Caleb Eberhardt, or CE (pronounced “See”), is one half of Brooklyn based hip-hop duo Quincy Vidal. If you’re familiar with Quincy Vidal's music, you might expect CE's solo work to be something in the vein of their in-your-face, uplifting boom-bap summer anthems. You'd be wrong.
CE’s first official solo project, Songs in the Key of Solitude, is an introspective deep dive into Caleb’s own consciousness. Written in the dead of an NYC winter, “Goddamn” grapples with the loss of CE's father and a split from his longtime girlfriend. “My listeners and who I want to hear my music, they’re like my shrink. They’re my therapist," CE said. "I’d rather do that, I’d rather just put all my fucking problems in my music and let everybody hear that than like talk to one person about what I’m going through.”
Stream "Goddamn" below, then check out our Q&A with the artist.
What drove the decision to do the solo project so soon after the recent QV release?
I’m always ready to put new stuff out. I don’t like being stagnant really. There is no real reason I’m just excited about my new material and want people to hear it that’s just it.
This project sounds like a bit of a different direction then the QV stuff.
We always had our own sound when we come together. Together we always had that sort of boom bap hip-hop, a real raw New York feel. We work together so well because we take our individual influences and combine them. So when you take them apart and sort of just like... I mean, I just have a lot of influences that Le’Asha might not have and vice versa. I’m producing a lot more of my own stuff which I did do with QV early on, but with this last project we got a lot of more outside help. I just think it’s about the influences, and I have different ones when it comes to creating my own music as compared to music with QV.
Can you speak a little bit about some of those influences?
Right now, physically, I’m taking a lot of influence from Frank Ocean. A lot from Kendrick Lamar, a lot from, a little bit from Chance. It’s just like, I have music ADHD. If I hear a song, it could be like a country song and if I really enjoy it, I might find myself trying to … trying to fucking make something of my own that has that same feeling that the country song gave me. It’s a weird example because I don’t really listen to country music but like… On a specific project I’d have one song that’s really poppy, really melody driven. And then you would have something like “Goddamn” which is so heavy and so hip hop and so current and it’s, I don’t know, my influences just switch around. My listeners and who I want to hear my music, they’re like my shrink. They’re my therapist. I’d rather do that, I’d rather just put all my fucking problems in my music and let everybody hear that than talk to one person about what I’m going through. I’d never go on like social media and be like “Oh my life is so hard!” but I’ll be quick to write a song about it.
The themes for this mainly are being alone. Finding solace in solitude, and finding ways to love yourself and being okay with being by yourself and finding a way to be happy by yourself. And that’s through songs about losing someone or songs about going crazy inside your own head, inside your own thoughts. I think if there is one word to describe this project, it’s just loneliness. You know winter in New York is always interesting for me. First of all you have this shitty weather that puts you in a mood on its own. And then since I’ve graduated things have always happened in the winter that sort of make it worse; so I wrote this project during this past winter. It’s dark, it’s blue and purple, and it’s like gray in moments. It’s really just about loneliness in a big city and l trying to be happy being by yourself.
It’s weird because I’m an open person, I’m really friendly with people but when I’m closed off I’m closed off. When I put up my wall it’s there and it’s really hard to break down and the only way anybody will ever see through that wall If I want them to is through my music.
Songs in the Key of Solitude will drop this coming winter.