Erly Tepshi

Ferrara, Italy

Ghost Ship


Behind the Music

Communicating the words of The Outlaw Ocean through music can be incredibly powerful in revealing deeper meaning behind ideas and concepts. When it comes to Ian’s reporting, it’s important for people to branch out of their comfort zones and be confronted with these difficult stories — like those in “Jail Without Bars” and “Sea Slavery.” When composing my tracks, I tried to immerse myself in each chapter to be able to best communicate the sounds and atmospheres of particular moments throughout the book. After I read “Storming the Thunder,” I wanted to convey a sense of a high-adrenaline pursuit — of a ship trying to escape, but without success. I accomplished this in my track, “Chase,” by including a rhythm change that helped illustrate this heart-pounding moment through sound. Music and art have the capacity to touch people in a range of ways, and having songs that interpret the characters and scenes of The Outlaw Ocean makes the tales the book tells even more impactful to a listener.

Erly Tepshi
About Erly Tepshi

Erly Tepshi is inspired by the new wave of electronic music, which features deeply emotional sounds and vibrations. His sound remains dark and centers around what is contained within the darkness.

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

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