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The Ambassador Arrives: Ed Hale Breaks Into Billboard's Top 30 With “Scene In San Francisco”
In a breakthrough moment for independent artists, singer Ed Hale achieves his first Billboard Top 40 hit with this week’s Hot Shot Debut, “Scene in San Francisco”, which is currently #28 and rising on the Adult Contemporary chart.
March 2, 2012 – In a breakthrough moment for independent artists all over the world, “Transcendence”
Fifteen years and nine albums in as a recording artist, newcomer Ed Hale is no newcomer. Besides releasing solo albums, he also happens to sing in the revered eclectic alt-rock band Ed Hale and the Transcendence, who debuted in 2002 with their first album Rise and Shine, where Hale sang in five different languages and the band merged everything from modern rock to rap with R&B and World Music. Their latest release, the moody and operatic rock epic entitled All Your Heroes Become Villains, came out on Nov 15th to a critical acclaim that the band is becoming more and more accustomed to. While the College Radio friendly, indie-rock Transcendence have been preparing to start touring major US cities to support the new album, a funny thing happened along the way: Hale’s latest solo single started achieving major radio success in the Adult Contemporary format. Something neither Hale nor the band were expecting.
“Our solo albums were just side projects,” Hale commented. “They were meant to give us a break and drum up more support for the band’s new album... So yeah, this is all pretty weird and unexpected.”
It’s Hale’s second single to go commercial from his Ballad On Third Avenue album. Before it, his “New Orleans Dreams” peaked at #10 in the Adult Contemporary format (FMQB) and is still in heavy rotation on the AC Top 100. With two Top 40 songs on commercial radio, and in a brand new format often branded as being “vanilla”, the singer claims the biggest struggle has been maintaining indie credibility and loyalty to his artistry in this new environment of commercial success. Saying no to selling out and struggling to survive while breaking all the rules in the rapidly changing music business has become a badge of honor for many independent bands over the last few years. So what happens if one of them accidentally achieves overnight success?
“Well I wouldn’t exactly call it overnight success,” laughs Hale, who’s been making music since his debut album Eddie was released when he was seventeen years young and hasn’t stopped since. He cites “relentless perseverance and never giving up” as the secret to his most recent success, adding “that and heck of a lot of luck I’m guessing.” Regardless of his exact recipe, Ed Hale’s “scene” proves that the Cinderella story still exists and that the indie revolution is just getting started.
“Ed Hale's Ballad On Third Avenue will feel right at home to the same crowd that loves the music of Wes Anderson movies, Rubber Soul-era Beatles, Bright Eyes, Simon and Garfunkel, or Nick Drake” - music-city.org
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