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by Silke Hartung

NewTracks New Artist: Ed.E

by Silke Hartung

NewTracks New Artist: Ed.E

Tāmaki Makaurau singer-songwriter Edward Etuale aka Ed.e has been involved with music for much of his life, but lately has moved from classical singing and choirs to create contemporary RnB. The title single of his debut EP ‘Wanderlust’ featured on NZ ON Air Music‘s NewTracks compilation this September.

Was any high school or other music training especially important to you?

I attended a little school called Dilworth out in Newmarket. Over there I received classical singing lessons in my last three years of high school. Within those years I sat three singing exams which included an advanced cert from Trinity College London, which I was fortunate enough to pass with distinction. Following high school I started a degree in classical singing at the University of Auckland. Although I never got to complete the degree I still believe it to be a crucial part of my music journey as it expanded not only my taste in music but also my general music knowledge and theory.

Any other projects that we might we know you from?

I’ve been part of a couple theatre shows as well as choirs and a couple gigs here and there, but I’ll be honest, it’s been a while, lol!

What’s the background of how this ‘Wanderlust’ project came to be? 

This track is the third song on my debut EP. The idea for the EP was to try to highlight different stages in my relationship and one of those stages was early in our relationship where, though we were finally together despite the odds we faced, there were still a lot of doubts we both had. This song Wanderlust tried to explore the ideas of me encouraging my partner to go explore and see what exactly what you want… I just wished that upon her exploring she still finds me in the end!

My partner is a singer herself so she, along with our other close mates, helped bring this project to life. Whether it was just chipping in ideas, laying down some vocal harmonies or helping with instruments, I could not have done it without their help. It’s also important to me that I mention the help and support of 216 Records which is a fairly new label that I am associated with. 216 was established with the mission of empowering and nurturing young talents from South Auckland who never dreamed it possible to make and release their own music. The label aims to provide opportunities for emerging artists to showcase their skills, find their potential, and make meaningful impacts through music. I’m proud to say I’m a product of that.

How has your writing evolved from your beginnings in songwriting to now?

To be honest I can’t say I’ve evolved much as I’ve literally just started writing my own music this year, lol!

What made you decide to go with ed.e as your artist name?

Well, everyone calls me Ed or Eddy, and I thought I’d just add the ‘E’ at the end of it since my last name starts with E. IDK, I just thought it was cool and easy, but if I’m being honest we’ve actually requested the distributors, Precise, to change my name to just Ed Etuale, but are still waiting for them to do that. Mostly because if you search ed.e on Spotify and Apple Music it’s a mission and a half to find my music, hahaha!

Aside from this release, what’s been the big highlight to date?

I’ve been fortunate enough to have a couple songs play on Mai FM and regularly on Niu FM. Always a buzzy feeling hearing your song play on the radio. In terms of gigs 216 were able to score our collective a gig opening for a couple of well known NZ artist such as Swiss, Lion Rezz and SWIDT. I listen to those dudes A LOT so to be on the same show as them was pretty cool.

What makes Wanderlust stand out for you as a single?

For me, this song really stands out because it’s not really a genre I’m looking to dive deep into. If you get a chance to listen to my EP you will definitely be able to see how much of contrast and different in pace and vibe this song is to the rest. Naturally, I’m a singer and although I’m rapping in this song, I still wanted to incorporate a bit of singing and harmonies, which I thought I did okay.

What is the story behind Wanderlust?

Wanderlust is the urge to explore (I think lol) and this song encourages that significant other to go about and do just that, explore. To find and know what you might be longing for. I did the same but I found that there is no other person I want. The hope is that significant other realises the same thing…

What’s your favourite moment, musical or lyrical, of the track?

‘ We overcome too many hills to miss the rising sun’, simple but one of my favourite lines in the song, especially cos in terms of my relationship this was very true for us. Would also have to say the whole second verse would be a highlight for me!

Who did you record it with and where?

The single along with the rest of my EP were all recorded in my bedroom with second-hand equipment that I had saved up to buy off one of my mates. I haven’t been able to get any sort of funding so a lot of the production were either done on my own or sent to a friend who was willing to help me bring the song to life. In terms of this recording, I was so mad when it was released, lol. Was kind’a my own fault though. When I was asked to send through the song to our publishers I sent the draft version instead. We asked if they could swap it but they still haven’t!

What would you like listeners to take away from this song?

Well I had a lot of fun trying a genre I’m not too confident in, so I hope listeners feel at least a fraction of the joy I felt when creating Wanderlust.

How do you generally work out what song would make a good single?

To be honest, I’m not sure, but what I do know is that although I start a lot of songs, I’ll finish the ones that I would most likely blast in the car or on speakers myself, and just hope that others would do the same too.

Anyone else in your team?

As mentioned earlier, I am a part of 216 Records. No other people in my team other than my partner who helps a lot with my songs. I run most of my songs through her to see what she thinks, and my close friend Stewart who is a musical genius and helps with everything musically.

Can you please name three other local tunes that would fit well on a playlist alongside your song. 

  • Mel: Take Your Time
  • Villa & Noble: Feelangz
  • Matt Nanai: Let’s Dance

Are there any musical blogs, Youtube channels or podcasts you’re super into?

Just recently started keeping up with Tahi FM. They had me on for an interview not too long ago and since then I catch some new music from their posts here and there. I love watching NPR’s Tiny Desk concerts on Youtube and I also love making renditions of different songs that I post on social media so I like watching Radio 1 Live Lounge for their renditions/covers they have on their channel.

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