Just for the Record is the newest album from Manitoba-based artist Emma Peterson.
Just for the Record is an upbeat celebration of an album designed to pick you off the floor and get you on your feet and dancing. Each track is brimming with excitement and positivity – even when the tracks touch on melancholy subjects like heartache – even on the one slower song on the album – Emma’s unrelenting optimism shines through to bring a smile back to your face.
The album features a familiar pop-country accompaniment (guitar, drums, lap steel, etc.) which complements Emma’s powerful and upbeat voice. Emma’s infectious energy is not too much of a surprise when knowing her backstory. A girl from smalltown Manitoba (population 617), Emma is a largely self-taught musician whose day job is as a nurse. In fact, as Emma notes:
“When the pandemic hit, the one thing I missed the most was sharing my music with others…I spent the time off to finish my nursing career and work in the COVID unit – and also wrote songs for this new project… Every time I hit the stage, I take a deep breath and can’t help but enjoy every minute,” she said. “I’m so lucky to be where I am, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
Just for the Record, accordingly, feels like a celebration for Emma and a gift to her listeners.
The standout track on this album for me was the title track, “Just for the Record.” Here Emma boasts to a lover that even though they might have “Looked good on paper,” she thanks them for the heartache because it made for a good song she’s overjoyed to share with her audience. It’s truly a great moving-on theme song that explicitly encourages the listener to revel in singing along and turning your pain around into a joyful and constructive endevour.
ICYMI: We had a chat with Emma earlier this year via our Five Questions With segment, check it out here.
I grew up in Alberta, but spent most of my life in British Columbia – I also spent a lot of my summers in Britain as I was lucky enough to have immigrant parents with the capital to go visit our relatives. The amount of time I spent overseas makes it hard for me to say I feel fully Canadian, but it does make me feel typically Canadian as so many of us have mixed parentage. My parents defined another divide in me as I feel inexorably pulled to both science and the art; my father being a doctor and my mother being a school teacher. I studied both in university and now work on making healthcare software during the day, then write/read/draw/paint/dance in my evenings. My global wanderings, my education, and the fact that my appetite for media could be described as ‘voracious’ means my frame of reference is pretty varied. It’s hard to say that I have a favourite music genre, rather I am always seeking sounds that convey a sense earnestness an honesty.