The Musical Collaborations Between The Chainsmokers and Emily Warren

The Musical Collaborations Between The Chainsmokers and Emily Warren

Celebrity News, Music

Since the introductory year of 2012, the DJ and musician Alex Pall from New York City and the singer and producer Drew Taggart from Portland, Maine have been unified as the popular pop music pair known as The Chainsmokers. During the course of turning their sizzling sparks into a towering inferno of hot music, Alex and Drew have been wide open to the idea of allowing creative collaborations to bring out the best in them in the recording studio, which we’ve written about before. From putting out EDM remixes of their favorite indie rock music bands, to plucking up-and-coming musicians out of their stylistically curated playlists and connecting with them for original tracks, The Chainsmokers have maintained this merger of fandom and taste-maker flavor inside their concoctions. But there has been one singer and songwriter that they have clearly had a deeper synergy with, leading to over 10 collabs since 2015, and that is New York City’s own Emily Warren.

“The one side of writing with Emily, especially if she isn’t going to be singing the song, is then trying to find someone that sounds better than her. That’s a real challenge.”

– Alex Pall ( 8/16/2017

Emily Warren has already steeped herself deeply into the exploration of her musical creativity.

“I honestly can’t remember life before music! I was exposed to music by my parents when I was a little baby. Instead of cartoons or Barney, my parents sat us down in front of recordings of operas and by the time we could walk and talk, they were taking us to musicals on Broadway and to the Met.”

– Emily Warren ( February 15th, 2018

After moving on from her early days fronting a band called Emily Warren & the Betters who landed a song on the short-term television show on MTV called Skins, Emily graduated from the high-end NYU Tisch School/Clive Davis Institute in 2015—after already grabbing a songwriting contract with Prescription (Rx) Songs in 2013. Fast-forward to November 14 2017, Emily Warren was named among the Forbes 30 under 30 in the music industry. Singer Skylar Grey happened to be one of the judges and had publically shared how impressed she was by Emily:

“Her sound and style of writing is so fresh, and I find a lot of other writers trying to emulate it. She’s young, but she’s been in the game for a while, so this isn’t some flash-in-the-pan writer. I think she’ll be killing it for a long time.”

Emily Warren not only had brought her organic songwriting professionalism to other stars in her orbit such as Shawn Mendes (“Strings,” “Aftertaste,” “Air,” “Lost”), Alessia Cara (“The Other Side”), Dua Lipa (“New Rules”), and Sean Paul (“No Lie,” “Made Love”), but Emily has stepped up front and center for her own solo songs like “Hurt By You,” “Something to Hold on To,” “Poking Holes,” and “Paranoid.” With this steady stream of creativity, reconvening with The Chainsmokers clearly brings out a lot of new experiences and techniques to draw from.

“She brings out the best in our talents and makes the whole writing process really fun and natural. It’s hard to write good music, and we don’t have a lot of time anymore, so when we do have studio time we want it to be with someone who we know already understands us and our vision, and we also know what she is about.”

– Alex Pall (

The ongoing track listing of Alex Pall’s, Drew Taggart’s, and Emily Warren’s working relationship includes some of your favorite and most recent releases from The Chainsmokers—proving that their artistic love is real.

“Until You Were Gone” (featured artist and songwriting) – 2015

Two members of Emily’s past band Emily Warren and The Betters went on to join another one known as MisterWives, but Warren has no negative feelings when it comes to her time spent with her previous bandmates. In fact, “Until You Were Gone” — the first tune she sang and co-wrote for The Chainsmokers in 2015, was inspired by her departure from her former musical collective.

“The song was just about, do I regret this? Have I made the right decision?”

Emily Warren (

“Don’t Let Me Down” (songwriting credits) – 2016

This song, which was originally for superstar Rihanna, was a gigantic success in oh so many ways for Alex Pall, Drew Taggart and Emily Warren. Co-written with their frequent collaborator Scott Harris, “Don’t Let Me Down” didn’t let anyone down, becoming both The Chainsmokers’ and featured vocalist Daya’s very first top five single on the US Billboard Hot 100 chart, and secured a monstrous collection of Platinum sales certifications, including: 5x Platinum in the United States alone, 6x in Italy and Sweden, 7x in Australia, and 9x in Canada. Then to seal the deal with a kiss of bliss, “Don’t Let Me Down” reached out and grabbed a Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording.

