Michael Green Interviews.... Ethereal
Originally posted on September 16th 2020 here is a Q&A with singer-songwriter Ethereal. She talks about her experiences in music.
Where did it all start for you getting into music?
Officially it started when I went to university to study Fine Art. I willingly got sucked into the live music scene by checking out a fellow colleague’s band called Beatrimes (still going nowadays as The Coolness in London) and following him and his croonies and their culture as a punter and a musician wannabe. This all began at the age of 18 in 1998. I found that with having Aspergers and the need for wanting to express myself verbally and physically like other people, art wasn’t helping and so I gave music a go and I haven’t looked back since.
Who are your influences?
Throughout my teens it was skate punk bands like Rancid, Guttermouth, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Sublime and then were heavier bands like Kyuss, Tool, Metallica, NIN and Pantera.
During my late teens and into my early 20s and experimenting with soft drugs, I got into bands like Chemical Brothers, Faithless, Groove Armada, Portishead and Massive Attack.
Throughout my life there was also motown, soul, hip hop, reggae and soca (perhaps this is called dance hall nowadays) which also seems to have influenced me a lot especially with singing and my instrumental skills.
Nowadays, Portishead and Massive Attack still remain my biggest influences as well as London Grammar, 90’s music and Florence + The Machine.
With songwriting where do you tend to get your inspiration from e.g how do you start your songs & what's your process?
Hmmm, I got my main inspiration from when I met a poetic associate from school and we started writing a line each. No one really taught me about song writing apart from that person. However, after years of NOT writing lines that didn’t rhyme I decided to change my mind and do so and this also helped me to improve my English and Thai language skills (as I also write Thai songs). This also helped me to reduce how much I wrote.
I usually start songwriting with one line and a melody then either use a guitar or my keyboard to write the rest. However if it’s a rap that I am writing, I would produce a beat first either in my home recording studio or a beat box loop on my loop pedal.
How important is it do you feel it is to listen to current music as well as music from the past?
It’s very important because I feel that’s how we respect and show gratitude to those that came before us. Somebody once told me that they believe real music died in 1987. Perhaps they have a point. I know that we are and have been going through an 80s revival kind of sound recently.
Do you feel it is important to watch other acts perform and to watch other live music?
Yes! And not just because of connecting with each other and networking but for me, it’s also about learning things such as stage presence and what kind of songs make people buzz!
Finally what tips do you have for anyone starting out when it comes to songwriting & performing?
Firstly, one can only build up confidence by going out of their comfort zone and achieving whatever they want from their heart that way. That’s the most difficult part. After that, everything else is pretty much straight forward. Don’t be afraid to learn from other people, ask for help, and get inspired by them. It also helps to carry a promo board around with you with your links, your stage name, a photo of you, a part that says ‘Available for bookings’ as well as ‘Thankyou for your support’
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