Happy Monday folks! I know what you’re thinking… it’s a Monday and we have already been blessed with another Beneath The Surface feature. Aren’t I good to you? Here’s hoping you have a smashing start to your week despite a new lockdown looming (yay). In todays feature we get to know the NJ based, alternative rock, Indie pop punk star that is alexdrake. So grab a warming bev (mine today is a camomile tea, rock & or roll chaps) and let’s get to it!
What would you say first sparked your interest in music/who inspired you to make music?
Hands down, my family sparked my interest in music. Both my mother and father were huge music advocates and made sure my brothers and I grew up with an array of musical exposures. My mother had more of an Americana taste – she loved your simple 60s/70s Pop Rock and Folk music which exponentially opened my eyes to some of the best songwriters I’ve ever researched (Jackson Browne, Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, to name a few). My father was way more into dance music of his time…. Motown, R&B, Disco, etc. Exposure to his musical preferences really opened my mind to some of the best musicianship ever. Both of my parents created a free thinking environment for my brothers and I growing up…. me being the youngest, both of my older brothers played guitar. I eventually picked it up when I was around 11 but fell in love with percussion instead. I later would become a drummer of my first band. Though I am taking more of a singer/guitarist role in my solo project, I write all the drums/bass/piano/etc for all the songs due to that versatile upbringing my parents made for us kids.
How would you describe the music you are currently creating?
The music I am currently creating is a mix of songs I have written when I was younger and some more recent ideas. The push to really initiate my solo career stemmed from pent up emotions/energy I’ve had that I finally felt comfortable enough to translate to music. With “Peace of Mind” you have a really euphoric feeling towards the end of the song, while the beginning lyrics capture an obvious struggle that many humans deal with daily. The EP I am currently working on that “Peace of Mind” and “Circles” will both be included on – really sets out to exemplify the multiple influences I have. Some of my songs are your generic Pop Rock all the way to Punk. Though the industry mandates artists to stay siloed to specific genres, I want to push forward that you really don’t have to. It would be impossible for me, with the music background I have, to restrict my art and creative process to one specific genre.
What does your creative process look like?
My creative process really has no guidelines. Typically – If I am writing a new song, it’s a riff or harmony I come up with and I sit down and get to writing all the instruments then I develop the vocals around the instrumentation. Sometimes I do the opposite with lyric/melody writings first – then the instruments come next. It really is as sporadic as the genres I fall into as an artist.
Who would you most like to collaborate with? (let’s send it out to the universe and make it happen!)
I love this question, I have been blessed to collab with some of my favorite artists currently with AJ Perdomo of The Dangerous Summer for “Peace of Mind” & my upcoming release “Let It Go” featuring Nick Casasanto from Knuckle Puck. With that being said, one artist I really really enjoy right now is Kennyhoopla – I love his take on the punk sound and his work in bringing that sound back. I would love to get the opportunity to get in the studio with him and everyone should check him out.
What is the one message you would like to send out to your fans?
It’s really as simple as though times are tough, work hard to keep yourself and your loved ones happy. Keep striving for greatness and you will get there. It is really easy to be consumed by negativity right now… it isn’t easy to think on the bright side – though it may seem that things are at an all time low… it is important as individuals we strive to keep our conscious at an all time high.
What’s your top tip to rejuvenate your creativity/get over a writer’s block?
Time – I typically won’t even touch an instrument or pen/paper if I am not feeling it. All my songs are 100% emotional and are all stemmed off how I am feeling at the time of writing. If the feeling ain’t there, neither am I. Take time and get back when you are ready. You can’t rush or fake the creative process.
What’s next for you, what do we have to look forward to/ what are you currently working on?
I am going to continue to release another 3 singles that will combine to form my first EP – After that, I am going to continue to write & release music as it goes. Music is my therapy and I turn to it as I need (which at this time with everything going on in society – clearly I have been turning to it often, hahaha)