Local Music Monday: Severn Edmondson

Oct 10, 2016

After a short break DeBraun returns to the airwaves with this profile of Severn Edmondson of the group Onward Pilgrim.

Severn Edmondson
Credit photo provided

Severn Edmondson is a multi-instrumentalist and native of Frankfort who moved to Lexington in 2007. He was drawn to the piano at a young age. Edmondson says his moment of self-realization as a musician came after his dad got him piano lessons.

“I thought I wanted to take piano lessons and then once my dad had to continuously hunt me down and drag me to the piano lessons, I realized I didn’t wanna do anything structured like that, so he pretty much told me after I finished the first three books, I could quit and I just already had developed an ear at that point and I would just go to the lesson, I’d learn the piece of music at that lesson, have to have it memorized by the next one and I would just show up and be able to play it by ear at the next lesson, so, made it through those three books in about a year.”

Edmondson is known around Lexington by many musicians for his ability to play a wide range of instruments in many styles. He has played many diverse groups such as The Fanged Robot, Oh My Me, Onward Pilgrim, The Ford Theatre Reunion and Bear Medicine. He says, as a side man, what draws him most to playing music with others, is the people.

“One aspect of it is, staying busy and creating, and then the other aspect of it is really being a fan of the person that you’re working with and really believing in them and trying to learn from them what you can and get more experience, just leveling up like it’s Baldur's Gate or Final Fantasy or something like that, so every little bit that I do makes me a better musician, a better person, it’s all about the music really, so as long as I’m a big fan of the music and the person, I’m gonna be fully interested.”

Recording sessions are also another outlet for Edmondson. His approach to session work is something he describes from his role as a drummer.

“With drummers there’s a lot of things that feel good, that aren’t good for the song, you’re like, ‘man I wanna play this beat over top of that, I got this drum fill, it’s killer, I learned it last night, I wanna use that’ and then you go to put it in the song and it takes all the focus of the song, so for me it’s all about the structure of the song and the lyrics and not getting in the way of that.”

Severn Edmondson performs with Onward Pilgrim, Terrified Riders, and Driftwood Gypsy. More information about Edmondson and his projects can be found on facebook.