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"If you told me, when I was 15, that this was going to happen, I would've never believed it. It's been totally surreal, especially the last year or so," Emily Warren told us in our latest episode of The Writer's Block. Although she started out as a songwriter, labeling her as just that would be a bit of an understatement. Much like Sia or Kesha, Warren is also a big behind-the-scenes secret who not only sings, but writes for other artists. She has penned some of today's biggest pop hits for The Chainsmokers, Lost Kings, and Frenship. You know "Capsize," that enormous hit with almost 400 million streams on Spotify? Yeah, that's Emily Warren.

Warren has been naturally working at this since fifth grade. Writing and singing isn't something she necessarily set out for, it's just something she has always done. Being from New York, she studied music at NYU, which helped shape her as a writer. "We had a lot of classes in production and engineering. You're at a huge advantage as a writer if you can explain to the producer or vocal engineer exactly what you want fixed instead of just speaking in abstract terms." When it comes to trying to make it as a songwriter in the huge city that is New York, Warren doesn't let it phase her. "I've written seven or eight hundred songs and a handful of them have gotten cut; So you could view it as a challenge, or to me, it's just kind of like I've put in the work and I enjoy being in the studio; So it's just practicing the craft."

Warren also performed three lovely stripped down songs for us during her stay at Baeble HQ, "Don't Let Me Down," "Phone Down," and "Hurt By You." Well, they sounded lovely on the surface, but when you dive into the lyrical content, they all cut pretty deep. Like in the brutally honest "Phone Down," when Warren sings "What could be so goddamn important, that it can't wait until the morning? / You got me right here with my clothes off now / Why don't you put that fucking phone down?"


