M.E. Baird (Matthew Ede Baird) is an acclaimed singer-songwriter and visual artist. He was born and raised on the Mornington Peninsula about an hour south of Melbourne. M.E. Baird has lived in many places, each a unique chapter in life and experience. He currently calls the historic township of Bangalow, NSW Australia home. M.E. Baird hails from a long lineage of poets, writers, artists, musicians, performers, tinkerers and travellers. Therefore, storytelling and performing are not only in his namesake 'Bard' but literally in his DNA.
[MUSIC & SONGWRITING]
M.E. Baird's songwriting draws upon lived experiences most of which, are well beyond the ordinary. Being also a visual artist, avid book reader and film lover there is no surprise that M.E. Baird brings a visually rich quality to his songs transforming each one into cinematic vignettes full of drama, humility and emotion. His live performances have been described as nothing short of compelling with his lush sonic minimalism lamenting vocal style and singular stage presence. His most recent offering entitled TIME (2019) has already received 4-star reviews and global recognition. Over his two-decade career, M.E. Baird has written, recorded and co-produced five full-length albums, various Ep's. He has also contributed tracks to film and television productions and has composed original music for various film and screen-based projects.
M.E. Baird's music career began in the early '90s as part of the inner Melbourne, folk, rock and grunge scene. During this period he wrote and recorded one album and an Ep with his then folk-rock trio Zen For Head while with Blah, Blah, Blah records as well as playing the guitar on other peoples recordings.
However, from 1999 - 2008, M.E. Baird dispanded music to travel and pursue a career in art and design including teaching at various universities and art schools. However, he eventually saw the light and returned to his true love of songwriting under the musical moniker of Lionel Lee releasing 'Vexed Intentions' (2008) followed by his acclaimed folk/pop offering Mysteries of the heart; Vagaries of the mind (2010). The album was runner up as best folk album by the AGE, EG.
The release of his first truly solo album under his own name (albeit just his initials) entitled Fall (2014) hailed in a new beginning for M.E. Baird and confirmed his presence as an outstanding songwriter, musician and performer. Fall represented a period of great loss and hardship for M.E Baird. Leading up to the writing and recording of Fall he was to lose his Nephew who was like a brother and the victim of a brutal murder. A short time after he was to lose his mother too early-onset Alzheimer’s and cancer. More loss was to come when not long after the recording was completed on the album he was to endure the deaths of his Sister and Father in quick succession. The losses coupled with years of struggling with depression and anxiety eventually took a toll on M.E. Baird. This meant the release of Fall would have to be put on hold, perhaps indefinitely. However, against all odds Fall was formally released in August 2016 two years after its recording. Overall, Fall has been recognised as a fine testament to M.E. Baird's skills as a solo musician, songwriter, performer and the enduring commitment he has to his ‘art’.
Music is M.E. Baird's first true love, however, he has always had a passion for art and specifically drawing from a very young age. More recently a symbiotic relationship has developed between his artwork and songwriting, whereby one informs, inspires and helps to resolve the other. M.E. Baird's primarily works with graphite and ink on paper and utilises a painstaking and laborious process that can see some larger pieces taking weeks to complete. This process of making art for M.E. Baird is a great respite from the rigours of touring...and life. M.E. Baird initially studied fine arts at Frankston Technical College and later Landscape Architecture at RMIT, Melbourne. He has also held various part-time and sessional teaching and lecturing roles in art, design and creative theory at various art schools and universities in Victoria and New South Wales. He also occasionally offers workshops on songwriting, art and creative thinking.