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Elmwood native coming home for holiday show

ELMWOOD --- Ever since she could talk, all Elmwood native Vicky Emerson wanted to do was play the piano.

"I begged and begged my dad until he relented," she said. "He didn't think I'd stick with it, but I did."

Now Emerson, in her fourth year as a professional musician, will return home to showcase her talents in her second annual holiday show, 7 p.m. this Sunday at the Elmwood High School Gymnasium. Tickets cost $5 and can be purchased at the door. Kids 12 and under are admitted free.

"It'll be a kid-friendly show," the 1994 Elmwood High School graduate said. She explained that, prior to last year's show, she was contacted by the Elmwood Alumni Association about doing a holiday show and jumped at the opportunity

"Last year was great and so much fun," she said. "It was a great show on a Sunday night."

Emerson classifies the music she plays as in the "Americana" genre, which she calls a combination of country, jazz, blues and pop.

And surprisingly, where "Americana" has gained its popularity has been Texas--specifically, Austin, a city Emerson has played quite frequently.

"I love that city," she said. "It's a great place for music, great musicians live there. It's a great town.

"Texas has such a blending of styles," she said. "Due to Hurricane (Katrina), a lot of musicians left New Orleans and went to Austin.

"The music there is all over the place, but that's what makes it interesting to listen to."

Matter of fact, she recently returned from a tour in Texas and has three more planned for 2007.

"It's hard to live out of a suitcase," she said, describing life on the road. "But you can meet people from all over the nation that can become your friends and family. It's a real nice feeling.

"Some of the venues become your home away from home."

With the success she had in Texas this past year, Emerson also triumphed in New York City.

This fall, Emerson sent representatives of "The Living Room," known as one of the top acoustic venues in Manhattan, a copy of her CD, "Reach." (Emerson explained that's where Norah Jones became famous.) They liked the CD so much they asked her to perform there one night in September.

The performance went so well, she explained, that buoyed by that and other factors, she'll be moving to New York the second week of February.

"It's an opportunity to pursue the career more," she said.

The move is also for personal reasons, as she'll now see more of her fiancé Joe Wallace, who lives in New York City. She also mentioned the two are getting married in April 2008 at a winery in Charlottesville, Va.

Emerson added she's three-quarters of the way done with her newest album, which will be recorded sometime this upcoming summer in St. Paul. It'll feature songs she has written.

"It's more satisfying playing your own music," she said. "It's your story and you can describe how you want to share it."

If unable to attend the holiday show in Elmwood, interested listeners can hear Emerson on the Don Shelby Show, Friday, Dec. 22, from 3-6 p.m. on WCCO Radio (830 AM on the radio dial).

Jason Schulte

Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts. 

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