Who is Edi Callier?
| ˈɛdi/•/cal’yA |
"I remember in February of 2017, I laid unmoving in a hospital bed being told that for the rest of my life, staying alive would be like staying ahead of a bear running behind me from that point forward.
I believe we're given a few moments in each of our journeys on this earth to make a choice: choose to accept our fate as it's told to us and as we believe it to be... or to reach out and grab the reigns of our fate to take control of our destinies. In that moment, I told myself that as soon as I left that hospital, I'd work harder than I ever had before. I'd achieve all of the goals I'd set out for myself and no matter what, I wouldn't let anything stand in the way. I told myself to always keep pushing because no matter what it looks like, over the horizon #GreaterisComing."
- Edi Callier
"I believe we're
given a few moments
in each of our journeys on this
earth to make a choice: choose to accept our fate as it's told to us and as we believe it to be... or to reach out and grab the reigns of our fate to take control of our destinies."
- Edi Callier
most of my early
years writing songs
and practicing on all of the instruments in the studio
at home. When my parents separated, I pretty much dedicated every bit of my
life to music to escape
from the real world."
- Edi Callier
Edi Callier (or “Mr. Chocolate Smiles” as he’s
affectionately known by his “EdiNation” fan base) is
a recording artist based in Los Angeles, California.
Originally from Portland, Oregon, the singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer, and entertainer was born to Ricky Callier (composer, record producer, educator, musician, former musical director for the DeBarge family, ordained minister) and Joan Callier (singer, visual artist, also an ordained minister). He began his musical tutelage early at home and In the early 2000’s,
the family relocated to Covington, GA, a small town in the outskirts of Atlanta. There, Edi spent his days in the studio honing his craft to the musings of artists
such as Earth, Wind, and Fire, Prince, Michael Jackson, Aerosmith, Stevie Wonder
and Kim Burrell.
"I spent most of my early years writing songs and practicing on all of the instruments in the studio and when my parents separated, I pretty much dedicated every bit of my life to music as a way of escaping the real world."
- Edi Callier
In 2012, he graduated from Newton High School, Covington, GA and briefly attended Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA as a Pro Music major in 2015. Upon his return to Georgia shortly thereafter, he began his journey writing, producing, and playing for artists around the Atlanta area. In 2016, he ventured to the city to don the stage name "Edi" as he began recording and performing new original music and began rapidly making a name in the Atlanta music scene as an artist with his genre-transcending, high-energy and commanding stage
presence, distinguishably smooth yet passionate vocals,
extraordinary musicianship, his signature stage decor, and his faithful companion “Esmerelda” (the famous scarf). In his time performing, he met a drummer named Claudius "Stixx Loredo" Angol and together they formed the band "Edi and the eXperience."
"By the beginning of 2017, Claud and I had become closer than brothers musically and in life. We hit all of the stages that were presented to us and together, we'd created a crazy buzz for ourselves in Atlanta and give out a ton of promo CDs.
Then, when things started to really pick up that February, I got sick and was admitted to the hospital for a week without food or drink. Around that same time, a bunch of my friends' careers had begun to catch some insane fire but I was stuck laying in a hospital bed being told that from that point forward, my entire life would have to change and staying healthy and alive would be like staying ahead of a bear chasing me down every day.
As a laid thinking about where I'd come from and where I wanted to go, I made the decision that as soon as I got out of that hospital, I'd spend everyday working towards becoming the man, artist, and influence I always wanted to be. No more half stepping, no more 'almosts'."
Upon being released from the hospital, he trained relentlessly through muscle pains and the inability to walk or see to get back to show-rediness. As he began to regain his strength, he re-entered the Atlanta music scene and later that year, he organized an official return to the stage in the form of a release concert that went on to be moved outside of the venue due to an exceeded capacity.
His diligence captured the eyes and ears of artists and talent buyers across the nation and he went on to be seen opening for Grammy® Award-winning artist Tank, Gary “Lil G” Jenkins of Silk, as a headliner for the official Prince tribute concert in Centennial Olympic Park with Janet Jackson’s drummer Lil’ John Roberts, as headliner for Atlanta festivals such as the Collard Greens
Music Festival, Sweet Auburn Music Festival, Taste of Soul Music Festival Atlanta, as a performer on the Apollo Theater stage, and on the first season of the
FOX Television show, The Four.
