If you’re unfamiliar with the name Eric Ash, you might be aware of the Milwaukee multi-instrumentalist’s output in a previous project called Alta, his current efforts as the violinist in Social Caterpillar, or maybe from being your child’s music teacher in his day job as an educator. In addition to that varied body of work, Ash also writes and records solo songs he releases under his own name.
Ash, who has played violin since he was five years old and started composing original songs in grade school, started getting more serious about songwriting after graduating college. With the help of his friend Ryan Gehrig, he recorded a batch of songs that would make up his first solo album, 2017’s In/Out/Side. In the years that followed, Ash would write new material whenever inspiration struck and his schedule with other projects permitted. Some of those homespun solo songs will find a place on Ash’s soon-to-be-released All I Can See EP.
The batch of five songs, which is slated to be released before the end of 2021, finds the project’s namesake playing a wide range of instruments. In the release, Ash played guitar, he sang, and he produced all of the electronic drums, bass, and keyboards using Ableton. Ironically, the one instrument he doesn’t play on the EP is violin. Paul Sekulski recorded all the violin parts. You can hear all those instrumental touches on “All I Can See,” the EP’s title track and a gateway into Ash’s emotions.
Inspired by a particularly difficult day of teaching, the soft and straightforward song starts on a discouraging note, but takes a hopeful turn as strings and keys swell to bolster the optimistic lyrics. Before the EP anticipated release in December, you can listen to Eric Ash’s “All I Can See” below.