George Ezra

June 7, 1993
  • George Ezra grew up in Hertford in England, raised by teacher parents. Ezra told The Independent that was planning on following in his mother and father's footsteps until he started playing bass when he was 13 (because he "wasn't any good at sport") and his friend was already learning the drums.
  • At 16, Ezra chose to do a B-tech in music, then went on to further study at BIMM (British and Irish Modern Music Institute) in Bristol.
  • Ezra croons with a bass-baritone voice, but initially he struggled with his singing. "I couldn't hit a note," he told Q magazine. His light bulb moment came as a result of reading the sleeve notes to a Lead Belly record where listeners were warned that the singer's thunderous voice was so powerful it might terrorise neighbours. "I thought, 'that's cool," Ezra said. "I tried singing with a deep voice and it worked. There was no shouting back down, but unbelievably, nobody ever complained."
  • A 2011 YouTube recording of an acoustic demo, "Angry Hill", earned Ezra a major label deal with Columbia. He signed it 12 days after his 19th birthday.
  • Ezra went inter-railing through Europe gathering lyrical ideas for his debut album. "I was 19, I hadn't traveled at all, I went to nine different cities by myself, with just a notebook and a guitar, writing down everything I saw, even if it seemed mundane, I just filled pages, pages, pages," he told The Daily Telegraph. "Because one thing I knew was that I didn't want to write an album of small songs about my home town. I needed to get out in the world."
  • Don't expect to see any dance moves from Ezra at his gigs. "I'm not very good at dancing," he told MTV News. "Yeah, dad dancing is kind of my go-to. You've got to be drunken enough a.) for me to do it and b.) to watch it."
  • Though Ezra cites blues and folk artists from the last century such as Lead Belly and Howlin Wolf as major influences, his sound isn't retro. "When I write, the structure is naturally quite bluesy," he told Billboard magazine, "and so you try and bring some contemporary things in the production side of things, because I didn't want it to sound throwback. You don't want it to be too of-the-moment, though, either."

    "You don't want to start writing songs about how your Twitter followers are going up, because one day Twitter won't exist and you'll feel like an idiot," Ezra added. "So I was keen to try and make sure that, production-wise as well, it wasn't too current. It's kind of a balancing act, you know?"
  • George Ezra started his musical career in a Wheatus tribute band, singing the female parts. He admitted to The Sun: "I used to sing the girls part on the song 'Teenage Dirtbag.'"

    "What's worse is that I used to dress up as well," he added. "I used to take my sister's eyeliner and wear her skinny jeans. It's slightly embarrassing, really."
  • Ezra has an inch-long scar on his forehead. The singer got it when he was a student at the BIMM Institute in Bristol and he drunkenly walked into a wall.
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