2017 marks 30 years of recording his songs for release out into the world and, to celebrate this milestone, Walter Ehresman is releasing a series of "Best of......" compilations throughout the year, organized by style and mood. They draw from the over 200 songs he has written and released, across 16 solo and four band albums, between 1987 and 2017. No song will be repeated across any of the collections.
As those of you familiar with his prodigious output know, Ehresman tends to jump genres on pretty much every song on any given album. As he said in February of 2017, "....This is because I take the musical inspiration as it comes, and also have just never wanted to release an entire album of songs all in the same genre, with the exception of 2007’s experimental dark ambient album “The A.D.G. Project” (www.cdbaby.com/cd/ehresman6
, written for use with a large art installation at Burning Man that year).......Like many musicians, I rarely think of genre at all when I write and record.....I just pursue the idea wherever it leads, and in the end it 'is what it is,' as they say.
"I never have a good answer when asked by people: 'Oh, you’re a songwriter…..what kind of songs do you write?'...... Some songs are in recognizable styles, and some I frankly don’t what genre you’d put them in. But given all that, I think all my songs can be sorted out into a few general categories that have as much to do with mood as with a recognizable genre."
Nine compilations are planned, and this fifth one covers the electronic rock songs scattered throughout Ehresman's catalogue. He explains "Back when I started getting serious about listening to music, in the '70s, the term 'electronic music' meant something very different than it does today.....From the beginning, I was a fan of Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, Synergy (Larry Fast) and other pioneers of synthesized music, not to mention Todd Rundgren, Peter Gabriel, Pink Floyd, Yes and other progressive groups that incorporated creative synth work into their sound."
"When I started my nine year run of going to the Burning Man Festival in 1999, I was exposed to a lot of the 'new' electronic music, which meant electronic dance music. Much of it struck me as creatively-bankrupt rehashed disco, with nail-hammering repetitive bass drum beats that are about as boring and headache-inducing as a rhythm can be......But since I was about to begin an 8-year stretch of being a disc jockey on Radio Electra (the most powerful pirate station at Burning Man), I thought I needed to find some EDM that I liked so that I could incorporate it into my playlists.....This led me to finding wonderful electronica from Brazil, Turkey, and from North African ex-pats living in Paris, with each incorporating local musical styles into their electronic beats (and almost entirely eschewing the oh-so-boring nail-hammering bass drum programming)."
"Listening to this international EDM in turn had an influence on my own creative process......I started incorporating electronica rhythm parts into my songwriting and recording, and I found that I loved the juxtaposition of bringing those two worlds together.....I'm happy to say that it's an approach that I use to this day."
On this new volume from the "Best of....." series, you'll hear influences from pioneers in the fusing of rock and electronica, from David Bowie to Bill Nelson to Todd Rundgren. Since Ehresman came at creating this music from a rock background, rather than coming up in the DJ/electronica culture, the pieces on the album continually show an unexpected slant on melding the two musical worlds. In fact, it's fair to say that you're hearing something.....well....'original" here.
Crank it up and dance on the furniture!