In just a few months, he has gone from the local scene to the biggest Italian stages. Edward Menichella a.k.a. Ed, a singer-songwriter native of Sansepolcro, born in 1988, has been the musical revelation of the year, coming up from the “bottom”, thanks to his voice, to the melody, making his way beyond talent shows.
di Andrea Tafani
His history, starting way back, from years of songs and concerts with his ex-band, the E45, and then alone with his acoustic guitar around the French Riviera and the Adriatic coast. This story, however, takes an unexpected turn when in January 2015, he did a cover of “Sabato” which Jovanotti liked so much that he complimented him on Twitter and then called him to play on the TV show Webnotte airing on Repubblica.it. Until this summer and the proposal to be the opening for the Lorenzo shows in the stadiums for his tour in 2015. A chance to change everything and Ed jumped at it immediately.
First of all, Ed, what was it like to play in front of thousands of people?
«Uh, it makes your head spin. Like when you are on top of the mountain and you look around, you look at the landscape, the sky and you feel small, but at the same time almost omnipotent. You are at the centre of something huge, something great. All those people are there to get excited, to feel that magic thrill and you are there, on the other side, alone, you know that you are there because you can give them that thrill, make them all excited, even if just for an instant. You are so small and so big at the same time. I don’t know how else to describe it. For the rest, playing is the same thing, whether there are 10 people or 50,000. Everyone who plays or sings knows what I am talking about».
The first time that you went up on stage to open a Jovanotti concert what were you thinking?
«That there must have been a mistake, and that in some way they would have all realized it in a few minutes. Then as soon as I played the first chord of my song, “Generazione”, the one I was opening the concert with, I saw the sun setting on all those people and I understood that for the first time in my life I was in the right place, at the right time. Right after that, my thought went to the guitar because obviously sol (G) seemed to be a little off-key! ».
When you did the cover of “Sabato”, was it your goal to get to Lorenzo or did it all happen by chance?
«I decided to do a cover of “Sabato” because it hit me in a special way the first time I heard it on the radio. Then I thought that it would be cool to play a cover as soon as it came out. Like when Hendrix did a cover of “Sgt. Pepper’s” only three days after the original came out. So I decided. Entirely by chance. The choice to upload it on Soundcloud and not on Youtube instead, was exactly because I had seen that Lorenzo had re-posted many of the remixes of “Sabato” on his channel. I thought that if he liked it, maybe he would have shared mine too. But it was pure imagination, until it happened».
What kind of atmosphere do you breath in a tour like this?
«Magic. It’s like being part of an itinerant circus. We have been in all the biggest stadiums of Italy, from Milan to Messina. Obviously the air that you breath behind the scenes is that of a workplace, like in restaurants at the weekend, at dinner time. Everyone moves super-fast and they know that if they don’t do their work well, something will go wrong. And nothing must go wrong. You are in the A league. You can’t let yourself make a mistake. But all of this in a climate of employees, musicians, staff which is always very positive, joking, light. In short, you feel the weight of the responsibility but the atmosphere remains evocative».
Who are your musical references?
«Bob Dylan, John Lennon, Lucio Battisti, the Beatles. Then many more, but these are my saints».
Are you planning something for the future? A disc?
«I’m writing new songs. I already have many, but I need to write as many as possible. For the future there are many plans, certainly an album, but I don’t know exactly how, when, in how much time, or for whom. I only know why. Anyway it’s better not to plan too much, because then life happens and it messes up all your plans!».
Advise us on the album or song that we should not miss coming out this autumn-winter.