Emily’s second album ‘A Different Life’ was her follow up to the well-received ‘A Day Like Today’. It is an album full of variety.
There are several of Emily’s own songs such as ‘Always A Smile’, written for her Polish grandmother, and ‘Edward of Morton’, a tragic tale from Emily’s native Dumfriesshire. Emily has also re-worked several traditional songs and given a new feel to many by giving the words melodies of her own. Amongst the songs are three instrumental sets, a slow air written by Emily and two up beat sets largely consisting of tunes penned by Emily’s regular fiddle player, Jamie McClennan.
Though very much a song based album Emily’s accordion and piano feature throughout on both tune sets and songs. With so many musicians performing many of the tracks inevitably have a ‘big’ sound but the album is well balanced with sparser tracks such as ‘The Lowlands of Holland’ and Emily’s unaccompanied singing on ‘Far O’er the Forth’.
In total there are ten musicians featured on the album. Complimenting Emily’s vocals are Brian Finnegan on flute and whistles and Jamie McClennan on fiddle. Steve Byrne (Guitar/Bouzouki/Cittern), Duncan Lyall (Double Bass), Martin O Neill (Bodhran) and Paul Jennings (Percussion) provide a rhythmic backbone to many of the tracks. Sarah Murray (Cello), Jonna Inge (Viola) and Hamish Napier on backing vocals give a beautiful touch to ‘Strong Winds For Autumn’ in particular.