Being separated from people at Coachella is really scary. Everyone’s a zombie, you’re probably a little f—ed up, it’s hard to find your way around and you feel like you’re never going to see anyone again. So when we were on our way to the session, we were like, “It’d be so sick if we could channel that feeling and make a song that would be comforting to hear if you were in that situation at Coachella.”

– Emily Warren (Billboard) 1/13/2017

“Wake Up Alone” (songwriting credits) – 2017

Emily Warren got a chance to put pen and paper together in sweet matrimony as part of the writing squad for “Wake Up Along” that had the added pleasure of featuring hit singer and songwriter Jhené Aiko.—who has three Grammy Award nominations for “The Worst,” “Sail Out,” and Blak Majik.”

“The Chainsmokers have very very good energy. That’s part of the reason why I was so eager to do the song. I feel the energy through their music, and like I said, after I met them, it was a real.”

– Jhené Aiko (Billboard) May 3rd, 2017

To make matters even cooler, “Wake Up Alone” was far from alone, as it sat as the 10th track on the 12-song debut album that The Chainsmokers released in 2017 called Memories…Do Not Open.

“This was like, right in the midst of “Don’t Let Me Down” happening. We (Emily Warren and Scott Harris) were thinking, what do we think The Chainsmokers are going through right now. We hadn’t really seen them in a little while. What could be going through their head? I think a lot of the scariness that comes from having success is wondering whose actually your friend?”

– Emily Warren (MetroLyrics) June 20th, 2017.

“My Type” (featured artist and songwriting) – 2017

“My Type,” along with “Don’t Say,” are the two songs on The Chainsmokers 2017 album Memories…Do Not Open that not only have Emily Warren contributing to the songwriting, but also feature her vocals directly on the finished tracks. With “My Type,” it is a relationship song that has a unique plot twist—being charmed by a person that is clearly bad for us. It delves into how attraction can blind our common sense by feeling way too right for our own good.

“Actually when they (The Chainsmokers) were getting the album together I was like, I don’t want to sing this song, because it’s like an embarrassing thing to admit…it sounds a lot like you are admitting to being ok with being messes around with. When in reality it is kind of this…why do you keep going back to someone who does bad things to you? Why do you still feel love for someone who doesn’t treat you great?”

– Emily Warren (MetroLyrics) June 20th, 2017.

“Don’t Say” (featured artist and songwriting) – 2017

The Chainsmokers have publically expressed the meaning of “Don’t Say” as being about a guy who keeps messing up within the context of his relationship, and his girlfriend reaching her limit. It addresses how far too often we blame life for our bad behavior, instead of owning up to our poor choices and learning from our mistakes.

“It’s a true story about, I was going through this semi-breakup thing, and I was going to see the guy again. And I was playing out in my head what was going to happen. That I was going to be like, don’t even apologize. I was seeing him in like a week. So we got to the (recording) session and we started talking about stuff. And I forget, somebody had the idea about, don’t say you are human. And the song unfolded that way.”

– Emily Warren (MetroLyrics) June 20th, 2017.

“The One” (songwriting credits) – 2017

“The One” carries the double duty of expressing what it feels like to be a mega pop star, pursuing your dreams, and watching them transform into your new reality. But it also climbs into the complicated mess of missing out on priceless moment with family and friends because this same fame game has you traveling all over the world and occupies so much of your limited schedule.

“He (Drew) was dealing with a lot of the media twisting things he was saying and touch with a bunch of his friend, and just feeling like, being in a strange place of putting things aside for his work, and then having his work be so complicated, and not always so nice and rewarding…something a lot of us go through where you forget your friends for a second and put them aside, and how dangerous of a thing that is.”

– Emily Warren (MetroLyrics) June 20th, 2017.

“Sick Boy” (songwriting credits) – 2018 

The Chainsmokers allowed themselves to evolve in a darker, more mature direction with their 2018 music—adding a moodier edge to their earlier frequently fun vibes. “Sick Boy” challenges the idea of social media vanity and how people can take a negative image of you generated by people that don’t even know you, and unfortunately treat harsh labels as the unabashed truth. It delves into what digital hate can lead to when it is constantly flung at you by complete strangers.

