Interview with our ReverbNation Winner, Chicago’s AFTERSOUND
1. Age and how long in the industry? How is the music scene in your area?
I’m 31 and Shap is 21. Big age difference but I swear we don’t even think about it. We have so many of the same life goals and share the vision for AfterSound and that keeps us focused.
Chicago is an interesting town music-wise. I definitely understand why folks would say you gotta leave when I was younger, but I think it’s gotten much better. Social media and the internet has helped connect a lot of the different parts of the city so I think the scene will continue to grow and develop over time.
2. Let's have some fun! What's your Zodiac Sign?
We’re both Libras and I think that actually shows in our personalities. We’re both highly creative and draw a lot of energy from each other because when we have an idea, we just keep hyping each other up to do whatever it takes to make it happen.
3. What is your main inspirational philosophy in life? Favorite quote and why?
Just being grateful. I think people get so wrapped up in negativity and distractions that we forget all of the positive things we have going in our lives. It’s really just perspective on a big picture type of level. I try to live my life that way and just be a positive influence on everyone around me.
Quote: “Doing the right thing is always the right thing.” - Gary Vaynerchuk
4. Ok, now...who are YOU as an artist? What is your story?
So AfterSound is a project I started to be more than just me, and more than just music. I come from a singer/songwriter background and Shap used to drum in heavy metal bands. Somehow we’ve been able to create a cool fusion for the sound we’re going for, and it’s a big part of why we love playing live. It’s funny, even with completely different backgrounds we both have a similar origin story - the video game Rockband.
Before playing that game, I had never sung or played guitar and Shap had never played the drums. Through that though, we both were set upon our individual paths that ultimately led to a random Craigslist meet-up which turned into AfterSound. Crazy how things played out, but it’s such a fun story for us to reminisce about.
5. Who are your musical influences and what genre of music would you say your style is?
Someone once described us as John Mayer meets a heavy metal drummer, but I think we’ve evolved beyond that to create our own sound. Technically, we’ve been categorized as electronic pop but that’s what makes our live sets so fun. We can get creative and do outside the box things with our music.
6. What is the state of the music industry right now? Where is it going?
The music industry has been revolutionized by the Internet - and it’s been amazing. I think streaming has solved a lot of the piracy issues that Napster introduced back in the early 2000s. But even more so, it’s become so easy to go directly to your fans. You don’t need a label or major money behind you. Put out good music and hustle. And hustling is important because with it being so easy to be a musician these days, it means there are a lot more bands and artists out there. You gotta just be you and be authentic, and I think that’s what is making music nowadays so amazing. We’re getting to hear so many people’s stories. Personally, I love it and I can’t wait to see where it goes in the next 5-10 years.
7. How is your Art “your Religion”?
So this hit me awhile ago and made me realize why Music is my religion. Like most people, I have a lot of different interests and love to get involved in all types of projects. But I came to the realization that even if I became the best at (insert random thing here), it still wouldn’t be as fulfilling as pushing my limits as far as I can in my own musical journey. It’s helped me to refocus on what’s important for me and that’s really pushed us to start releasing a lot more music over the last couple of years.
8. What are you truly creating with your music that changes the world, changes society?
I think it’s a little impractical to think every musician or song is going to change the world. But, I think every song or artist has the potential to change a person’s world. If through my music I can be a positive force on just one person’s life - helping them get through a tough time or live life to the fullest - then it’s all worth it. I try to be mindful of the fact that any and all of my actions have some type of impact on every person I meet. As long as I’m doing my best to make those actions a positive one then I’m good.
9. What is the spiritual, political or social message of your music?
I wouldn’t say we have specific themes in our songs, at least not across the board. What I try to do is write something as personal as I can, because then it allows me to relate with literally anyone because we can connect on a human level.
10. What do you really think it takes to make it in the music industry? Tell us 3 keys.
You’ll note I left talent off of there. It’s important, but there are a lot of talented musicians. The ones who make it big put in the hard work and I respect the hell out of them for that work ethic.
11. Where do you see your career going in 2019?
2018 ain’t over yet! We have a lot of music lined up before the New Year’s countdown begins!
That being said, we are just going to keep building. You make new fans one at a time by reaching them on a deeper level. Our game plan is to continue releasing as much music as we can in 2019 and start playing live in surrounding areas outside Chicago. Gotta build regionally first and then go from there.
12. Legacy: At the end of the day, how do you want your fans to remember you and your music?
At the end of the day, I want people to be able to listen to our music and have it take them closer to wherever they are trying to go - be it emotionally, spiritually, or physically.