M.E. Baird Spotlight
M.E. Baird is a Singer-Songwriter and Artist. For M.E. Baird music and art is much more than just pursuits. They are his life force and foundation. M.E. Baird yields from the songbook of Folk, Rock and Blues with his own original interpretations that are enigmatic, deeply emotive, and visually rich. His live performances are nothing short of compelling with his lamenting vocal style and singular stage presence. Since beginning his career in 1992, M.E. Baird has toured nationally, and internationally, has written, and recorded four albums and several Up’s. He has also contributed songs to compilations and soundtracks including original compositions for film and television internationally. Yet, he is practically unknown in his own country.
In 2014, M.E. Baird recorded FALL in Melbourne. His first truly solo album in twenty years. Due to personal circumstances and relocation north to New South Wales the album wasn’t officially released until May 2016. FALL was an album burdened with personal tragedy, loss and grief resulting in an unavoidable sorrowful feel to the material. The Album received critical acclaim and was hailed for its emotive intensity.
M.E. Baird’s follow up solo album and 5th long player, TIME is a tad more upbeat. At its core the album is a lyrical and sonic journey through age, experience and a testament to the passing of ‘time’. The tracks on TIME individually explore varied sub texts ranging from belonging, coming of age, corruption, migration, fortune, misfortune, contempt, loneliness and the joy of being alone.
All tracks for the album were written in the winter of 2016 and recording of the album began in the following winter. The album was recorded at Wild Mountain Sound Studio, Brisbane located amongst the sublime beauty of Mt Nebo’s Eucalyptus forests. The album was produced by producer/musician, Jamie Trevaskis. Jamie and M.E. Baird had mused for some time about recording a new album together, with Jamie playing a leading and creative role in the co- production of the album. When recording began it became instantly clear that Jamie, as a collaborator was be able to transport the songs sonically into a universe far beyond the ordinary.
It was important for the songs narrative to tell Jamie Trevaskis where the song/story needed to go sonically. Where a song needed to be tough, it had to be threatening, where it needed to be honest, it needed to be candid, where there was tenderness, it must be achingly forgiving and where there’s was anger, it’s uncompromised. It was creatively vital that the album not pander to any genre, audience or expectations, of course, there is some hat tipping and influences evident; it would be arrogant to pretend otherwise. Both Jamie and M.E. Baird wanted to show that it is an album born of maturity, rigour, determination, and patience.
With this album there was a return to how M.E. Baird made records in the past. All tracks were recorded to analogue tape, predominantly live and with very little overdubs. This was done not for nostalgic reasons but for a more ‘authentic’ audio representation. It also places more emphasis on musicianship rather than software know-how and digital trickery.
In regards to band members, most notable in the line up is Welsh/Australian songstress Sali Bracewell with her piano/keyboard skills and extraordinary vocal talents. Sali’s vocal dexterity is featured on many of the songs but most clearly on the title track, Time and My Girl. Also key to the process was long time collaborator, Hannah Jane who provided her distinctive and haunting string arrangements, violin playing and virtuous vocals. Seconded from Brisbane, bands Sacred Shrines and Hillsborough for the rhythm section were new friends, Phil Usher on drums and Robbie Zawada on bass, truly two of Brisbane’s finest musicians. Lastly, but certainly not least, was notable Brisbane singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, Skye Staniford who provided percussion. The album was Mastered by Andy ‘The Master’ Stewart at The Mill Mixing and Mastering, studio, Gippsland, Victoria, Australia.”
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