Having spent the last decade writing music for some of the biggest names in the industry, Ed Drewett is making a break, releasing a brand new single ‘The Unfortunate Gent’, from his forthcoming debut album Ten. Featuring catchy lyrics, Ed’s ability to craft breezy, infectious pop is second to none, with his album sure to have pop fans hearing their favourite songs reworked in a way they’ve never heard them before, we can’t wait to hear more.
Read all about his journey into music, what he thinks makes the best pop song and the highs and lows of the industry. And also watch the exclusive video of Ed’s acoustic cover of ‘The Unfortunate Gent’!
You’re the man behind some massive hits for the likes of Little Mix, One Direction and Olly Murs, what has it been like working alongside some of the biggest names in the industry?
Well, it certainly hasn’t been straight forward, that’s for sure. But then I guess, it wouldn’t have been any fun if it had it been! I was given an opportunity to work in a studio when I was 19, and since then, have been signed twice, dropped twice, had a couple of hits along the way and weathered all that the music industry has to offer. It’s massive highs and equally massive lows. All of which, I believe helped shape who I am today.
And talk me through the decision to stop writing for other artists and start writing for yourself again?
Oh, I’ll always be writing for other artists, it saved my arse after I’d been dropped for the first time, it’s something I love, not to mention my bread and butter. As it stands, my new material is a side project helping me vent certain frustrations I’ve been feeling over the past couple of years.
You’ve recently released ‘The Unfortunate Gent’ from your forthcoming album Ten, can you tell me a bit about the track?
Although I believe I have the best job in the world, after years of having to tailor songs for other people, I really needed to just let loose and write something that had no parameters. I wrote it on my own at the piano and instead of thinking about whether radio would play it or whether it sounded current, I just wrote, completely unrestricted. I wanted to do something fun and different whilst telling a twisted tale.
And can you tell me a bit about the creative process for creating the accompanying music video?
Sure. As this project is self-funded, and I have a mortgage to pay, our idea was to do three music videos in a day. Natural, fun and certainly not overthought. I worked with the fantastic Lewis Knaggs, brainstormed a few ideas and waited to see what happened. For the Unfortunate Gent, all I knew is that I wanted to let out this side to me that only my nearest and dearest get to see. Completely bonkers but just short of a serial killer!!! It was refreshing to just let go in front of the camera and play the character of the ‘Unfortunate Gent’.
Your debut album is out soon! How are you feeling ahead of its release?
Well, as I mentioned, having experienced the many wonders of the music industry, and not being completely delusional, my expectations of this body of work are quite low. In all honesty, this is something I’ve been trying to do since I was 19 and it just feels bloody brilliant to finally say, I have a body of work out. I am finding it extremely cathartic and hope there will be some people out there who like it.
And can you give us an exclusive in to what we can expect from it?
In terms of what to expect, it’s basically my take, acoustically, on some of my biggest songs as a songwriter, and two original songs as an introduction to my own material.
You recently did a masterclass at BIMM Brighton – is helping aspiring artists something that you’re passionate about?
Do you know what, I am still learning a lot myself and still wake up terrified I don’t know what I am doing. Sharing my stories, industry experiences and passion for songs has me fired up, I get lost in my passion for writing a good pop song. It’s something I really enjoy doing, and actually is something I would love to do more often.
Talking about aspiring artists, what do you think the best way is to get your music heard?
You are probably talking to the wrong bloke, but I’ll give you a few of the obvious ones. 1 – practice your art….make sure your songs are strong, crafted and make YOU feel good. 2 – Get your live situation tight, get seen and get heard in the right places. 3 – Do all the painstaking social media stuff that you have to do these days, it’s s**t, but if you can do it well you are winning. 4 – Don’t knock on the doors, knock them down!
What do you think makes a ‘good’ pop song?
A good song is all about opinion, but there is a sweet spot in which millions of people can potentially like the same thing. I believe, this sweet spot consists of a fantastic marriage between the chords and melody. Toto ‘Africa’ for instance, write a chorus like that and you will have people playing your shit for generations to come.
And finally, can you give me one high and one low of your job?
One high – finding out you’ve got the first single of a big act, or finding out you are number one, or finding out a song you have written has connected around the world. I couldn’t pick one, they all make you pinch yourself.
Lows 1 – Songs you believe to have more potential than anything you’ve ever had released, never seeing the light of day and being sat on the laptop
Lows 2 – Being told you’ve got the next first single, and then being told at the last minute it’s only just made the deluxe album! Haha!