Many kids growing up in Lincolnville don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what the next 30 or 40 years of their life will be like. That wasn’t the case with Emma Moseley. From an early age, she had a pretty good idea of where her life’s journey would take her. She was going to be a musician.
With the exception of a three year period spent in Georgia (her step-father was an Army Ranger stationed at Fort Benning), Emma has called St. Augustine home. While in Georgia, Emma’s mom was diagnosed with breast cancer, and Emma dropped out of high school to help care for her mom while her step-father was deployed overseas. During this time, Emma enrolled in online schooling and got her high school diploma at the ripe old age of 15. “I graduated three whole years before my class. I was working a 40 hour a week job at 16 years old and playing music full time on top of it. I had a much different upbringing than a lot of kids.”
While living in Georgia, she would regularly visit St. Augustine to see her father. It was during one of these visits, when Emma was only 13, that she was invited to play an “open mic” at Tradewinds Lounge. It was at Tradewinds where she met the people who would one day be her musical peers and she was welcomed with open arms. “I was there every Thursday, playing until they basically kicked me out.”
During the years between her first Tradewinds gig and a four-song demo recorded with Jim DeVito at Retrophonics Recording Studios in Crescent Beach, she formed a duo with friend Bobby Turner (who would later join The Emma Moseley Band) and went by the name The Southern Wailers. By the time she was 17 years old, Emma was touring. “We started touring and we made a living; made really good money, actually.”
Emma was around 19 when the idea of “The Emma Moseley Band” started being talked about. It was around this time when she met former Puddle Of Mudd bassist Sean Sammon. “We started writing together a little to see if it would work out, and it did.” With the release of the first album “Face South” in 2014 came a tour, consisting primarily of club dates. “We played a lot of free shows and a lot of empty rooms. We paid our dues.” It was when they were gearing up to record their second album, “949,” that the band started getting calls to not only play festivals like “Rhythm & Ribs” in St. Augustine but also “South By Southwest” in Austin, Texas where they played before a sea of 100,000 people. They also started getting calls to open for national touring acts like Ana Popovich and Ted Nugent.
At only 28 years old, Emma Moseley has driven down a musical road that takes some people a lifetime to travel, and she shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon.