A Quarantined Mini Interview with Emily Wolfe

Emily Wolfe Photo by Marc Abernathy

From her Walmart Harmony acoustic guitar, the Slammer Hammer Stratocaster, getting into Gibson Guitars, and even her Sheraton Epiphone, Emily Wolfe is an artist who strives to add something good to everyone’s life.

Wolfe is a growing star who started playing guitar at the age of 5. The Austin native singer and guitarist launched her solo career back in 2012. Starting with her debut EP Roulette in 2014, she has toured with The Toadies, Heart, The Pretenders, and Black Pistol Fire. She’s genuinely invested in anything that evokes creativity, including pedals, tape machines, microphones, and even lighting. I was fortunate to exchange emails with her during this COVD-19 pandemic. It’s time for her to take the stage! Really quick, let's take a trip down memory lane. What was your very first concert experience like as an attendee? Then, how did it feel to be on stage, on the opposite end as an artist? My first concert as an attendee was at the Stubb's Amphitheater in Austin, where I live. My sister took me to see a band called The Format, which is no longer in existence, unfortunately.  I was 14 and never been to a concert before but loved the energy and the crowd cheering. The feeling I got when the band walked out on stage was electric. I knew I wanted to be up there performing too but didn't know how I could get there. It's crazy that what separates the crowd from the performer physically is mere feet, but what it takes to get on stage is an entire career of hard work. I played the same stage a few years ago, opening for The Toadies, and it was an incredible feeling. After years of working on getting to that point, I finally made it to that stage. It was rewarding, scary, and amazing. The world is full of questions about quarantine and shelter-in-place. What have your days been like? Are you creating new music or listening to things that inspire you? I've been guitar-teching at a music shop, so four days out of the week, my days are filled with restringing and setting up guitars, unboxing new ones, and checking recording equipment. Besides that, I've been writing a lot and finishing songs I never had the time to finish. As much as quarantine has taken away from music, it's also allowed me to focus on other aspects of it. I was focused on touring for the past year, but now I've finally got the time to slow down and write. I do miss touring more than anything, though. You recently posted on your Instagram about how special touring the country is to you—it's a part of you. Who have been some of your favorite bands/artists to tour with and why? My favorite band to tour with is Black Pistol Fire. Those guys are good friends of mine and are always super supportive of openers. The last tour I did with them, Kevin, the lead guy, had me come up and take solos during some of their tunes, and they're all-around great guys. They're like brothers to me. They're also really inspiring to watch. Kevin's energy on stage is so wild and makes me want to go wild too. It's fun to learn tricks by watching other artists who inspire me. Do you have any favorite cities in the US that seem to show genuine care and passion when you perform? The Midwest always seems to hear that, and I was curious if that trend was true from your experience. My favorite cities to perform in are Baltimore and Chicago. The people of Baltimore are rowdy as hell, which makes for a killer show experience for everyone. Chicago is amazing too—I love the city and the people there always show up, and support.
If you're on a mission for different music you haven't heard before, check out Emily Wolfe. While you may not be able to watch her live, you can listen to her incredible licks and passion. Rock on.
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Michael Kocourek

Michael Kocourek is a Berwyn native, now living on the north side. He is a marketing professional, but beyond the corporate world, his passion involves sharing live concert experiences with the masses. If he isn’t curating a playlist or sharing a new song, he’s likely eating at a Chicago restaurant or cooking.