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Published: 2009/11/24
by Steven Hoffer

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros Come Up From Below

Former Ima Robot front man Alex Ebert, known better to many by his stage name Edward Sharpe, combines elements of folk, rock, and indie-pop into the traveling ensemble that is Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. A 10-piece collective based out of Los Angeles, the band is currently touring in support of its debut album Up From Below. With the hit track, “Home,” having already won the band a musical guest slot on The Late Show with David Letterman, the Magnetic Zeros are stirring up whispers as a rising act in the coming year. Fresh off an appearance at Montreal’s Petit Campus, Vocalist Jade Castrinos sat down with Jambands.com to discuss the evolution of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros.

SH: Why don’t we start out by just getting a little bit of background information on the band—there are quite a few of you. How did you all come together and get your start?

JC: Alex had been writing a bunch of songs, and we wrote a song together—we wrote “Home”—and then because some of us were already friends we all just gathered together through playing at the Troubadour in LA. We recorded the record and started playing shows together and now we are on tour. It’s been about two and a half years.

SH: Now that you are settled into a hectic touring schedule, can you tell me how the experience of taking this show out of L.A. has been?

JC: Well we had a two-month tour over the summer and we went overseas. We did a bunch of US shows recently and now we are touring in Canada. We left on November 3 and will be back in L.A. on November 15 to play a show at the Mayan Theatre.

SH: Can you talk about the band’s experience putting together the debut album?

JC: It was totally amazing, a long process, but really good. We all became greater friends through that experience of working together. With the songs on the record that we are touring with, a big portion of them Alex had written as demos. So the structure of the song was there but everything that everyone is playing on the record I think they put into it themselves. Like the melody lines on “Home” that I sing—its not like he told us what to sing. We just did what we heard.

SH: You mention “Home.” That tune in particular has gained a lot of recognition. Can you tell me how that song developed?

JC: Well Alex and I were best friends, hanging out every day and playing songs. I was writing songs and Alex was recording them for me. And then one day we went on a walk together and we just started professing our love for one another. So after walking in the park all day we went back to his apartment and wrote the song.

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