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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 8, 2013 - Volume 41 Issue 6
A sentimental journey - Emmy Rossum happily multi-tasking in TV, film, and music
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
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A sentimental journey - Emmy Rossum happily multi-tasking in TV, film, and music

by Albert Rodriguez - SGN A&E Writer

It's easy to be jelly of Emmy Rossum. She gets to have sex with Justin Chatwin on the acclaimed Showtime series Shameless. She has an impeccable voice, thanks to an operatic background that includes appearances with Luciano Pavarotti and Placido Domingo. She'll soon be seen in the feature film Beautiful Creatures opposite Viola Davis, Emma Thompson, and Jeremy Irons. And, well, she's unquestionably gorgeous. Balancing a multi-faceted career, Rossum recorded a new album in between acting projects. Sentimental Journey is her second full-length effort, a collection of nostalgic pop songs reinterpreted marvelously by the 26-year-old. By phone, I spoke to the hard-working star while she was in Los Angeles and this is what Emmy Rossum revealed to me inside 'The Music Lounge.'

Albert Rodriguez: Did you hand-pick all the songs for Sentimental Journey?

Emmy Rossum: I did. I really wanted it to be exactly the songs and the arrangements that I wanted. It's pretty close to my heart.

Rodriguez: Were you in charge of the arrangements?

Rossum: I was, along with my producer and my pianist, Giulio Carmassi, who plays a lot of the instruments on the record as well. But I did kind of oversee the whole thing and listened to other recordings of these songs and picked what I liked best about each version that I heard, and combined them or changed them to how I saw the song.

Rodriguez: How long had this project been planned?

Rossum: Well, in between making the second season of Shameless and making the film Beautiful Creatures it kind of came together as an idea in my mind and I started compiling song ideas, and it started to take over a white board in my house and take over my brain. So it was coming together for maybe two or three months, and then I ended up recording all the songs and figuring out the arrangements in the span of about three days.

Rodriguez: Are there plans to take these songs on the road, or do any live appearances with them?

Rossum: I hope so, yeah. They definitely could be played with an orchestra and symphony, or you could tear it down and do piano and upright bass and even a banjo, so it definitely has the possibility to be done in a lot of different ways.

Rodriguez: Do you mostly listen to this type of music - nostalgic pop - or do you have an expansive music palate that reaches into other genres?

Rossum: I do listen to different things, everything from Ray LaMontagne to Bonnie Raitt to Kate Bush and Alt-J. I'm a little bit all over the place. My taste has definitely evolved.

Rodriguez: Have you ever been to Seattle?

Rossum: I have not. I should change that.

Rodriguez: We have a wonderful Seattle Men's Chorus and it'd be great to have you do a production with them.

Rossum: That would be really fun. I do love a chorus, that's how I started out.

Rodriguez: Do you ever break into song when you're filming Shameless, or a movie?

Rossum: Constantly. I could be making an omelet and break into a song about chopping chives. Shanola Hampton in our cast - she plays Veronica, our next-door neighbor - she always sings and William H. Macy has a ukulele and plays that, so we'll make up silly songs and have fun.

Rodriguez: I think every Gay man in the country, including myself, is jealous of you because of all those steamy sex scenes with Justin Chatwin. I always pause during the intro because there's a nice shot of his butt.

Rossum: Oh, he has a good butt.

Rodriguez: What is he like off the set?

Rossum: He's very outdoorsy. He loves to go kite-surfing, spearfishing, and he's a real manly man. He's very cool, and he loves practical jokes.

Rodriguez: Do you have a BGF (Best Gay Friend)?

Rossum: Probably my manager, who has been my manager since I was 13 years old. And at the time he started representing me he was 21, so he's kind of like my brother. I'm an only child, so he's my best friend and my sibling - he's always there for me. He's my BGF, for sure. [laughs]

Rodriguez: If you could choose one song from Sentimental Journey for us to listen to first, what would it be?

Rossum: Maybe 'I'll Be With You in Apple Blossom Time,' because that was my introduction to this kind of music. My mom would sing that song to me as a nighttime lullaby, so that would be a good place to start.

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