Emmett Tinley was born in Chicago, Illinois but grew up in Co. Wicklow in Ireland. Through the 1990’s he fronted the critically acclaimed Irish band The Prayer Boat. The band took a break as the new millennium began and Emmett moved to Amsterdam to work on his first solo album. At the end of 2000 he was signed by Craig Kallman to Atlantic Records in New York. The Prayer Boat's final album, 'Polichinelle', was released in the US in March 2001. Emmett embarked on three solo tours of the US but with the label in disarray after 9/11 he decided to return to Europe and focus on recording the new album, ‘Attic Faith’. Working with mainly jazz musicians from Denmark (Martin Spure on bass, Nikolaj Bundvig on drums and Allin Bang on keyboards) the songs began to take shape and Emmett recruited guitarist Marijn Slager (from the Dutch rock band Nuff Said) as plans for recording the album came together. Australian producer Victor Van Vugt (Nick Cave, Beth Orton, PJ Harvey) was brought in to produce and recording began in New York in March 2003. By the end of the year Attic Faith was finished but Atlantic were unclear about what to do next. Plans were put on hold and Emmett moved back to Dublin, finally convincing Atlantic to allow him an Ireland-only release. Attic Faith was licensed to Independent Records and was released in April 2005 to rave reviews and a first-ever chart position at 28. The album went on to be nominated for the Choice Music Prize (the Irish Mercury Prize) for Best Irish Album of 2005.
Some of what the press has said about Emmett Tinley’s ‘Attic Faith’- “….one of the most stunningly beautiful albums you're likely to hear all year”, “.. the most glorious, heartfelt paeans to loves lost, loves left behind and loves that never really existed in the first place except in your wildest imaginings”, “This debut solo album is…a work of great quality far removed from the morose ramblings of many other singer songwriters.”, “…a gorgeously fragile, deliciously delicate album to make you fall in love with sad songs again.”, “..an elegant and vividly soul-searching album”, “Up there with the albums of Rufus Wainwright or Jeff Buckley. Truly sublime.”
In 2009 Tinley signed a new record deal with Mass Market Recordings, a Dutch label based in The Hague. They released the 10th anniversary edition of Polichinelle which also includes 5 bonus tracks. Emmett played some gigs in Ireland and The Netherlands and during dinner before the The Hague-gig in December 2009, the idea of making a new acoustic solo album was shaped. Emmett recorded the album in both Los Angeles and Denmark. The eponymously titled album was released in October 2011 in Benelux, Ireland and the US to excellent reviews.
Since 2013 Emmett has been focused on writing songs for a new music theatre production from Overtone Industries called 'Iceland' in collaboration with artistic director O-Lan Jones. The opening act premiered at the New Original Works festival at REDCAT in L.A. in July 2014. A concert version of the production will premiere at the Ford Theatre's grand re-opening in October 2016.