Meet Top DJ/Producer and Hip-Hop Collaborator
Toronto native Eva Shaw began writing music and DJing as a teenager, which eventually grew into a full-time job when she made the move to New York City for school. Quickly expanding all over North America, she began performing on the main stage at music festivals such as Ultra, as well as landing residencies at premier nightclubs Hakkasan and Omnia Las Vegas. Continuing the traction, Eva’s first single release “Charizma” was signed by Calvin Harris’ Fly Eye.
Experimenting with different styles and genres, Shaw released her first major-label release on Sony Records, “Rise n Shine” featuring grammy-winning writer Poo Bear. As she turned her focus on original, vocal-based music, she gained attention of the mainstream market and established herself as a multi-genre music producer, DJ and label owner known for her collaborations with artists such as Shaggy, Showtek, Kofi, Wyclef Jean, Rihanna, Ludacris, Fifth Harmony, David Guetta and many more.
Her consistent releases have been regularly supported by Spotify and Apple Music editorial playlists, have gained support from hip hop-based outlets such as Complex and Lyrical Lemonade, and have landed Shaw a spot as a Billboard Dance #1 charting artist with hundreds of millions of streams. 2021 marked a huge year for Eva with the release of HYPE HOP 001 and HYPE HOP 002, as well as a slew of singles via her label imprint Mad Fatti. As she continues to expand her own artist career, the future looks bright for this ever-evolving, unique artist.
Returning to the release radar with the fourth single from her upcoming debut album, multifaceted talent Eva Shaw presents “EASTERISLAND” featuring Pressa and Thouxanbanfauni. Serving as another glimpse into the newfound musical direction behind ‘SOLO,’ the latest directly follows her recently released collaboration with Jazz Cartier and Kris The $pirit on “Outside,” as well as her genre-breaking hit “Juice” featuring Dillanponders. The new single is a direct lead up to Shaw’s forthcoming inaugural LP, which is slated for release June 17th. “EASTERISLAND” is now available across all streaming platforms via Shaw’s imprint Mad Fatti and also features an accompanying music video.
“EASTERISLAND” serves as a unique and rhythmic EDM infused hip hop record with an edge. Featuring acid 303 house basslines and pulsating percussive elements with vocal chops, the offering immediately takes listeners into a propulsive soundscape that characterizes her new and unique approach to hip hop. With Pressa and Thouxanbanfauni’s effortless lyricism and flow taking over, the offering creates an undeniable groove from start-to-finish.
The single pivots at the halfway point, giving nod to the deep-seated Southern chopped and screwed sound, showcasing Eva Shaw’s diverse production abilities with forward-thinking beats and stylistic flexibility. With each artist unapologetically displaying their respective life experiences in a clever and honest way, “EASTERISLAND” creates an irresistible precedent for what’s to come in Shaw’s upcoming studio album.
Meet and Get To Know Eva Shaw
Kulture Vulturez: What initially drew your interest in music and later motivated you to start producing and creating your own music?
Eva Shaw: Since I was born I knew I wanted to be a performer. I was writing songs when I was like 6 years old – always dressing up and dancing around. I really tried to develop my singing abilities. I even took dance, piano, guitar – I kept trying to find my place in music. I never actually thought about being a music producer or a DJ until I was a teenager, and even then I didn’t think it would be my actual job.
Once I started going out and seeing DJs performing and listening to producers like Deadmau5 I was like – woah – I found my thing. Being able to play your own music in front of crowds like that, or hearing it on the radio – is the coolest thing ever. Even just seeing people streaming your music and getting feedback about your own creation is so inspiring. Aside from that it’s just a great outlet. I am constantly creating things, whether it’s a painting, sculpture, music piece or video shoot – I just need to express myself constantly.
Kulture Vulturez: What were your first thoughts following your transition into becoming a full-time professional DJ? Was there a learning curve and any difficulties you had to overcome?
Eva Shaw: I feel like it happened so fast. I moved to New York and was going to theatre school and modeling at the same time. I started DJing and making music for fun. Once I started doing some gigs it just spiraled and I kept doing more and more. I met more people, got more offers and started building this whole music producer career. It definitely happened quickly. I felt I was still learning so much about production and how I wanted to present myself as an artist.
In some ways I feel certain things did happen too fast because I didn’t feel ready when certain opportunities arose. That’s probably why I took a step back a couple of years ago and decided to make my own platform to release music so that I could take time to cultivate my direction instead of following the lead of a label or manager.
“MIDNIGHT STRANGERS” – Eva Shaw, THOUXANBANFAUNI & DB Bantino
Kulture Vulturez: Being multitalented, what do you enjoy the most or find that comes the most natural between DJing, songwriting, and producing/beat making?
Eva Shaw: When I make music, I visualize a music video and cover art. Sometimes that inspires me to write lyrics as well, so the process of what comes quickly or naturally is always different. I haven’t been DJing since the pandemic yet and I do miss it. It’s a way to perform my music and present myself on stage live, but I can also present myself through videos and even photos, or just releasing a song.
