By his own admission, Moncton native Joseph Edgar never was much of a believer in fate. Although he is in the fortunate position of having released music both on his own as well as a part of acclaimed Acadian band Zero° Celsius, he didn’t quite believe in the power of destiny until it came to the making of his newest record Gazebo.
Celebrating the release of Gazebo at Moncton’s Plan b Lounge next Thursday evening, Joseph tells the Times & Transcript that at the end of 2012, he was all but resigned to the fact that it might be the right time to settle down and temporarily put his dreams of a career in music on hold.
The universe had a different set of plans for Joseph, however.
“My career has always been a little bit surprising,” he begins. “As long as I have been involved in the industry, I have never been a pop star nor has there been any real hoopla around my work. It has just always felt as though I was making steady progress in climbing that big mountain. I turned 40 years old and was seriously concerned that my career was going to start backtracking sooner rather than later.
“I decided that it was a good time to put music on the back burner and land myself a steady job for a little while. Financially, being a musician can be quite a struggle. I have admittedly been very fortunate with respect to my career however I was only maintaining. I didn’t really feel as though I was getting ahead.”
Before he could even submit his first job application, a friend of Joseph’s recommended that he send in some material to a new independent label that was just getting on its feet. Three days after submitting his music, the label reached out to him to gauge his interest at making a record.
“Initially, they were considering releasing an anthology of my music that would include material from my four solo records as well as some material from Zero° Celsius,” he says. “They asked for a couple of new songs to include on the collection. When I sent them 25 songs to pick from, their focus shifted from the record being a look back to being a look ahead at a new record instead.”
Buoyed by the label interest, Joseph decamped to a cottage in the Laurentians with producer Simon Godin to begin making Gazebo. Whether by fate or by complete coincidence, he says that the process of making the record turned out to be one of the best of his career.
“There is no doubt that in terms of making an album, it was the smoothest process I had been a part of. Simon and I would get together for a few days every three to four weeks at this cottage and would record a few songs at a time. The actual making of the album was spread out between April and September of last year, which helped to ensure that we maintained a fresh perspective and fresh outlook on the songs at all times.”
Joseph’s decision to delay putting his music career on the backburner has thus far been a wise one: In terms of radio play, the first two singles from Gazebo have been among the best received of any of his work. And while he continues to toil away at making a name for himself in Quebec, he can’t help but think of these opportunities that might not have come his way had he decided to pursue employment outside of the realm of music.
“I am not much of a hippy but I do think that destiny has played a bit of a part in helping Gazebo come to life. The whole last year has been a little surreal in some ways because I had absolutely no intention of making a new record last year. It seems like every time I decide I am going to try to live a ‘normal’ life, something gets put in my way to make me reconsider that decision,” he laughs.
What: Joseph Edgar
When: Thursday Mar. 6, 5:00 p.m.
Where: Plan b Lounge, 212 St. George St., Moncton
Article published in the February 28, 2014 edition of the Times & Transcript