“What would our lives be like without a soundtrack?” Erland poses profound questions in life and in lyrics, paired with a positive attitude reflective of his homesteads San Francisco, Oregon, Dana Point and now Santa Barbara. “Music is the celebration of all the things in life that make us most human -- the joy, the pain, the love.” Singing along to his parents record collection helped develop his voice at a young age. Family dinners had lit candles and music playing with regulars in the rotation such as Billie Holiday, Chet Baker and Bach engraving music deeper into Erland’s DNA. Away from the dinner table was no different, “I remember being so excited to take road trips because it meant my brother and sister and I would get to listen to the mix tapes we had put together for the drive.”
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Growing up in a creative family may explain Erland’s musical proclivity. His family’s photography has been contributed to past album covers and now their videography skills are helping bring Erland’s music videos to life. Erland now has children of his own, inspiring his songwriting and music career, “My family drives me to be the best I can possibly be in both life and music, they are a constant source of inspiration.” After moving with his wife and children from Dana Point to Santa Barbara, Erland built his guitar teaching business from the ground up teaching kids and adults to play music and follow their passion. “I eventually landed a gig working at a music store. I was sweeping the floors, breaking down boxes and changing guitar strings for close to minimum wage. They gave lessons there as well so I put my name down as a substitute for teachers that had to leave town or couldn't come in. Word eventually got around that I was a good guitar teacher and I started getting calls to do private in-home lessons.”
Erland aims for his songs to have different meaning to different people. Along with drawing inspiration from family to breath life into his lyrics, he also taps his environment. “The magnets in the ocean pull lyrics out of me, I love to put songs together while I surf.” Santa Barbara is an inspired city with appreciation for art and music. Hundreds of songs written and hundreds of gigs later Erland’s first full length album On Our Side is recorded thanks to a Santa Barbara private investment and Erland’s band, which includes Nate Keezer on drum and percussion, Marko Srdanov on keys and guitar, and Mike Mooneyham on bass. This has motivated him to complete a crowd-funded Pledge Music campaign for the mastering, printing and marketing of the album.
On Our Side is produced by Andrew McMahon of Jack's Mannequin, who worked fluidly with Erland to craft rich soundscapes with intricate percussion and ethereal keyboard arrangements. Co-producer Bear Erickson contributes a wide variety of tasteful instrumentation, furthering the album's melodic arrangements with grace. Erland calls his sound “Jungle Folk” and credits influencers such as The Beatles (John Lennon in particular), Bob Dylan, James Taylor, Neil Young and the original Jungle Funk connoisseur, Paul Simon. Erland’s roots also include Tupac, Notorious B.I.G., Bon Iver, Ray Lamontagne, Johnny Cash and Cat Stevens to name a few.