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INTERVIEW: Israeli Guitar Icon Tamar Eisenman

Hi Tamar, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?

Hey VENTS, happy to be here! Feeling good.

Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Easy Comes Free“?

Sure. I wrote this song one morning about two years ago. It was probably living within me for quite some time, and eventually it was one of those songs that almost wrote itself. I remember I had a show two days after that morning and I played it then, for the first time. I had barely memorized the lyrics and probably played it too slowly, but the song was taking over me and I had to sing it that night. There is a video of that performance – you can see it here.

Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?

Oh yes. Actually it is a disguised love song. Well, let me explain, I had a big fight with my partner one night, honestly, I have no memory what the fight was all about. In the morning while we were still pretty wired with each other, or maybe we were sort of lazy, whatever that means, it took us a few hours to reach out again to each other to reconcile and peace it out. The song is about those hours of making up – about an argument that transforms to a conversation and an understanding, despite a disagreement. By genuinely putting oneself in their loved one’s shoes, this is manageable. If they can do that and stay together, they win. It’s a constant “mind game” and a lot of work. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. Just to emphasize this idea, all the “Is” in the text are actually “You”, and all the “Yous” are actually me.

Any plans to release a video for the single?

Yes! We will be shooting next month. I always wanted to make a video in NYC. Seems like the timing is just right.

The single comes off your new album On My Way – what’s the story behind the title?

On My Way is the title of one of the songs on the album. This album is my debut US release, since I moved here a year ago. The song “On My Way” is about that excitement and feeling of floating when starting something new.

How was the recording and writing process?

All around it was a lot of fun! This album includes songs from different phases in my work and some collaborations with super cool musicians. I think this album is actually a fun blend of all the bad romance and confusion I was going through during those times. Smiles and laughter are the ultimate medicine, as the songs are written from an authentic perspective, for me, as sad or blue as they can be, my inner soul consciously (or not) will add a bright, optimistic layer, textually or musically to the piece.

What role does San Francisco and Israel play in your music?

Wow. I think it has a lot to do with who I am and I am a lot like my music. I started playing the guitar when I was a kid living in SF and I started recording my own music in Israel, but in English. These roots, the varied culture, political and state conflicts naturally made their way into some of my songs too.

Where did you find the inspiration for the songs and lyrics?

I find inspiration in everydayness, in the gap between who we think we are and what we want to be, how we see ourselves and how we see others, how we dream and and how we drink our coffee. The little things are great. So much is going on, but eventually, for me, it is all about people (and dogs and cats), passion and hope. Our family and lovers, they move us. I want to write about that.

Any plans to hit the road?

Just got back from a show in Palo Alto and Minneapolis. Now I plan to perform mainly in NY this spring and I look forward to a summer in Taiwan and a tour in Israel.

What else is happening next in Tamar Eisenman’s world?

I just finished producing an album to an amazing singer songwriter – Eric Berman. His music became a huge part in my life in the past year. His songs moved me deeply and I am so happy with his success. I’m also composing music to a fascinating documentary series, combining original songs and poems. Working with visuals and thematic music is always super exciting for me. Also, I can’t wait for spring to finally arrive, though no complains to the weather this winter, all’s sweet.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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