We are back with another Beneath The Surface edition and this time we had a natter with the lovely Ed Prosek! Find a quiet cosy corner and feast your eyes on this little slice of conversational music magic.
What would you say first sparked your interest in music/who inspired you to make music?
My mother is a renaissance woman of sorts. She studied biology, painting and throughout my whole childhood she was composing Opera, so of course I grew up playing trumpet in her orchestras. She taught me the true importance of creation from an early age, something she had learned from her mother (also an incredible painter). I adopted this belief in the importance of creativity and adapted it to my own interests, but I’m forever grateful of that hereditary spark of inspiration she gave me.
How would you describe the music you are currently creating?
I love being independent. I have turned down many a record deal that would have put me in perhaps a better financial position in exchange for less creative control over what I do. My music is a diary for my thoughts and impulses and I like that it sounds as diverse as it feels to me and that I maintain the freedom to explore different sounds.
This set of songs that are currently being released are some of my most diverse to date, and I couldn’t be more excited about them. This song Make It Easy is an upbeat, joyous song that I wrote very recently and it reflects how happy I am at this stage in my life. I’m in love, I’m writing (in my opinion) the best music of my life and I feel creatively free and open to the ideas I have.
What does your creative process look like?
It has varied quite a bit over the years, but one thing has remained consistent. I always write the music first and let the lyrics fill in the blanks. Another thing I’m very consistent in is that once I begin writing lyrics, I must finish them that same day, or I don’t finish them at all. I heard somewhere that you’re a new person each day, so in order to appease my superstition I try to get it all done before I go to sleep.
I find recently I have most of my ideas, musical or lyrical while walking. Berlin is gorgeous in Spring, everything “springs” to life and blossoms all at once and it helps you pull your head out of your ass and forget how depressing winter is here.
Who would you most like to collaborate with? (let’s send it out to the universe and make it happen!)
I would love to sing/write a song with my favourite band, The Wood Brothers. <3
What is the one message you would like to send out to your fans?
Thank you for helping me turn my ideas into something I get to focus on full time. I love writing music, and I would have done it no matter what, but because you keep listening for some reason, I get to continue and that means the world to me. I’ll try to remain as unabashedly honest as I’ve been through the years and try real hard to not suck.
What’s your top tip to rejuvenate your creativity/get over a writer’s block?
Get rid of your instruments! Or at least stop relying on them for everything. When I find that my ideas are getting a bit stale I try to not use them at all, and instead formulate the ideas completely in my head before touching anything. I try to do all the music, lyrics and hopefully most of the arrangements before I play a note, so that the original idea remains in tact until completion. Sounds pretentious but it has saved me a few times and produced some of my favourite songs.
What’s next for you, what do we have to look forward to/ what are you currently working on?
I have a LOT of wonderful songs that I plan to release later this year, moving back towards the traditional Singer-Songwriter realm I’m known for.
What I’m really excited about at the moment is that I’ve begun composing classical music for the first time since leaving conservatory, and I’ve realised how much I’ve missed it. I’m 2 movements in to my very first Violin Sonata and though that sounds super dry and old-people-y I’m loving it so much. Get your powdered wigs ready.
Thanks for having a truly wonderful chat with us Ed, it was divine, delving in to all things music with you.
You can listen to Ed’s latest single ‘Make It Easy’ here.