I DJed so much in the beginning of my career that I’m stepping back and developing my production and videos and overall artistic direction so I have been ok with DJing less. I think it all just depends on what’s needed in my career at the time and also my mood. Sometimes I feel more introverted and want to write something alone. Other times I wish I was on tour again performing in front of a zillion people.
Both DJing and music production were really hard for me in the beginning. Making music is often challenging for me to get it where I want it and I can be pretty slow when it comes to finishing songs. You wouldn’t guess it by how many releases I have lol. When I learned how to DJ I was actually beat matching with CDs and that was tough to get the hang of at first, but I definitely got it pretty fast.
I also have a large musical knowledge and I think I naturally can select songs well. I’ve done 9 hour DJ sets with no issues or stress on what to play – so that probably comes pretty naturally to me. I definitely think my ear for DJing has helped my productions as well. I used to write a lot of poems as a kid too, so I think words, lyrics and melodies come fairly easily to me. I would call myself an idea person. I constantly have ideas for just about everything and anything at all times.
Kulture Vulturez: Having your hands in many aspects of the music industry, what advice would you give to someone just getting their start in the music business?
Eva Shaw: The most important thing is to be yourself and do what you love, regardless of what people say and how well it performs. This is crucial to finding your authentic self. Unique artists tend to take longer to get noticed I think , but once they do it will be more fulfilling and special if you’re being yourself. And don’t underestimate how much work goes into it. It needs to be your life.
“CALABASAS” – Eva Shaw & BTK Villeion [OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO]
Kulture Vulturez: Releasing numerous singles over the years, what inspires you the most when starting the process of making a song or coming up with an idea for a song?
Eva Shaw: Sometimes inspiration comes from a particular vocalist I want to work with. I will make something that I picture them jumping on and that makes me excited. Other times it’s a general mood I’m in. Sometimes I just want to make a banger and other times I want it to be more deep. Other times it’s literally because I can imagine a type of song on stage or performed in a certain way and then I want to make it immediately. I’m a huge fan of Mo Mamba by Sheck Wes – it’s one of the most genius songs out there.
I love anthemic tracks like that because it works on all stages. So sometimes I hear a track like that and then am inspired to make my own version. Inspiration can even come from watching a movie or seeing some visual or performance art someone else has done and then I get another idea for my own work. Just the other day when I saw the Balenciaga runway show I immediately wanted to make a dark, G-house beat. I was so excited at the thought of this beat in my head being played on the runway. I am constantly inspired by almost everything in the world and I never really know where it’s going to come from. I just stay open, sensitive and aware.
Kulture Vulturez: Can you breakdown your latest single “EASTERISLAND”? The development and what led to the concept.
Eva Shaw: This is probably the most complicated track I’ve ever done. It started as a demo I recorded with Pressa in Toronto before the pandemic. I wasn’t totally happy with it so I changed the beat a few times. Pressa was not feeling any of the versions. We just shelved it while I worked on my album. Then one day, I had an idea for a new direction for it. I really felt we nailed it and Pressa’s team was down for it.
Everything was on the right track (after like a year and a half) and then Pressa said he didn’t like his vocals anymore (#producerlife). He recorded a new vocal but it didn’t have a hook I was happy with. We literally just kept changing the music and the vocals over and over again – I honestly didn’t think it was ever going to get to a place we were happy with. I was working on another record with Thouxanbanfauni and he had written this hook about Easter Island and one day I just thought, “why don’t I mash Fauni’s hook with Pressa’s other vocals and make ANOTHER new beat?” I don’t even know how this worked but it finally just made sense and literally everyone was super excited for it.
“Hennessy” – Eva Shaw, Yung Tory & BTK Villeion [OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO]
Kulture Vulturez: How excited are you for the release of your debut album SOLO? How long has it been in the making and what can fans expect from it?
Eva Shaw: I started this project in July 2020 after I recovered from the original covid strain. I was OUT for months, just totally exhausted and scared. I remember when I started feeling better and was back in the studio with this new energy and just thought – this is the time I need to make an album. I didn’t plan on it being such a large project or taking almost 2 years to drop but it worked out as it was supposed to. I learned a lot not just making the actual songs themselves but also negotiating with people and learning how to run my label, and how to get people to support my totally independent project.
I don’t think people realize how much work goes into an album as a producer, especially when you also run your own label. I am relieved, nervous, excited and proud to drop this project and I really hope people dig it. It’s a wild journey that travels through genres, moods and styles. I made this project in order to present my authentic self and I see it as just the start of my career as I explore what my “go-to” sound might be. At this point I just have to let it go, and let the listeners decide what they think.
Download and Stream Eva Shaw’s Latest Album, Available Now: Eva Shaw – SOLO
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