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Scala to stage biggest headline show of Ten Tonnes' career to date

PUBLISHED: 11:56 14 January 2019

Ethan Barnett, aka Ten Tonnes, plays a headline gig at Scala on February 5.

Ethan Barnett, aka Ten Tonnes, plays a headline gig at Scala on February 5.

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The singer-songwriter from Hertford is hotly tipped as one of the most exciting acts to look out for in 2019. Ahead of his debut album release in April, Ten Tonnes will play a handful of live shows including a date at Scala in February.

The Scala show comes before his self-titled album, released April 5.The Scala show comes before his self-titled album, released April 5.

2019 is already shaping up to be a mighty fine year for Ten Tonnes.

The 21-year-old singer-songwriter, otherwise known as Ethan Barnett, releases his highly-anticipated debut album on April 5, with a run of four shows across the UK scheduled before then. A headline gig at Scala on February 5 will be the biggest of his career so far.

“I’ve only done two headline shows before this and they’ve both been in London, so I wanted to get back to doing a few others in London but also elsewhere,” he says.

“I’m super excited to play Scala. I saw Twin Peaks play there a year or so ago and it was great. I love that venue and am buzzing for it.”

The cover for Ten Tonnes' first album.The cover for Ten Tonnes' first album.

If 2019 is the year for headline sets and a debut record, 2018 wasn’t too shabby, either. As catchy indie tracks like Lucy and Cracks Between gained more air-time and his fanbase increased, Barnett found himself playing Wembley Arena three times – twice opening for Stereophonics and once for his brother, George Ezra.

“That was really nuts. Those kinds of shows aren’t even on my radar of things that could be possible, so when you get the message asking you to be a part of it – that is insane, really.

“When you’re playing those gigs you can’t really believe it; you’re on for half-an-hour and they go so quickly. Afterwards you get off stage and you wonder if that really just happened. I feel very lucky to have done it.”

Barnett first dabbled in music as a child when learning to play the drums, but where does his Ten Tonnes stage name originate from?

The Hertford-based act is the younger brother of George Ezra.The Hertford-based act is the younger brother of George Ezra.

“I wish there was a more interesting story to this,” he laughs. “I was just doing some open-mic nights where there were loads of singer-songwriters, and I wanted something that stood out from the list of names.

“It sounded quite cool to me, although I remember telling my mum and she said it was an awful name!”

In terms of musical influences, Barnett cites The Beatles (“pretty standard, I know”), Tom Petty, Elvis Costello and The Smiths as important in helping him to shape his sound. Ten Tonnes’ self-titled debut album features two songs co-written by former Kaiser Chief Nick Hodgson, and has been produced by Hugo White (of Maccabees fame) and Dan Grech.

With bags of charm and very obvious musical talent running in the family, it’s easy to see why commentators and DJs would tip Ten Tonnes for big things. For the man himself, it’s all about focusing on one thing at a time.

“I don’t try and think too far ahead, really. I’m just focused on enjoying being a musician – every day is exciting and there is always something new going on.

“It’s amazing that I get to work with these people and get to call them friends and colleagues.

“My only ambition was to have an album out, so it feels quite strange that it’s happening. I’m super happy about it, and I can’t wait to hold it in my hands.”

Ten Tonnes plays Scala on Tuesday, February 5. More details on his upcoming album can be found here.

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