Recently we where visited by one of our old graduates, Ernie B St Clair. Ernie studied here at the Cape Audio College 11 years ago and has enjoyed quite a lot of success as an artist and producer. It seems that Ernie is doing quite well for himself, with a SAMA nomination last year and a tour coming very soon, it’s clear that there are a lot of opportunities out there for talented young artists. We had a few minutes to catch up and have a chat about what Ernie has been up to and where his career has taken him now, 11 years later.
Great seeing you too pal, specially back at C.A.C
Q: Hey man, nice to have you back here. It’s been a few years since you popped in an said hi. Have you released your album yet? What’s it called, and where can I buy it?
A: Nice to be back and see old faces ,the pleasure is all mine. It’s been 11 years since I studied at C.A.C and since then I’ve starred in the Coca-Cola Pop star competition in SA and was a top ten finalist, I was then Signed by Virgin/EMI and later formed a band called Afro-z that had many chart topping hits. In 2005 we parted to start our Solo careers and in Later 2006 started my studio production company Pipeline Records cc and Released my current SAMA nominated Album in 2011 called `I Am Universal `. Its selling on Kalahari.net for R100 and the sweetest thing is it gets delivered to your doorstep that’s including postage.
Q: How long did it take to put together? And how is the album doing?
A: It took me two years to complete in my plum stead home studio, I’m selling well at gigs, as we all know retail is not as good as selling at your gigs, because the record industry is changing. Never the less it gives artists more control over the product.
I’m currently starting my Western Cape School Tour that will be very good for the BRAND.
Q: Where did you record it? Who was involved in the production.
A: Yeah like I said it was at my studio that a built 5 years ago, was exciting with this project I really stepped my game up, improved production and sonic quality .
Q: Are you still writing all the tracks yourself?
A: I do write all my music and collaborate with other writers too, I love that, because all the greats have done that in the past.
Q: I remember you getting to the finals in the Coca-Cola pop stars show a few years back. Did that help or hinder your career?
A: Being in pop stars most definitely helped me to get signed, I had the privilege to perform with the great Brenda Fassie, Mandoza, Ernie Smith, Danny K and Loyiso to name but a few.
I’ve learned more as working with all these artist made my ears better too, as Ray used to say so, I grew better as an engineer and a producer.
Q: You where nominated for a SAMA award last year. Tell us the story? Did you attend the ceremony?
A: This was a experience of a life time, especially that last year marked my 10th year in the industry as an recording artist. I was humbled that they acknowledged my album as well as my Label Pipeline Records. I did attend the ceremony and it was Grand. It was one of the best ceremony’s ever. The stage, lighting, artists and networking were great.
Q: What are your plans for the future? Are you working on any new production’s?
A: I’ve got plans to tour SA, the rest of Africa and The States soon, as we are making moves with prominent brands overseas already. I’m starting production on my DELUXE Edition of my Album.
I’ll Send u a link to the FREE download of my new single soon.
Q: You where a student at the cape audio college quite a few years ago. Does what you learned here still help you when working in the studio?
A: Of course, it’s strange that everything I learned then comes back to comes back when you grow working with other people, most definitely the industry things like rights originations that I knew of helped me too.
Q: What is the most important lesson the Cape Audio College taught you?
A: To listen to Pink Floyd too…… lol (As Rae Director of Cape Audio Always said). Yeah I actually respected songs like “Money” they made me listen and add FX to my songs too like the actual money falling and cash registers that they added in that songs as well as the 7/4 time signature that they used made me think differently. Even though the music I do is more Urban I’ve definitely learned to be an eclectic listener as a Singer /Songwriter/Engineer. For any one that doesn’t know that song as an engineer go YouTube it
Q: Where can we catch a show?
Easter Mon 9 April 2012 I’m at the V.& A Waterfront Amphitheatre WOULD LOVE TO SEE EVERBODY there, good thing is its FREE !
Thank you all, its been a pleasure. Blessings
Please see my social media links below!
Pipeline Records skype: ernie.b.st.clair