchestra, composing for a film, playing jazz or performing a pop song—she makes a lasting connection.
“I write music, I create, I perform – and I tell stories. The basis of all my music is emotion. That’s the most important thing to me – using my music to make people feel.”