"I remember that night I got the life-altering phone call from FOX. I was told that they were developing a new television series involving Diddy, DJ Khaled, Meghan Trainor, Charlie Walk, and Fergie and they wanted me to be a part of their inaugural season. I graciously accepted and after a few meetings, I was on my way to California to shoot the first season.
After months of preparation, filming, and getting the chance to hang out with some of the most talented young people I'd ever met (Fun Fact: Zhavia was my next door neighbor at the hotel), we were finally ready for me to perform my set on the show at the top of 2018.
On my way up to the stage, one of the producers whispered in my ear, "When you get up there and they ask you who you'd like to challenge, don't mention anyone by name and just tell everyone how much you love what they do."
So, I walked up on the stage to a roaring crowd, was greeted by the panelists, and proceeded to compliment the contestants as instructed. Afterwards, I performed my set and when I finished, I was told that I was too nice and was told by Diddy to "get mad". Given four "no's", I was sent home with the knowledge that I still was returning home to what was going to be a huge deal for a lot of people, regardless of the results."
In January of 2018, episode 4 of The Four aired with Edi Callier as a contestant. he show aired and I was greeted with a barrage of love and support from people around the world. I went on Good Day Atlanta to talk about my experience and had a couple of local meet & greets but was told by my team at the time to "slow down" and "take some time to relax". I spent most of that year waiting for things to get moving and by the end of the year, that team and I had parted ways.
As 2019 began, I began to make plans to re-record my project live (the project files for the music I'd recorded in 2016 were lost and I'd never officially released the music). In April, I put together a live recording/concert with my new, reformed, full 13-piece band, the.Collective. I'd caught the attention of some potential management and soon after the concert, I began talks with an interested entertainment company based in Atlanta that managed some artists that I admired. As time progressed, my calendar started to fill up and I was back on track to build on the name I'd made for myself in the city.
Shows were flowing in, new content was on the horizon, and on one beautiful morning, I got a phone call from Claudius' fiancee's phone number. Excitedly, I answered but noticed quickly that something was wrong. It wasn't her but it was her mother sobbing on the phone and telling me to have a seat. She then let me know that my brother had passed away that morning. In shock, I sat my phone down, walked to my room, and closed the door.
In light of the situation, the entertainment company that had taken notice in April reached out to me to sign with them so that they'd be able to continue working on my behalf as I was given time to grieve. Soon after, I realized that I'd once again entered into an agreement with a team that wanted me to "slow down" and not produce content. Over the course of the next few months, I did a few pop-up sets at festivals and continued working on my project (yet to be released) but without Claud around to help me through the hard times and without a stage to leave my troubles on, I found myself sinking into a deep depression. By November, I'd also lost my grandfather, two of my other close friends, and I was felt myself drifting farther and farther away from what my remedy for hard times had been throughout the my life: music. I took some time to re-evaluate my life, my career, and my desires and by the end of the year, I'd made a new plan for 2020.
As the new decade began, I ended my agreement with the entertainment company, finished working on some new music, rebranded my website and social media, began planning a move to Los Angeles, and now, I'm ready to see where the rest of this journey takes me and how this story continues to unfold.
He rapidly made a name for himself and built his "#EdiNation" fan base through his genre-bending Pop/Soul music, commanding stage presence, extraordinary musicianship, and his distinguishably smooth yet passionate vocals.
He’s been seen on social media as @officiallyedi, as an opener for Grammy® Award-winning artist Tank, Gary “Lil G” Jenkins of Silk, as a co-headliner for the 2017 Prince tribute concert in Centennial Olympic Park with Janet Jackson’s drummer Lil’ John Roberts, a headliner for the Collard Greens Music Festival (2017-2019), Sweet Auburn Music Festival (2017-2019), Taste of Soul Music Festival Atlanta (2019), on the Apollo Theater stage and on the first season of the FOX Television show,
Here, you'll find the music behind the man.
"II made the decision that
as soon as I got out of that hospital, I'd spend everyday working towards becoming the man, artist, and influence I always wanted to be.
No more half stepping,
no more 'almosts'.
- Edi Callier