My latest EP, "Everything to Me" marks a courageous and exhilarating step toward a more exposed and authentic sound. All five songs represent different facets of my faith in life, in humanity and in love. Putting these songs out into the world required the perfect collaboration, and I'm infinitely grateful that Jay Nash, a long time friend and musical peer, teamed up with me to produce this EP with such care and sensitivity. Jay has aimed to pare down the extraneous harmonies, effects and solos so that my voice, lyrics and fiddle playing can be wholly revealed, inviting you into a more intimate experience of me and my songs. Taking away the extra vocal and string harmonies made me feel naked at first, but now that the recording is complete, it feels just right. As if Jay teased the song down to its essence. Needless to say, I'm also grateful that I mustered the courage to jump back into music after a few years of being a mom, a yoga teacher, and an explorer of ministry studies (yes, life is rich).
As a child, music was like air, water and my mom's freshly baked bread. I played string trios with my father and sister, and sang in choirs and opera productions with my mother. Wanting more space, fun and creativity in my music, I veered from my classical roots during college and started singing and playing the fiddle in a folk duo with my incredibly talented and beautiful friend Anya Burgess (who now plays in the Grammy nominated Cajun group Magnolia Sisters and the sassy band Bonsoir Catin. Anya and I travelled through Western Europe, New England and Nova Scotia playing on street corners, pubs and in farm houses. In Ireland locals thought I was dark Irish and called me Eilish. The mystery of the Irish landscape and the sounds of the ancient language acquainted me with a part of myself that would continue to grow and nourish my writing and performing from that moment on.
I spent the following years pursuing a degree in Early Music at Indiana University. I was drawn to Early Music because of the mysticism I found within the ancient tunes and the pure singing style. To me, Early Music seemed like a folk version of classical music. I especially loved the polyphonic choral music, Palestrina in particular. I have always felt the intuitive connection within the way the parts weave and dance together; a style that has inspired much of my writing and harmonizations. I moved to Boston to sing in professional choirs, join Early Music ensembles and find myself again. Boston was a familiar town. My family had lived there for generations, and I felt at home in the city (although for the record: never a Bruins fan. Go Habs!). In Boston, I met the talented conductor/arranger/composer Chris Eastburn. He and I performed, composed and arranged a number of my songs together for children's choir. One of our songs, "Castles in the Air" was published and performed at Saunder's Theater for the ACDA Choral Conference. There is nothing more precious than watching 70 or more children harmonize a song that I had written or even co-written.
After a few years in Boston, I enrolled at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, UK, where I studied, composed and performed with musicians from around the world. We traveled to primary and secondary schools that served disadvantaged immigrant communities in hopes of inspiring their creativity. The irony was that these kids inspired us, influencing our compositions and our performances with their candid and raw take on music. Though London can be a dreary and smelly city, I found much hope amidst the many faces of humanity all tucked-up, living together.
I recorded my first CD in New York City with producer Scott Mann. Called "Simplicity," it's a compilation of songs I wrote in London. There was a lot of fun and magic in the making of it (in fact I began dating my gorgeous husband, Jeremy Greene, percussionist/architect at the cd release event). A few years later I recorded my second, "Beauty in Mystery" in Los Angeles, with the brilliant producer and internationally acclaimed jazz musician Deron Johnson. I met so many incredibly talented musicians while recording "Beauty in Mystery", one of them being a genius bass player, composer and sound engineer, Michael Valerio. He and I continued on to another jazz influenced project which is yet to be released.
Back in Montréal I performed and recorded with the experimental electro-punk band Swedish Radar and played fiddle and sang with the bluegrass/roots group Althea Jean. Both of these bands are still active, but babies, book tours (bandmate Curt Stager), boat building (bandmate Everett Smith) and other such events have created a few detours along the way. In 2010 I had my baby boy Xavier, and life became more about being with family and treasuring bath time and sand box play. Jeremy and I have continued to write and record material together in a group we call, "JE", but this EP marks my next step back out into the world as, well, myself.
Eliza Moore E2M’s tracks