Emerson Hart’s second solo record is still three months away from its official release date and he already has half of the songs written for his next solo record.
When you are feeling it don’t stop.
You wouldn’t ask Pete Rose to sit out a few games during his hitting streak.
You don’t ask Peyton Manning to take a few years off after a Super Bowl run.
Perhaps this is not the best time to tell Imagine Dragons to go on hiatus.
When creatively calls you not only pickup, you get out a notepad and pen.
Hart’s new record is titled, Beauty in Disrepair. It’s scheduled to be released on April 15 and is the guitarist/song writer’s most diverse and genetically groundbreaking to date.
Hart, who is now 44, is most recognized as the frontman for the band Tonic, the Grammy nominated band who became most well know for the 1997 hit “If You Could Only See” which was on the band’s debut record that sold 1.3 million copies.
In 2007, Hart released his first solo record titled Cigarettes and Gasoline which yielded a pair of songs that got radio airtime in “If You’re Gonna Leave” and “I Wish The Best For You.”
It may have taken six years for Hart to generate enough inspiration for Beauty in Disrepair but judging by the strength of the record, he’s tapped into something special.
The first single is titled, “The Best That I Can Give” is hitting radio stations now.
“I don’t think I intentionally try to be extremely diverse with each song it just kind of happened that way,” Hart said of his new sound. “Lyrically there is a thread that runs through it. I let the songs take it where it wanted to go and I didn’t try to force it or take away parts to make it work.”
Hart said he had planned on releasing the song Hurricane as the first single but changed his mind. Hurricane is about his experience with a divorce and falling in love again. It surfaces as one of the best tracks on the CD and reminds Hart of Tonic’s biggest hit.
“It’s an interesting song. For some reason I feel like it has a connection to If You Could Only See,” Hart said. “When we used to play that song live, before it came out on the radio, people were like yeah it’s an ok song. It wasn’t until radio punched it in the face that it became a huge hit and became the proverbial lighting in the bottle for us. There’s just something about Hurricane.”
The first sample of Hart’s new music came in the sound of “To Be Young” that was offered as a free download.
“I thought since Cigarettes and Gasoline was the last solo record that this song seemed to be the common thread,” Hart said. “More in the way that it was the beginning of Beauty in Disrepair, coming out of what I had gone through five years after a divorce. That for me felt like the best introduction.”
David Hodges, who has worked with Kelly Clarkson, Christina Perri and Carrie Underwood, produced the record. He also co-wrote some of the songs including The Best That I Can Give and served as second opinion.
One of the examples of Hodges’ influence came on the song “Another Life.”
Hart didn’t think the song fit on the record but Hodges fought for the song and Hart relented.“It kind of wrestled me pretty good and sometimes when things start to wrestle with you too much you have to say it’s not the right time but David fought me pretty hard on it. He said ‘don’t let this go,’” Hart said. “The song isn’t really about me, it’s about someone else who I knew that was going through a really bad divorce. No matter how much they tried to make it work, they couldn’t. Maybe things could have been different but the older we get things happen, we can’t go back there because there is no time machine.”
It proved to be a good decision because “Another Life” is a hidden gem, a song destined to be put on repeat mode.
Even though the new record is finished, for Hart, the inspiration keeps coming. He said Tonic is currently working on a new record that could be out in the summer and he’s already started putting together tracks for a third solo record that he hopes to release in the summer of 2016.
“I have five or six keepers,” Hart said. “I want to spend the chapter two part of my career being as creative as I can. I love to tour but I don’t want to stop and miss opportunities to be creative, I just don’t want to do that. If something is speaking to me and I feel like this is the record I need to make, I’ll start making the next one.”
Hart is currently on tour through March (with additional dates to follow) doing both solo dates and shows with Tonic. He said he would continue to split time between Tonic and supporting Beauty in Disrepair.
If you are wondering just what Hart’s state of mind is now, allow his music to speak for itself. One of the final tracks on the new record is titled, “All is Well.”
Say these words, let them ring out true and scream the scream, its inside of you. All is well. All is well. All is well. All is well.