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Medium Exclusive First Listen

Medium Exclusive First Listen: Emily Daniels “Ex on the Beach”

Nashville native Emily Daniels has the charm of the girl next door, fashion sense of a personal stylist, and the determination of an entrepreneur. Her music is as head-turning as her signature red outfits.

Read you wrote “Ex on the Beach” with David Evans and Sarah Jones shortly after a breakup and just weeks before you anticipated seeing the same ex. Kind of loved how you drank screwdrivers while writing … how did you decide to turn what could have been another sad song into an upbeat summer tune?

I came up with the title “Ex on the Beach” the night before our write, so I brought it up that morning. I don’t actually remember the exact details now, but we talked about the ways it could be written and decided keeping it upbeat and fun felt the most natural and relatable to my own situation.

After watching your “Making A Cocktail Together” Instagram posts, Wells Adams watch out! What would your ‘elevator speech’ be for the bartender position on“Bachelor in Paradise”?

Truth be told, I’d probably be more of a mom on that show than a bartender by making sure people were staying hydrated and trying to stop the drama, so I don’t think they’d want to hire me. Don’t worry, Wells, I’m not coming after your job anytime soon!

Need something to go with all those drinks, will you be making a taco series next?

Oooh, I do love tacos (and so does my roommate), so who knows? Anything’s possible!

Loved the behind the scenes for your single’s photo shoot. Seriously, putting together all the details is what really helps it connect with fans. Do you work with your photographer before the shoot to plan things out?

Yes! I love this question! My photographer, Mallory Holcomb of Huckleberry Creative Co., and I like to use a shared Pinterest board for inspiration and to brainstorm before shoots. We talk about concepts weeks before and then talk through the details leading up to the shoot. She and my manager Shaina Russo actually jumped in to help finish making the cocktail for the “Ex on the Beach” shoot when my bartending skills weren’t up to par! I’m very thankful for Mallory — not only does she take remarkable photos, but she works to bring visions to life and the end result always exceeds my expectations!

‘Five O’Clock Friday’. The latest, the cover of “Knee Deep” by Zac Brown Band feat. Jimmy Buffett, sounds so good. How do you put these video ‘harmonies’ together?

Thank you so much! It’s actually more of an involved process than I’d previously realized, and I’ve figured it out through trial and error during quarantine (the first week’s video probably took me 6–8 hours to figure out). I have to record each part separately and sync them using apps like iMovie, Splice, and PicStitch! I’ll try to do a tutorial on it one day!

Pre-saving the new song. What role does it play, especially at a time artists aren’t able to get out to promote their music?

Pre-saving music is so important, especially for independent artists. When people do this, it lets streaming services like Spotify know that people want to hear it and increases the likelihood for songs to be put on Spotify algorithmic and curated playlists. It also automatically adds the song to users’ music, so they’re more likely to listen to it once it’s released because it’s already waiting for them in their library.

How has social media, including online shows, helped you stay connected with fans and other artists?

Livestream shows have made it possible to connect with fans during quarantine in a way that wouldn’t have been possible several years ago. We’re still able to sing and chat like we would on stages, and I’m very grateful for that, but I will say, in person shows just can’t be beat. I think I can speak for all musicians when I say that we can’t wait until it’s safe to play shows in person for y’all again.

How will you be virtually celebrating the new single besides the Insta & Facebook Lives for the release party?

The release show is my main focus right now, but I’ve got some things up my sleeve for afterward. Until then, keep on making drinks with me on IGTV and stay tuned for what’s next!

Quarantine baking — besides banana bread, which other comfort foods have you been making?

I’ve been cooking and baking a LOT during quarantine. Some of my favorites lately have been buttermilk biscuits from my friend Anna Watson Carl’s The Yellow Table cookbook, oatmeal peanut butter protein balls, poppyseed chicken casserole, and French dip sandwiches. I save all of my favorite recipes on my Pinterest board too.

Saw your post from your trip to Greece. What will be the next stamp in your passport once quarantine is over?

I don’t have any trips planned at the moment, but I’ve been longing to go to the beach since being cooped up in the house for so long! I’d take a vacation anywhere tropical or even to 30-A or LA once it’s safe to do so!

‘Quarantine Care Package’ contest. What has cheered you up while staying at home?

I’ve really enjoyed the extra time to FaceTime my niece and friends across the country. It’s easier to get in touch with people now that the fast pace of life has been forced to slow down. I now know just how much I needed a break.

I’ve found joy in little things these days like tanning on a blanket in my backyard while drinking a cold Diet Coke or taking a drive down random country roads in Leiper’s Fork with the GPS off and the radio up.

Being a Nashville native, seeing the city rebound from a tornado to going into quarantine. What positives do you see for the city as it begins reopening?

One thing that I’ve seen time and time again is the strength of Nashville. We have been through a lot this year, but we will get through it together. I’ve seen the kindness of strangers coming together for the greater good through both the tornado relief efforts and quarantine. People have gone out of their way to help neighbors pick up groceries, clear debris, and countless other small acts that add up to make Nashville the city it is — one I’m proud to call home.

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