Today on our Hot Seat we have Ed Hale with us. He has recently released a new single “The Prince of New York” from his upcoming new album, So For Real, coming out on Dying Van Gogh Records on August 24th. So Let’s have a chat with him.
Twist Online : First of all congratulations on the new album release. This one took you guys a long time. Even for you! What happened?
Ed Hale : Haha! Yeah, I know… But thanks. It feels good. The delay was a combination of a lot of different things really. We’re in the release stage now. So it’s not as prominent in my mind as it was… But looking at it, you know, sometimes that old platitude is true that “You don’t know what you got until it’s gone”. Part of it was that I think… I got off track during the recording process this time, started losing my focus on what we were supposed to be doing. But not deliberately. I just really wanted the album to be good. Roger [Houdaille, bassist, and front man of the band Ex Norwegian] had to keep getting me back on track in terms of what we were trying to do, which was simply record a new album, a solid follow up to Ballad On Third Avenue. But I think I was so worried about the album not being good enough, because “Ballad” had done so well…that I ended up taking us in a lot of different directions musically, and you know, that took us on a lot of different paths and took a lot longer than it needed to. That’s what I mean. I wasn’t acknowledging how lucky we were to have the opportunity we had. But the positive is that we ended up with more than 40 new songs. So there’s some good that came out of it too.
Twist Online : Who or what inspired you to get into the music industry in the first place?
Ed Hale : Well besides the obvious stuff, all the classic music that created the foundation that we all come from, for me it was the infinite creative possibilities that this kind of career offered. I mean… What other job offers this much freedom of expression? Right? It’s insane. And I tend to be pretty ADHD… LOL! As a kid it was really bad. So getting me to sit still and focus has never been easy. What I noticed pretty early on is that when I was making music, you know, even just practicing the guitar or piano or writing songs, I could sit in the same place and focus for hours. It’s like music brought out another part of my brain that I normally couldn’t access. Besides studying and learning, creating music is by far the easiest thing for me to do, hands down. Maybe the only thing I can do well. So it was almost out of necessity. It was a perfect fit from the moment that I started learning how to play an instrument.
Twist Online : Tell us more about your recent track ‘The Prince of New York’? Is it a true story?
Ed Hale : LOL! Well…. It’s not NOT true. Laughs. I mean, songs like that just tend to flow out, you know, without you having to really do anything. Which is the best kind of song. And that’s probably got to do with the fact that you’re just telling stories based on your life and your experiences. And in that, you don’t experience much struggle in the writing process. But at the same time, it’s fictional. I mean, like all works of art, there’s some truth to it…But there’s also some imagination too… You know? Like writing a movie. At this point, I’m not even sure what’s true or not true half the time. So maybe I’m not the best person to answer that question. LOL!
Twist Online : But people seem to be responding well to the new releases so far. That has to feel good.
Ed Hale : Yeah, for sure. It feels great. It was a long time coming. And a hard road at times. So it feels really good. I can’t wait for the whole album to come out. There’s a certain faction of our audience that I think are really going to dig it. And then certain other groups are going to like the other album Born To Lose more probably. And that’s one of the positives of us recording so many songs. We created enough new music to please all the different groups of fans that we have.
Twist Online : What attracts you more, performing on stage or working in studios?
Ed Hale : Well most people would immediately say the Ed Hale is working in the studio for me, because I haven’t been into touring a lot in the last few years. And honestly that’s never been as big of a priority for me as an artist compared to recording music has. I approach recording albums like making movies. They’re permanent. Each one is a unique and complete work of art that will last forever. They’re timeless statements about a certain moment in time and space, told through music and lyrics and visuals. So for me, this process of creating a catalog, a legacy if you will, has become more and more important through the years. Compared to when we were younger and all we wanted to do was go out and gig and play for people. I can definitely see that as I’ve progressed in the business through the years the urge to go play in front of people has diminished a little, compared to this very strong desire to keep expanding the larger catalog of recorded music that I’ve been working on all this time. Yeah.
Twist Online : What’s your favorite music genre?
Ed Hale : Interesting Twist Online. Do people have a favorite music genre? I mean, is that a thing? Personally I don’t have any one favorite music genre. I like pretty much all styles of music. If it’s something that hits me or affects me in some way, it really doesn’t matter what style or genre it is. I’ll listen to it and love it if I’m feeling it.
Twist Online : After the career you’ve had, are there any goals you still want to achieve? Or have you achieved them all?
Ed Hale : No, not at all. There are plenty of goals we still have to look forward to achieving. For sure. There are certain things that I think we all fantasize about in our wildest dreams, you know? And we’ve been really lucky to have achieved everything we have. We get that. Right now our guitarist, Fernando [Perdomo] is in the UK recording a new solo album at Abbey Road Studios. And that’s a big deal for him. We’re all really big Beatles fans. So for him that’s like a dream come true. You know? And we have so many of those kind of things that we’ve experienced over the last twenty years. More than we could possibly remember in any one moment. And I’m super grateful for all of it. We KNOW we’re blessed in so many ways. But at the same time, yeah there are plenty of things we’re still looking forward to doing too.
Twist Online : What’s next for you now that the new album is coming out?
Ed Hale : Right now, we’re knee deep in the whole marketing process with this album (So For Real). Getting the word out, connecting with fans again… Just shaking off the cobwebs and stepping back into the light from the darkness of the recording studios. At the same time we’re also still mixing the next new album Born To Lose. That one still has some songs on it that need to be mixed before we can release it. So you know, it’s a process that never ends. At least how we tend to do it. LOL. Eventually, once the album is released we’ll start focusing more on where we’re going to perform, the different cities. It’s exciting right now. A lot going on.