Ed Roman has been keeping himself busy! A Multi-Award nominee and winner, Ed hails from Shelbourne Ontario, Canada and is bringing his music stateside! Ed was so kind to chat about his latest album Red Omen which boasts an outstanding acoustic quality coupled with storytelling charm.
Q: I was listening to the album and was pleasantly surprised! When someone says ‘pop album’ to me, I immediately cringe a little bit. Your album was anything but ‘cookie cutter’.
A: Thank you so much Amanda!
Q: Ed, tell me about this award that you’ve recently received.
A: Absolutely! The Josie Show in Nashville has been running for a long time. [Josie] is the youngest radio host ever. Her story is amazing and she started at the studio when she was six. Since then, she’s built this wonderful empire of supporting independent artists [it is not] just country music but even artists like me. The awards are always getting bigger and I picked up top contemporary artist of the year along with Mike Stover who also ended up with a management award. It’s amazing with these guilds; they aren’t just popularity contests. They are people who are looking at your contributions to American culture. It’s huge for me and I can’t thank her enough for doing all of the hard work.
Q: It’s refreshing to know that there are awards such as this that showcase work that’s unique and features original music.
A: That’s the thing. The promotion of new organizations like this breed a healthy and artistic environment.
Q: The name of the album is Red Omen. I noticed it had a really ‘feel good’ vibe and some of the tracks had flamenco and Spanish style guitar undertones.
A: Absolutely! Folk music for me comes from so many parts of the world and whether it’s flamenco, Spanish style music, or music that originates in Eastern Europe [where I come from], there’s also that gypsy aspect. To me it’s intimately connected to those styles.
Q: I loved the story telling aspect of the title track “Red Omen.” I thought you drove it home.
A: I had the pleasure of playing in an African band for several years. The connection to that world in my heart is strong. I like telling stories. I’m painting these ideas of memories I have from the past and about people. All of that allows it to be a verbal roller coaster of ideas. Red Omen is me. I’m the enigma. People who are going through changes and experiencing things in life draw their own emotions from my music. The scars that we get going through life; they can make us stronger, Amanda.
Q: Whenever I’m listening to a new record one of the first things I think about is, “Is this record reproducible live?” and I think you could do a total acoustic set with this record.
A: That’s it! I am out there with my acoustic by myself. If the song stands on its own in a simplistic form or even without an instrument, it can convey a story. You’re right, when I go and play those tunes acoustically, people are like, “Hey, I like hearing them this way!”
Q: Will you be promoting the album at venues near you?
A: Yes, I’m doing a gig in Toronto here on the 4th and I’m in London again on the 14th, then I’m back here in Ontario for Halloween. Spring of 2017 will bring a lot of playing and fundraising in the United States. “I Am Love” has been out since June so there will be a lot of promotion.
Q: What instrumentation are you providing aside from vocals on the record?
A: I’m a bass player but I also play acoustic. I play drums on the record, electric [guitar}, Hammond Organ, Fender Rhodes, background vocals, main vocals and percussion. In my case, I have Area 51 a nearby recording studio where I can record these things.
Q: Do you find as an up and coming artist that it’s a challenge to get your music out there and attract bigger audiences?
A: That’s always the trial and tribulation. It’s a step forward every day toward something. The most important thing is that you keep out there and you keep making waves.
Q: Ed, is there anything else you’d like to add?
A: Well, I’m just happy to talk about the record. It’s just so crazy with the 21st century and the speed of life. We’re inundated with what seems like a lot of negativity. That’s what I’m trying to do, to push the big love button. At the end of the record, you are left with a smile on your face. There are other levels that, for you, become personal. That’s the root chakra kicking in.
Writer: Amanda Knight