By Alleah Boisvert
Since November, EGO Magazine has been a platform for Edmonton artists to share their talent.
EGO, which stands for “Edmonton Goes Off”, helps artists connect in an online world.
Tom Tunski, the creative director of EGO, teamed up with hosts of NR92’s radio show Urban Zoo Elijah O’Donnell and David Madawo to keep Edmontonians in the loop on the local music scene.
Tunski spoke on the importance of artists continuing to gain a fan base through virtual performances.
“We’re all about giving them those resources and seeing what they do with it – and then they go off,” said Tunski.
EGO releases an issue every week featuring different artists doing interviews and live performances. They use Instagram to create an online magazine with energetic “90’s kinetic” photos. The content is filmed in a white room that focuses on the artist.
“The whole idea behind the white studio is the artist projecting themselves onto that. They’re standing out against the background and you have nothing else to look at, so you just gotta look at them,” said Tunski.
EGO uses the white room as the base and has the artist add something to help individualize them. In EGO’s latest issue, Edmonton band Nu Engineers wore space like outfits to perform their jazzy improv beats.
“It’s good for the artists because [people] can just click on their profile and then follow them if they dig what they do, or they can go in their bio and download their music,” said Tunski.
“With the independent side of art right now, I think it’s rough because [artists] have to fight through whatever they’re going through,” said Tunski.
Fortunately, Edmonton artists are resilient.
“I like the passion that people have. Especially in our interviews, they want to represent our city and show people that you can make it out here doing art,” said Tunski. “EGO’s goal is to unite these people and show them that there’s others in the city doing cool stuff.”
Local artists spend lots of time working on projects in the cold winters to help keep them happy. Typically, summer is the time of year where the “Festival City” comes to life, but the future is unclear.
In the meantime, locals can support artists by rallying for them online through projects like Edmonton Goes Off.
Tunski says it’s vital to keep supporting artists so that Edmonton can keep up its vibrant music scene.
“Social media is so easy to share, and it’s able to connect our audience right to our artists,” said Tunski.
Once it is safe for the city’s local artists to perform like they’re used to, it is a given that Edmonton will indeed go off.