Transcript

penned hits for The Chainsmokers, Lost Kings, and Frenship.
On this episode of The Writer's Block, we invited her to swing by our place to discuss both her career in writing behind the scenes and performing on stage.
Emily also treated us to an exclusive acoustic performance in our studio.
Hi, my name's Kirsten and I'm the managing editor at Baeble.
When I'm not writing about music, I'm making my own music in New York City.
Baeble covers a lot of great artists.
I love to take the opportunity to pick their brains about gear, song writing, and more.
So join me as we talk artist-to-artist right here on The Writer's Block.
I love your rings, by the way.
I was looking at them.
- Is it hard to play guitar with this? - It was actually whacking the guitar a couple of times and making crazy sounds, but worth it.
- Worth it.
Totally.
- Just film this.
- So what brings you to New York? - I'm actually from New York, and I'm also on tour with The Chainsmokers, and we're here for the week.
We have a couple shows in town on Friday and Saturday, and then the tour is over.
- Sorry, you might get this question a lot, but working with The Chainsmokers, what was that like? - They are the best.
I mean, they're seriously some of my best friends.
Writing with them is so cool because they're super progressive in the way they think about what they want to write about, and obviously they have a good sense of what people like.
And, I've just learned a lot from them.
And, being on tour with them, I'm in their show.
And the last couple of months has just been amazing.
They're the best dudes.
- Do you have any, like, fun anecdotes from the tour so far? - Yeah, actually it was Alex's birthday, and we all went into a secret green room that we were told about.
And there was unlimited alcohol in there, and we were all drinking.
And, the tour, seriously, like, I think it's, like, a hundred dudes and three girls.
I'm one of three girls, that's just the ratio.
And because it was a bunch of dudes, they all decided to start wrestling because that's what you do when there's that much testosterone in the room.
And I'm pretty sure I've never gone to a party and started wrestling everyone, but they started wrestling and Alex fell and broke his rib.
So he's been performing for the rest of the tour with a broken rib.
- Oh, man, no.
- Yeah, but no one would know.
He's still doing his thing.
I guess that's not funny.
It's kind of sad.
Crashing, hit a wall Right now I need a miracle
Hurry up now, I need a miracle
Stranded, reaching out
I call your name but you're not around
I say your name but you're not around
I need you, I need you, I need you right now
Yeah, I need you right now
So don't let me, don't let me don't let me down
I think I'm losing my mind now
It's in my head, darling I hope
That you'll be here, when I need you the most
So don't let me, don't let me
Don't let me down Don't let me down
Don't let me down
Don't let me down, down, down
We're running out of time
I really thought you were on my side
But now there's nobody by my side
I need you, I need you I need you right now
Yeah, I need you right now
So don't let me, don't let me Don't let me down
I think I'm losing my mind now
It's in my head, darling I hope
That you'll be here, when I need you the most
So don't let me, don't let me Don't let me down
Don't let me down Don't let me down
Don't let me down, down, down
Oh, I think I'm losing my mind now, yeah
I think I'm losing my mind now
I need you, I need you, I need you right now
Yeah, I need you right now
So don't let me, don't let me, don't let me down
I think I'm losing my mind now
It's in my head, darling I hope
That you'll be here, when I need you the most
So don't let me, don't let me, Don't let me down
Don't let me down
Don't let me down, no, oh
Don't let me down, down, down
- When was the moment that you decided that you wanted to do music for a living? - It was super organic.
I mean, I don't think I ever had the thought, like, "Oh, I want to take this seriously.
" I was writing since I was in 5th grade and then ended up recording some stuff.
Before I got into high school, I then started a band.
And so everything just kind of was organically moving forward, which has made it all the more fun because it's never really felt like a job.
It's just what I love to do.
- And was there ever a moment where you kind of thought maybe this can't happen? Like, did you ever lose hope or lose sight? - Not really.
I don't know what else I would do.
I love it so much, so it's a no-brainer for me.
- So, is it true that you went to NYU for music? - It is true.
- Has that shaped you a lot as a songwriter? - Yeah, for sure.
I think we had a lot of classes in production, and engineering and stuff, which you're at a huge advantage as a writer if you can explain to the producer, the vocal engineer, exactly what you want fixed instead of just speaking in abstract terms, so I learned a lot from that.
And then the other kids that were on the program were just amazing and a lot of us, a lot of people are coming out of there now and working together.
And it's really a great program.
- When you were first starting out, did you experience any challenges? I know New York is kind of tough.
- Yeah.
I mean, there's always challenges and I think, especially when you're in the writing game... I have written, like, 700, 800 songs, and a handful of them have gotten cut.
So, you could view it as a challenge, or, to me, it's just kind of like I've put in the work and I enjoy being in the studio so it's not really a failure if it doesn't get cut.
It's just practice, practicing the craft.
So this next song is a song I wrote that started off as a ballad.
It was a true situation that happened to me where I was with a guy, and in a very inappropriate moment, he took his phone out and I was like, "This sucks, but also, this is a great idea for a song.
" And, we wrote it as a ballad and then it got sent to the Lost Kings, and they ended up putting out a version that I'm singing.
But, this song is called Phone Down and here's the more original, the stripped-down version.
