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EdTang: Why Not Live Till You Die?

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EdTang tells it like it is: Seize the moment because the moment is all we have. He is a folk singer with a raspy voice similar to Tom Waits. And what comes out of his gritty voice communicates the message to contemplate less and act more. A message that has been echoed for centuries -- man finds his highest and most lasting happiness in the active life. For him, folk music is the most fitting channel to capture universal truths. There is no doubt; songs resonating collective experiences are listened to infinitely. And what EdTang does with his latest EP will most likely be listened to boundlessly.

Aptly, the title of song two, "Crow Till We Croak," puts the theme of his newest release in a nutshell. However, the album's title is Good-Bye, Zen5, Sushi Dinner, which may seem a little out of the ordinary, but does have a raison d'être. If the title conjures up thoughts about farewell dinners, that's because it's all about ceremonial departures -- all the goodbyes exchanged along the journeys. And for every journey's end there is always a last supper to say goodbye.

The album's first track, "Vaya," (the Spanish word for go) is about surrender. "Vaya," tells about a trip taken by EdTang with a few of his friends to South America -- a journey that changed him. He gets to relive the experience in his song. But no matter where one travels to, there is always the return home and a final dinner before the exit. Why not seize the moment, for the moment may never come again.

This may sound very much like a philosophical idea, but philosophy is un-poetic. And EdTang's music is poetry. The album does integrate theoretical wisdom into a human context. Just like poetry, his lyrics move deeply while persuading sincerely -- since acts of living are the theme of poetry.

EdTang presents a comprehensive knowledge that most are akin to with lyrics like:

Now growing up is a piece of cake, like bubblegum and rollerskates,/ When the future becomes the present, it becomes the past/ And a lucky man might get one shot to roll the dice and give it all he's got/ But most just play it safe and say it went so fast

Poetry never bypasses love, and it hasn't bypassed this EP either. Seizing the moment is also about the mystery of the romantic journey. Songs like, "Recharge," "Beware of a Dog," and "Pualai," deals with love refueled and love returned. It's hard to say which songs outshine others, lyrically, and musically they are -- in their own right -- seizing a moment.

EdTang's EP, Goodbye, Zen5, Sushi Dinner, can be purchased and streamed on BandCamp.