I want people to know they are not alone and they shouldn’t be afraid to tell their own stories.” That is the message that Emily Anderson, formerly of Milan, wants people to take away from her music.  She is a 2005 graduate of Argonia High School.  Emily uses the stage name Mandolin Monroe and now lives in Winfield.  
Emily says “a fresh start” is what brought her to Winfield, “And I just happened to find a home within walking distance of The Pecan Grove (near where the Walnut Valley Music Festival is held every year).  I’m a mother of 5. I used to play for them to get them to go to sleep, and Christmas songs.  I taught myself how to play my own way and I’m learning how to be better.  I moved to Winfield and bought my first mandolin from Roger Sparks in Ark City.  I don’t just love Winfield, I also love Cowley County and supporting local business.”
Emily has not been at this for very long.  She wrote her first song in March of 2016, having “played my first stage next door that following September at Barry Patton’s Picking Parlor.” Her first was called ‘We’ve been Friends,’ which was about “balancing personal life and being a musician.”
In 2016, the musician had written 15-20 songs and has now created over 50 original songs.
Since then, she has played at such venues as College hill Coffee, the Say When Saloon, the Burford Theater, Steamy Joes, Sparks, and the Farmers Market in Winfield. She has also played the last two years as an adult/performing artist at the Walnut Valley Festival.
Her musical influences include “Nickel Creek, Sam Bush, a myriad of great local talent which I prefer above all else. People inspire me more than other musicians. I write songs about my children. I’ve been hailed as a ‘tough’ songwriter. I write about real life. I’ve also been hailed as falsely upbeat, meaning my songs sound happy but they are sad. I believe music is medicine.  I’ve grown and healed.”
In fact, it was an encounter in 2000 with Nickle Creek at the Walnut Valley Festival that inspired her to pick and learn the mandolin.  
Still, “this is just a hobby.  I am a certified ophthalmic assistant for Drs. Gail and Justin Burden.”
Emily says she is “not sure when the CD is coming out.  It will have eight tracks.  After College Hill, I’ll be playing at the Artichoke in Wichita,  March 30th from 8 p.m. to 11:00 p.m., and Saturday March 31st  at The Bar in Winfield from 9:00 p.m. until midnight.  Both dates feature Lawrence-based Buck Bourgeois and Joshua Tate.”
“My mom is my biggest fan,” Emily says proudly. “She reunited with me after a three year silence before I performed at my first music festival. She last requested me to play Barstool.”
Emily (Mandolin Monroe) will be performing at College Hill Coffee in Winfield, on February 23rd, from 7:00 until 9:00 p.m. “Love is in the Air” is the name of the program for the evening.  Dinner with the artist is at 6:00 p.m.