Canadian Rock Singer-Songwriter Eric Bolton on His Latest Release “Hello, Angels”

Canadian rock singer-songwriter Eric Bolton recently released the single “Hello, Angels”. The singer-songwriter is a Canadian singer-songwriter performing as a solo act, with an accompanying band, and also as the frontman of the rock group, Shy Harry. Eric also owns a music school – E-Bolt Music based in Cambridge, Ontario where he teaches music alongside his team of talented instructors. In July 2020, Eric released his debut single as a solo artist, entitled “Genesis (Let There Be Love)”.

Ai Love Music talked to Eric about working on “Hello, Angels” as well as his influences and artistry. Find out what was the meaning behind the singer-songwriter’s latest track and what kind of sounds he wanted to use. While reading, make sure to check out the track below. Let me know what you think in the comments!

Hey! Could you please introduce yourself!

Hello!  Eric Bolton here from Cambridge, Ontario, Canada.  I’m a performing musician, recording artist, music instructor, small business owner, and community lover.

What got you into music? How has your musical journey been since then?

I always had music around growing up, but it was mostly church music and piano lessons.  In my early-mid teen years, I picked up a guitar out of curiosity and everything changed.   I couldn’t put it down.   I hadn’t had any strong guitar influences though so instead just started teaching myself and began writing and creating my own music off the top.  As I made friends in high school they introduced me to much of the classic rock music I hadn’t heard of in my home and so suddenly BOOM, an endless supply of music to discover and people to be influenced by.   I still feel like I’m playing catch up and love doing deep dives into artists’ work.

Which musical genres and/or artists influence you?

Lyrically I’ve been most influenced by the 70s folk world, folks like Cat Stevens and Joni Mitchell, but then also more modern folk-style artists like Glen Hansard, Damien Rice, and Eddie Vender’s solo acoustic work.  Musically the influences are all over the place but I would say more and more I keep finding my writing fitting in with 90s rock sounds, which was unintentional, but clearly, the subconscious influence was strong…and I’m pretty ok with that.   On the 90s rock note, I’d also have to say that Chris Cornell changed my world from a performance standpoint.  Seeing him live made me approach my performances differently and I think about him to this day.

Tell us one thing you want to achieve musically in 2022!

I’m finally releasing my first full-length solo album!   I’ve released four albums with my other band, Shy Harry, but I have never in all my years given myself the personal creative space like this.   It’s been an incredible journey and I’m so proud of the work my team and I have accomplished.   It’s coming out in September.  I’ll also be recording the full album a second time but all acoustic, along with a couple of already released singles…likely at a destination studio.   On that note, I’m also excited to be booking shows across Canada and likely soon in the UK too.   I’ve never traveled so much to share my music, so this has me quite stoked.

Let’s talk about your newest release “Hello Angels”. What is it about?

‘Hello, Angels’…it’s a song that addresses the bleak and sort of diminishing view many have of themselves, specifically when it comes to worldviews and pressures of religion and religious background.  This sense of failure if you don’t believe specific things, act certain ways, or even in my case – and many others – if even your identity just doesn’t match ‘God’s plan’.  It’s so messed up that there’s such control over people’s lives and well-being, and it seems many people I know have some sort of guilt or pressure around this.  All that said, this song is about learning to rise above that, ditching those voices, and carving a path of prosperity for self.   Healthier views, forward motion, and exciting prospects.

What inspired you to write this track?

With the latter part of that last question, as I did all of that for myself I felt so empowered and have felt the need to write about it and address it in this song and a few others.  It’s actually been really cathartic, and very freeing.   Each time I perform it I feel motivated and I hope others with that sort of history do too.

Which sounds, musical texture, or lyrics do you want to really highlight in this album? 

So, when I write a song, I immediately picture where it would shine.   What sort of venue, outdoor or indoor, what’s the weather like, what size audience, all of that, then lean into that vision during recording.   I also recorded most of this album live-off-the-floor to get a full band live energy.   I am hopeful that people will feel that live aspect and truly I can’t wait to continue sharing these songs on the stages where I believe they’ll shine as intended.

When I listen to this song, I think back to the Seattle Sound of the 90s (from artists like Pearl Jam). How do you incorporate the 90’s rock sound in this track? Why was it really important to do so?

Ah!  There it is!  As I mentioned before I really didn’t mean to be so 90s…I think that’s just where I so often fall in love sonically.  That said, I’m pretty into the thought of 90s sounds returning or being emphasized again in mainstream music.   So many 90s artists have passionate performances, intense lyrics that often speak to very big issues in society and the world, all the while with some huge instrumentation and grit…sign me up for all of that.   On that note, it would be such a dream to one day work with some of those 90s artists and maybe even get to do a show or two.

What is one thing you want listeners to listen for in “Hello Angels”?

I hope the journey is captured and carried.   I hope listeners experience the heaviness of the verses, the lightness of the choruses, but then the anticipation of all to come in life and in the upcoming album while listening to the big ride-out ending.

Any future plans?

I know this album isn’t even fully released yet but writing it has already begun to inspire another one, and the artists I worked with to create this one have quickly proven to be a group I want to continue to explore with.   Excited to get back in the studio with them, but also very excited to have them join me for a big year or two of shows where we bring these songs to life on stage.  Also very keen to get started on the next Shy Harry project too.

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