We had the good fortune of connecting with Emily Moore and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emily, do you have some perspective or insight you can share with us on the question of when someone should give up versus when they should keep going?
Sometimes the decision to keep going or to give up is crystal clear. Other times, not so much. How do you know the difference? Something will always shift(s): you get a call for a great gig, you have a rewarding connection in a rehearsal, your student masters a hard-earned new skill. Or perhaps you can’t stop watching the clock on that gig and you feel relieved when that one student canceled again. In my experience, giving up is usually just recalibrating your career so it more closely matches the one you want. The beauty of freelance and of being an artist is that I always have a choice.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m a classically trained violinist who has studied music from the age of four. I deviated fairly early on into fiddle music and have continued a lifelong deviation into contemporary music and improvisation. When I play, I feel joyful and connected. Making music with my friends is one of the best things in life, hands down. I started freelancing in LA in 2004 when I moved here to attend USC. In 2009, I took a break from a rather non-traditional schooling path that included 4 schools (one of them twice, 10 years apart) and a move to Boston, and started pursuing a career in music full-time. It was absolutely not easy. Gigs were very few and far between those first few years. I started a string quartet with a friend of mine which provided us the ability to make our own work, something I’ve come to realize is very important to me. Over the years I’ve played hundreds of gigs, taught thousands of lessons, and been witness to more weddings than I care to remember. What drives me now, however, is the ability to be creative and to feel satisfied in the work I do. I love teaching because I love my students. They probably have no idea how much I think about them from week to week, seeking ways to help them along the path. I love performing and get to do that with both my string quartet and my fiddle band. I love creating work for other people and do that through my business, The Neighborhood Concert, that brings live music directly into neighborhoods for intimate gatherings. I’ve learned to keep vigilant about being willing to change and let go of things. I think it’s extremely important to keep your vision clear of what you want your career to look like and to constantly adjust. Flexibility and the ability to change is huge. I’m incredibly proud of the quality of music I offer. I feel as if I’ve been offered the gift of music and it is my intent to offer it back to the world.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Oh wow, I love LA. I think no trip here is complete without a visit to the beach, food from a taco stand, and an extremely expensive smoothie. The diversity we have here is pretty amazing and I if we’re being completely honest, I would probably base my itinerary around food: Ethiopian food, Grand Central Market, Gracias Madre, too many others to name…. I love hiking and would consider it a necessity to get to any of my favorite Westside trails like Parker Mesa or Eagle Rock. I also love anything old Hollywood and having a friend from out of town would give me the excuse to geek out on food at Musso and Frank, visit Griffith, and hike to the Hollywood sign.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I want to shoutout my parents. My mom and dad raised me to care about the world and showed me how to love what I have and who I am. They tirelessly supported me in my music studies growing up and continue to be my biggest advocates as I have developed my career as a professional musician. A few years ago, my mom gave me boxes full of sheet music from my childhood. Inside were dozens of notebooks with her handwriting, and hundred of dates with carefully transcribed instructions from the teachers and reminders for that week’s practice. They taught me to always give more than you receive, how to set and achieve goals, and above all, to never stop learning.
Samantha Hardy Photography