Quickly emerging Texas singer/songwriter Vincent Neil Emerson will be releasing his new, self-titled album produced by Rodney Crowell on June 25th via La Honda Records. It’s the same label home of Colter Wall distributed by Thirty Tigers. The new title looks to pick up where Vincent’s debut record Fried Chicken & Evil Women left off, which was introducing Emerson as one of the premier storytellers in the emerging class of performers.
“If he grows on the public the way he’s grown on me, it’s possible young Vincent will plant the flag of his [songwriting] forebears firmly in the consciousness of a whole new generation,” Rodney Crowell says. Pretty resounding praise for sure.
From Fort Worth, Vincent Neil Emerson is familiar to quite a few after opening for Colter Wall, Charley Crockett, the Turnpike Troubadours, American Aquarium, and other bigger names over the last few of years. Charley Crockett recorded Emerson’s “7 Come 11” on his album The Valley. But its really been Vincent’s partnership with Colter Wall that’s put him in front of many people, including releasing a duet with Colter in 2020 called “Roadrunner.”
“It took a guy from Canada bringing me on tour for people to actually start paying attention,” says Emerson. “Before that it was a grind like anything else, just trying to make a living.”
Ahead of the new album Emerson has released the deeply-emotional song “Learnin’ To Drown” about his father’s suicide (listen below). “I’ve been trying to write a song about my father’s passing for a while,” he says. “I was just having a hard time processing that emotionally. Before I was always trying to find a way to kind of dance around it and not really give too much away. But there’s no beating around the bush here.”
Raised in Van Zandt County in East Texas by a single mother of part Native American Choctaw-Apache descent, Vincent left home at 16, working odd jobs as he traveled around, eventually taking up guitar. His Native American ancestry comes into play in the song “The Ballad of the Choctaw-Apache” on the new album.
Though some may gravitate to Vincent Neil Emerson from his smooth voice or country sound, it’s his songwriting that is really the centerpiece of his music—a sentiment producer Rodney Crowell shared. “Rodney is a hero of mine,” says Emerson. “He wanted to make something that serves the songs, as opposed to making a record trying to put focus on production or the playing. It was an honor to work with him.”
Emerson was also was a beneficiary of a big shout out by Aquaman actor Jason Momoa while on tour with Colter Wall and Ian Noe when they were all playing in Vancouver.