“They’re (The Chainsmokers) being honest, and I really respect that. I’ve learned a lot from watching them make those choices. I’m super excited about the songs we’ve done together that are coming out this year, I think a lot of the sonics and lyrics are brave and come from a place of vulnerability, and in my opinion, that’s the most rewarding kind of music to make.”

– Emily Warren ( February 15th, 2018

“You Owe Me” (songwriting credits) – 2018

The Chainsmokers had a rather intriguing Valentine’s Day gift for fans on February 14th, 2018 when they the heart-shaped streak artwork for “You Owe Me.” Things got even more out there with the release of the horror movie-influenced official music video for “You Owe Me” that was directed by their continual lens man—Rory Kramer. The colorful clip featured The Chainsmokers cleaning a mansion, and also cleaning out the guests in the way that vampires would do it. Depression and media overload are thematic elements that The Chainsmokers and Emily Warren infused into the songwriting.

“Yeah, there’s a lot of really interesting stuff to write about right now as an artist. I feel like the Internet is taking over everyone’s lives, and everyone has this crazy love/hate relationship with it. I think that’s basically the theme of almost all of our new songs – relating to the Internet and how our generation interacts with each other on both a friendship and a romantic level.”

– Alex Pall (Billboard) 7/27/2018

“Everybody Hates Me” (songwriting credits) – 2018

What happens when all you want to do is hang out with a few friends and exhale all of your inner pressure out of your body with a fun night—but you happen to be all the way a celebrity? You enter your favorite bar, or any trendy watering hole that you find yourself in when you are on a world tour, but the tension from others is too thick to breathe. Success, wealth and wide recognition is enough to convince anybody that everybody hates them. Being that Emily Warren has known The Chainsmokers before they were super-duper famous, she proved to be the perfect collaborator for the songwriting process on “Everybody Hates Me.”

“She has dirt on us, so we’re kind of like a hostage to her. [Laughs.] No, but she’s the best. She’s probably one of our favorite human beings, period. When you’re comfortable with someone and they know you well, it’s really easy to make music that you enjoy and are excited about.”

– Alex Pall on (Billboard) 7/27/2018

“Somebody” (songwriting credits) – 2018

The manifestation of becoming “Somebody” in the public eye continued to enter into Emily Warren’s life when she suddenly found herself performing “Paris” with The Chainsmokers on “Saturday Night Live” on April 8, 2017.

“That was INSANE! So surreal. Half way through the performance it hit me and I realized what was happening and that I was actually performing on SNL, and I got a huge smile on my face.”

Emily Warren ( May 17th, 2017

With magical celebrity moments like these, writing “Somebody” which features Drew Love of the R&B duo THEY, comes more fluidly from personal experience—fame that The Chainsmokers have dealt with for years. The idea of not wanting to become somebody you don’t recognize, or can’t even stand, just to become a superstar is the struggle at hand with this track. With the easy-going nature and grounded demeanor that Emily Warren and The Chainsmokers all share, this challenge will be one the will overcome and win.

“Side Effects” (featured artist and songwriting) – 2018

The side effect of listening to all of The Chainsmokers’ 2018 tracks is that they have a more introspective approach and are insert their feelings and thoughts more aggressively than even a year before. But to add a light morel light to the darkened corners of their psyches comes “Side Effects,” a catchy, classy, club song that The Chainsmokers describe as: “a summer jam rooted in the sound we created when we first started making records.” It has that thrilling danceable house music vibe that makes the ride to work on a Friday morning that much more soothing—with the focus on after work fun as an exquisite motivator.

“When we get together, we sort of treat it like a therapy session, and then eventually someone says something that really makes sense. Then we start building a song around the idea. We are very much about writing what we are currently feeling into the production of our songs. Writing with Emily makes that process super easy. Our music is reflective of who we are. So with this song, it was just good vibes all the way. The song has a pretty relatable message, but it’s meant to be a fun, feel-good song. Which is exactly how we were feeling at the time!”

– Alex Pall (OnRecord) July 27th, 2018

Being that their kinetic energy and seamless creations are addictive, relevant, and irresistible, we should be looking forward to looking backwards at another exciting list of tracks from The Chainsmokers and Emily Warren very soon.

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