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The debut record of Americana duo Emma Hart and her father Dave Hart. With Bryan Sutton, Byron House, Kenny Malone and more.
The debut record of Americana duo Emma Hart and her father Dave Hart. With Bryan Sutton, Byron House, Kenny Malone and more.
172 backers pledged $18,522 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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Dave & Emma Hart's debut release "Hold On", produced by Jim VanCleve

This campaign is to raise the funds we need to finish our debut record "Hold On". We have already recorded the 6 songs in Nashville thanks to support from our family. So what still needs to be done is mastering, cover artwork, duplication, a music video and publicity. These are all aspects of making a record that have been traditionally handled by record companies, but now can be done by independent artists.

Producer Jim VanCleve talks about the record:

Our Story:

Emma and I have been performing together since she was 5 years old. She was so gifted on the violin from the get-go that she was able to wow audiences, and made it a lot of fun for me. It's been a remarkable relationship to have with your child - not without its pitfalls, but truly rewarding to watch your child develop as a musician. As a composer and guitarist I have had a nice career working in TV commercials and film, and have had the opportunity to work with some world-class musicians, so I knew early on we had something special with Emma. For years people have been asking when we were going to make a record. I knew we needed to wait for Emma to have the maturity and desire to see a project this big through. And I also knew that I wanted our first record to be mostly our own songs, so I started writing. 

A little over a year ago I wrote the song "Hold On" and I knew I wanted Emma to sing it. She has always had a beautiful voice but was a reluctant singer - "I'm a violinist, not a singer," she would say. But as she got a little older she became a little less reluctant and I knew I could get her to sing on the demo. A couple of years before, when she was about 14, Emma and I had recorded one of our favorite bluegrass tunes by fiddler Jim VanCleve and the band Mountain Heart called "Devil's Courthouse". Jim was one of Emma's heroes and a huge influence on her playing. Once after a Mountain Heart show we were able to chat with him, told him about the recording, and he asked us to tag him on YouTube so he could hear it.

We became Facebook friends and he continued to follow our music for the next few years. When the “Hold On” demo was done, I sent it to Jim - he listened to it and was extremely enthusiastic. He had never heard Emma sing and in his response he wrote "Emma's voice is absolutely beautiful on this track...LOVE IT! Of course her fiddle playing goes without saying!" So this is when Jim first talked about producing our record.

After some back and forth over song selection and dates, it finally came together in August. Jim managed to line up a dream band for us - any fan of bluegrass and Americana will know these names. Bryan Sutton (guitar), Byron House (bass), Kenny Malone (drums), Jeff Taylor (keys), Aaron Ramsey (mandolin/banjo/dobro), Josh Shilling (B3 organ), and Jim VanCleve himself jumped in on vocals and to join Emma with some phenomenal fiddle on "No More We May".  Our slight intimidation of these heavyweights quickly lifted as our tracking day got started. They were so laid back and fun to work with. It was just a magical day. And the best part was that they kept talking about how much they liked the music – and I think it really shows in the results. Byron House told us it reminded him of Nickel Creek sessions. He couldn't have made us happier. 

So we are thrilled with the results and we believe we have a record that people who love roots, Americana and bluegrass will really enjoy. The response to the songs so far has been amazing. Once this campaign is completed we will begin the finishing process and announce a release date that should be no later than this fall.

Thank you so much for checking us out and being part of this project!

Most Sincerely,

Dave & Emma Hart 

Jim VanCleve on the songs: 

Risks and challenges

Fortunately in our case there really are few or no risks. Since the record has already been recorded people can hear it and decide if they like it. They can choose to simply pre-purchase their copy with a smaller pledge or if they really like it, opt to pledge higher amounts for other goodies which will really help us reach our goal.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $2 or more About $2.00

    A Single Song Download and a mighty thanks

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    3 Song Download and an even mightier thanks

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    Album Download

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    Signed CD shipped to you

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    Signed Photo (5x7)
    plus signed CD

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Party! Join us at our release party in the NYC area.
    Plus signed CD and signed photo

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    Includes everything in the $50 pledge
    Plus digital download of the song demos as well a 3 unreleased songs recorded when Emma was younger. You won't be disappointed!

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Includes everything in the $75 pledge
    Plus a cd of an "unplugged" version of the title track "Hold On", which we will record just for this campaign in our studio.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Includes everything in the $100 pledge
    Plus a 1 hour lesson with either Dave or Emma in person or via Skype depending on your location.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Includes everything in the $100 pledge
    Plus we will come to you to chat, perform, teach and hang out. Must be within 75 mile radius of New York City/Stamford, CT area

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Includes everything on the $100 pledge
    Plus a House Concert with the 2 of us.
    We will perform two 45 minute sets for your gathering. If you are outside of the 75 mile radius of the NYC/Stamford area, travel costs would need to be paid by you.

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    Pledge $1,500 or more About $1,500

    Includes everything on the $100 pledge Plus
    A House Concert with a 4 piece band. We will come rock your party with our blend of bluegrass, americana and jazz. If you are outside of the 75 mile radius of the NYC/Stamford area, travel costs would need to be paid by you.

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    Pledge $2,500 or more About $2,500

    Your Own Song!
    We will write a song for you or anyone you would like. This would make a very special gift! We would discuss the content and direction you would like and record it in our studio. (we would retain ownership of all rights)
    We will also perform the song in person for whomever you like. If you are outside the 75 mile NYC/Stamford radius then travel costs would need to be paid by you.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    The Grand Prize!! A Catered Cocktail Party!
    A house concert with 4 piece band and catering for 30 by our amazing sister/aunt Diana (www.dianahartfinecatering.com) The total Hart experience. What's better than great food and
    great music!
    Must be close to or within 75 mile radius of NYC/Stamford area
    (Alcohol Not Included)

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Funding period

- (30 days)