AbsolutePunk.net Interviews Ed Hale and The Transcendence Frontman Ed Hale   

03.27.12 Interviewed by: Linda Ferreira
3. What bands are you influenced by?
I think each guy in the band has a different set of influences. So I can only speak for myself. But one thing I will say is that almost all of us are pretty much into anything. We’re IN the music business, you know. So there’s no real style or genre that we don’t come into contact with. I mean, right now, while we’re doing all this promotion for my latest single “Scene in San Francisco” which has jumped into the Billboard Top 30, our keyboard player Jon Rose is out on tour with Julia Iglesias in South America. Crazy. But you know, that’s the biz. All our work right now is centered around promotion, meet and greets, record signings, interviews, photo shoots, so the guys in the band have time to do other things. And this is a great gig for Jon. No way he could take it, sincerely do a great job, or even get the job, unless he was into a wide variety of styles of music. Dig?
Me, I’m into anything and everything. I really NEED music. For my health and sanity. To make me feel good. Like it’s part of my soul or something. I did this photo shoot yesterday that was very elaborate. A lot of makeup and styling and people on deck. And in order to get into it, we had to have music going in the background. They asked me what I wanted to put on. They were using Pandora, which is an incredible tool. One of the coolest things to come out of this new age. And we’re in this photography studio filled with people of all different ages and backgrounds and at one point someone put on contemporary rap. But I just wasn’t feeling it. It totally ruined the vibe of the shoot for me. Plastic, put on, contrived, commercial for the sake of being commercial, all posing and bragging and nothing substantial underneath. This is what it felt like at least. In the room.
But I had to be “on”, right, totally ON… for the camera. So I went for the pure shit, the stuff that created me and who I am. Lou Reed, David Bowie, T Rex, Donovan, Hendrix, The Beatles, Zeppelin, Lennon, Wings, The Stones, Bob Dylan. Even the Dandy Warhols or The Pixies, The Replacements, Radiohead, U2, Muse. At its heart, this is where my music is coming from at i’s core. Plus a few thousand others I suppose.
4. If you could tour with any bands, past or present, who would they be and why?
The Rolling Stones in the 70s. For obvious reasons. Never has been and never will be another “world’s greatest rock band” quite like the Stones in the 70s. Way before all the bullshit started in the music business. Crafting songs like pottery to fit a specific genre using computers. Narrow-casting to please niche-niche markets based on polls and statistics. This kind of thing has ruined music as we know it today. We’ve got people like Adele or Katy Perry at the top of the charts who use three to ten people to help write a freaking song. And another five to produce it. That’s become the norm now. Everyone pandering to everyone else in an attempt to please a very small imaginary group of music listeners who are scrambling away from regular radio in hordes for that exact reason. They’re out there looking for something REAL and SINCERE and AUTHENTIC and the radio and record exec guys just don’t see it. Albums like DARK SIDE OF THE MOON were made with a small band of four guys and a producer and a few engineers. And that’s it. Real artists who could write great songs, looks be damned. Yeah, I’d love to tour with Pink Floyd if they ever got back together with Roger. For sure. I’d do anything with Paul (McCartney) just because he is still alive and, like many, I feel like I owe him a great deal for who I am today.
5. Best food to eat on tour?
I live on Sprite, coffee and protein shakes man. Among other things. I may not be the best role model for that kind of question.
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NEW YORK, March 6, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – In a breakthrough moment for independent artists, “Transcendence” singer-songwriter Ed Hale achieves his first Billboard Top 40 hit with last week’s Hot Shot Debut, “Scene in San Francisco,” which is currently #25 and rising on the Adult Contemporary chart. The song is from his latest solo album, Ballad On Third Avenue (Dying Van Gogh Records).
Fifteen years and nine albums in as a recording artist, newcomer Ed Hale is no newcomer. Aside from his solo albums, he also sings in the eclectic indie rock band Ed Hale and the Transcendence, who debuted in 2002 with the album Rise and Shine, where Hale, nicknamed “The Ambassador,” sang in five different languages. As the band prepared a national tour to support their newest release entitled All Your Heroes Become Villains, Hale’s latest single started achieving major radio success in the AC format.
Hale noted, “Our solo albums were just side projects, so this is all pretty weird and unexpected.” Rising on both Billboard and the FMQB AC charts, “Scene in San Francisco” was picked up by Sirius XM satellite radio station “The Blend” and has been ranked the #1 Most Active Independent artist release on the Mediabase AC Chart four weeks straight.
Hale’s first single to go commercial from Ballad On Third Avenue, “New Orleans Dreams,” peaked at #10 in the Adult Contemporary format (FMQB) and is still in heavy rotation on the AC Top 100. With two Top 40 songs on commercial radio, the singer’s biggest struggle he says has been maintaining indie credibility and loyalty to his art. Breaking all the rules and saying no to selling out has become a badge of honor for many independent artists. Hale cites “relentless perseverance and never giving up” as the secret to his most recent overnight success, adding, “I wouldn’t exactly call it overnight success.” Regardless of his exact formula, “The Ambassador’s” Cinderella story is a major spark in the evolving indie-music revolution.
“Ed Hale’s Ballad On Third Avenue will feel right at home to the same crowd that loves the music of Wes Anderson movies,Rubber Soul-era Beatles, Bright Eyes, Simon and Garfunkel, or Nick Drake” – music-city.org
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New interview with Transcendence singer/songwriter Ed Hale to appear in Pens Eye View Magazine on March 9th. Hale talks about his latest hit single “Scene in San Francisco” becoming the Hot Shot Debut of the Week in Billboard Magazine, and other songs on his Ballad on Third Avenue album including “New Orleans Dreams”, as well as what life is like on the road, how he overcomes stage fright, his band’s new Dark Knight-themed album All Your Heroes Become Villains and what it’s like having hit songs on Adult Contemporary radio when you “play in a rock band”.