Esbe is a composer, producer, and vocalist from London. Her music is an eclectic blend of many influences, from her pure classical roots, but uniquely drawing on contemporary, world music and film scoring.
After graduating from the Royal Academy of Music, where she gained an LRAM and won the prestigious 'Julian Bream Prize for Guitar', Esbe performed in concerts around the UK. As a composer, she has produced and recorded a great variety of music from her North London studio, each project with its own inventive mix of styles. She is also sought after as a session singer and her vocals have been compared to such diverse artists as Lisa Gerrard (Dead Can Dance) and Emma Kirkby.
Esbe’s writing has been partly inspired by her North African and Eastern European heritage, but is also informed by her love of Early Music, in particular, John Dowland, as well as British folk, jazz and Indian classical music. This eclectic blend makes for a unique and distinctive sound.
2018 saw her first two albums released to critical acclaim, and there are two due for release in September this year. For ‘Desert Songs’ Esbe chose a selection of 8th-13th century Middle Eastern poets including the Sufi mystic poet, Rumi. The second, ‘Mystra – Songs from Byzantium’ was inspired by travels in the Greek Peloponnese and Bulgaria.
A prolific and versatile composer, Esbe has also recorded two further albums, collections of poem settings, and a song cycle, ‘Elektra’, devised as an animation film, for which she wrote the original story. She is currently working on her next album, a script for another animation project, and a tour where she will perform a programme of songs arranged for string quartet.
Five years ago, she developed the rare and debilitating condition of Musicians' Focal Dystonia. This affects just 3% of musicians, there is no cure, and she can no longer perform as a classical guitarist. Although there is a great sadness at losing the ability to play, the time she would have spent practising was used to pursue an art career alongside her studio recording. She exhibits with galleries and at art fairs around the UK, and her style is influenced by Pop Art and Art Deco.
Examples of these can be seen in the elegant line drawings she creates for the album artwork, and drawings for two stories she has just completed featuring wildlife depletion.