This room's so quiet I can hear the sound of silence
Right here in your arms And I'm falling asleep
to your heartbeat
It's just you and I
Shadows in the passing headlights
And I think for a moment You won't let go of me
And suddenly that bright blue is glowing in this dark room
You turn away like I'm not here at all
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
Darling, so we could be alone now
Can't you just be here when the lights go out?
Why don't you ever put that phone down?
What could be so goddamn important?
That it can't wait until the morning?
You got me right here with my clothes off now
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
And the worst thing you do
Is when I reach out my hand to touch you
Are you hiding something from me?
'Cause you move when I get close
But oh, I hate that bright blue It's glowing in this dark room
You turn away like I'm not here at all
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
Darling, so we could be alone now
Can't you just be here when the lights go out?
Why don't you ever put that phone down?
What could be so goddamn important?
That it can't wait until the morning?
You got me right here with my clothes off now
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
You're killing the moment The window is closing
It's only supposed to be two of us
Put that phone down Please, put that phone down
Now, I'm feeling awkward It's actually torture
You're making a fool of the both of us
Put that phone down Please, put that phone down
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
Darling, so we could be alone now
Can't you just be here when the lights go out?
And just put that phone down?
What could be so goddamn important?
That it can't wait until the morning?
You got me right here with my clothes off now
Why don't you put that fucking phone down?
- You just played a few great songs for us.
How do you kind of feel to play them stripped-down since they're so electronic originally? - I think you can kind of tell if the song is an actual song if you play it just on guitar or just on piano.
So, most of the songs are written actually just on an instrument, because I feel like if it's good there, then it will translate.
- And you mentioned before you played your song, Phone Down, that it was based off of a true story about a guy who took out his phone at an inappropriate moment.
Yeah, why don't you put fucking phone down?
Darling, so we could be alone now
Do you write songs about real moments like that all the time? - Yes.
I think if you write about true things, there's a good chance you're talking about something else, something that someone else has gone through, so I always write about real things that have happened.
And I think it's actually much easier to come up with song ideas if you're talking about the truth.
Yeah, eh, oh, oh, oh, oh
I see this scene where you walk down the hallway
I try to stop you, but you don't wait
It's exactly what I was afraid of, you don't love me anymore
And I know the part where you say you're unfaithful
Sittin' at the kitchen table In that moment in-between
I love and fuckin' hate you I'm not sure, I'm not sure
Why that isn't stopping me
So come sweep me off my feet
'Cause I wanna give, give you all that I got
And I wanna believe we'll defy all the odds
And I hope you don't hurt me
But oh, if you do,
It would be worth getting hurt by you
Everybody's got their own opinion
And I hate it, but admit it
It's naive to think that you and I are somehow different from anyone else
And I give myself, but only giving fractions
This is not what I imagined
Gotta put myself out on the line and see what happens before I give up
But that isn't stopping me, oh
So come sweep me off my feet
'Cause I wanna give, give you all that I got
And I wanna believe we'll defy all the odds
And I hope you don't hurt me
But oh, if you do
It would be worth getting hurt by you
Oh, I could wonder Will our love survive?
Oh, oh, but what a waste of time
Ah, ah, ah, oh, oh, oh, oh
I wanna give, give you all that I got
And I wanna believe we'll defy all the odds
And I hope you don't hurt me
But oh, if you do
It would be worth getting hurt by you, oh, oh
Getting hurt by, by you, oh, oh
By you, oh, oh
It would be worth getting hurt by you
- Like you said, you're on tour with The Chainsmokers who you've collaborated with.
You've also collaborated with so many other artists like Frenship.
Oh, oh, oh, yeah I'm fine
Drop tears in the morning Give in to the lonely
- What's it kind of like to be a part of such huge pop songs today? - It's nuts.
I think, like, if you had told me when I was 15 that this was going to happen, I would never have believed it.
It's been totally surreal especially the last year or so with Capsize and Don't Let Me Down, and it's the best feeling in the world.
I've been getting really good feedback, like, through fans and stuff on Instagram and stuff like that, and saying that the songs are helping them.
And that's really the best feeling in the world.
- And what can we expect to see next? Are we going to get an album or an EP? - Yeah, definitely.
So, I've got one or two more songs coming out by themselves.
The next one should be in a few weeks, and then an album after that.
- Yes.
- Yeah.
- And then you're finishing this tour with Chainsmokers? - This week is the last week.
- Wow, it's exciting.
- It's so sad.
I don't want it to end.
I've had the best time.
Hey, this is Emily Warren, and you're watching Baeble Music.
Getting hurt by, By you, oh, oh
By you, oh, oh
Oh, it would be worth getting hurt by you

Artist Bio

Emily Warren Schwartz (born August 25, 1992), also known simply as Emily Warren, is an American singer and Grammy-winning, multi-platinum songwriter signed to Dr. Luke's label Prescription Songs. She is best known for the songs she has written for several high-profile pop artists, including The Chainsmokers, Frenship, Sean Paul, Melanie Martinez, and Shawn Mendes.

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Emily Warren

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