Ethereal on music and spirituality in the age of Internet

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Ethereal makes spiritually-charged music in order to express a wide range of messages and emotions which would be impossible to come across otherwise. In this illuminating interview, we tune in to the universal consciousness to cast a light on the artist’s creative process and fight for justice in a world where people oppose each other so strongly. Whether upbeat or mournful, Yui’s music can’t possibly leave you indifferent. Open up your mind and prepare to ingest words of genuine wisdom.

Hello! Tell the world about yourself. How did you grow up to become the musician you are today?

I’m a free spirit that manipulates this blessed body as much as I can and the universe had chosen me to be a musical artist. Art and music have always been an integral part of this lifetime. In fact, I felt I was not able to fully express myself as an artist until I discovered I can paint a canvas with musical instruments as well as a heavenly and sometimes haunting head voice.

Introduce your current musical projects and tell us what makes each one special for you!

I did have a few projects in the past…..The Subwave Network UK (alternative dance heavily inspired by 80s music), Yui Karlberg (upbeat acoustic covers) and Puffafish Promotions Recording Services. But now, I am just focusing on my solo project Ethereal as I realise that I can throw all my ideas into that one project!
Basically, if I am going to be performing at an acoustic night….I’ll use my guitar, loop pedal and vocals and be accompanied by my keyboard player Mute and my partner Milkshake on percussion. However, if it’s going to be somewhere where people are after upbeat stuff….I’ll loop some dancy beats and synths on the keyboard and sing plus play my acoustic. It REALLY works!

You have been playing music for a long while! How do you find the drive and inspiration to keep going all this time?

Simple!!! It’s therapeutic and it’s MY way of life.

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How is your local music scene in your perspective? Do you feel like you belong there?

Oooooo! this is such a HOT question. Well, I believe in adapting to your own habitat so even though I prefer my ambient songs, I am still willing to go and perform my upbeat numbers or at least make em more upbeat (instead of playing under a different project like I did in the past). I now have a wireless transmitter and receiver so that means I can go and engage the crowd a lot easier with guitar solos.
The local music scene has changed and it’s still changing for the better. Most people prefer covers but people here are warming up to originals big time and that makes things easier for musicians like myself.I do have a sense of belonging here, yes, because of all the friends I have made along the way.

What is your all-time favorite record and how did it change you as an artist?

All types of music inspire me, but I must admit that it was originally John Martyn’s ‘Bless The Weather’ followed by Bon Iver – ‘For Emma’, then Florence and The Machine’s Ceremonials. They all played a big part of influencing me and still give me goosebumps.

What are your favorite software and hardware tools for music production?

I swear by Ableton Live, my Focusrite audio interface and Rode condenser microphone, and I’m still a fan of Shure mics. I have recently fallen in love with Logic Pro X, but I’ll leave that to a friend of mine who uses it to mix and master my songs.

What is your songwriting process like?

Very often it’s coming up with that one special and rather poetic line then doing the rest with the acoustic. Nowadays, my songwriting has become shorter because I know most people have a short attention span. So the structure would be…

Chorus
Verse
Chorus
Instrumental
Chorus

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Out of all the live shows you played, which one was the most memorable, and why?

Definitely The O2 Academy in Bristol for my friends’ festival celebrating Chinese New Year! She asked her team to specifically look after all of us as if we are stars and we performed on a very big stage. It was like a dream come true. I would love to do that in the future to a crowd full of people.

What is your biggest musical goal?

To heal the world with my spiritual beliefs and love and to do that, I would need to become ‘a household name’ or be well known across the world for not just my music but as a pioneer for trans people, against racism and mental illnesses, as these are all things I have experience with.

How has being on Drooble helped you as a musician?

It’s certainly helped to build up my self esteem, meeting others who are in the same position as me, and giving me an insight as to perhaps how to market myself in order such as build an epk, then radio play, etc.

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