Wires, Strings & Other Things - Meet Ed!

Ed Devane plays electronic instruments in Wires, Strings & Other Things. Ed can usually be found in a corner, building unusual electronic instruments, tinkering with his own world of sound. We asked Ed to answer some questions about himself and his musical instrument. Read on to find out more!

Q: Ed, how would you describe the sound of your electronic instruments?

A: Multifaceted, spatial, ineffable… (basically indescribably awesome!)

Q: If your instrument was an animal, what would it be?

A: A slightly feral cat: friendly sometimes, ready to pounce with the claws out always.

Q: If your instrument was a Marvel character, what would it be?

A: Mystique - capable of morphing from one thing to another.

Q: What age were you when you started playing your instrument?

A: I was around 17 when I first started playing a modified guitar, like the zither I now use.

Q: Did you have lessons, or where did you learn to play?

A: I had guitar lessons for 2 years, but a large part of my education was self-directed,

with a course in music technology really solidifying my knowledge.

Q: What do you like most about your instrument?

A: That my instrument is not just one thing, it is whatever I can imagine, build and learn

to play.

Q: What’s the thing you find most annoying about your instrument?

A: My sometimes inability to play it the way I want, or features I didn’t include that

I need to put into the next revision.

Q: What inspired you to play your instrument?

A: My instrument is one I invented, and I did so in order to have access to sounds that

other music producers did not.

Q: Does your instrument have a pet name?

A: Yes - Wither Zither!

Q: Do you play any other musical instruments?

A: Yes, all the instruments I have invented, although the computer is my main

instrument after the zither.

Q: What is your earliest musical memory?

A: Hearing the loud din of a mid-1980’s Slane concert coming down the Boyne valley to

my then home.

Q: How much time to you spend practising?

A: Of actually playing, very little. Of designing and building instruments, electronic

circuits and code that are used in making music, probably around 30 hours on

average.

Q: What is the most embarrassing thing that ever happened to you on stage?!

A: During a gig I was walking through the audience with a battery-powered speaker, which was slung over my shoulder on a guitar strap. The strap came off, the speaker fell, along with all the batteries, totally ruining my performance.

Q: Outside of music, name one thing that you are really excellent at and one thing that you are really rubbish at!

A: I’d like to think I’m pretty good at designing things and problem solving. I am rubbish

at any sport I have tried.

Q: Have you ever performed for anyone really famous?

A: I think film director Neil Jordan and actor Aidan Gillen are the most well known

people I’ve knowingly played to.

Q: What groups do you perform with and what sort of music do you usually play?

A: Currently I don’t perform with any groups, but when I do, it is generally improvised

abstract music. I make techno and electro under my own name also.

Q: What’s the coolest place you’ve performed in?

A: A former Stasi (Soviet-era East German secret police) interrogation centre in Berlin,

and my geodesic dome.

Still curious to know more about Ed? 

Have a look at some of the electronic instruments he’s built on his website: www.eddevane.com

Watch the video below where Ed will teach you how to make your own musical instruments from different types of tubes that you might find at home:

Ed will be performing in Wires, Stings & Other Things, The Ark and Music Network’s new music show for ages 6+ composed by Brian Irvine and directed by Wouter Van Looy. Wires, Strings & Other Things will be at The Ark and on tour nationwide from 5 February – 3 April 2022. Click here to find out more and to book.