URB: Patrick Lew Interview

HOW DID YOU FIRST GET INTO PLAYING MUSIC? When I first saw Silverchair in concert back in 1997. I was amazed by the dynamic performance from the Australian rock trio onstage. I was playing second fiddle playing sports in school, and was getting hurt all the time. And of course, I've always loved music. Because I used to watch a lot of TV growing up finding out about the latest rock bands that were mainstream at the time. Going to my first concert made me realize, "This is what I want to do!"

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN PERFORMING? Since 2001. For a long while, I experimented with many different names for my band's music. We had band names like Samurai Sorcerers and other random shit. But this was meant to be my solo project with the help of some friends. Me and my friends would do a collaboration online putting pieces of the music together online. Like we would send each other instrumental parts we've recorded in our own studios when we had the time to. So we basically Frankenstein the music together through online collaboration. So I guess calling it Patrick Lew Band it was then.

HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR SOUND IN ONE SENTENCE? Imagine if Nirvana, The Beatles, Marilyn Manson and Green Day had a foursome and had an Asian baby.

WHAT MAKES YOUR MUSIC UNIQUE? I always strive to be myself for the most part as a musician. Combining all my influences from my mom's generation like The Beatles and The Stones alongside my 90's kid inspirations. Like all the grunge bands from Seattle like Nirvana and of course, the Britpop bands like Oasis. I try to study as many great rock musicians and bands as possible to create my own sound in the studio. But for the most part, when I play live, I sound like an amateur punk rock band. Haha.

WHAT INSPIRES YOU TO WRITE SONGS? You know? The personal experiences I've had growing up and present. Or inspirations of stories and news I find through the television.

 

WHAT HAVE BEEN YOUR BEST AND WORST GIG EXPERIENCES? I don't play shows usually as a solo musician. I will say this though. When I play with other guys in a band, we take it a little more seriously as far as being in a band goes. But alone, I just come up with some idea here and there, record them on my laptop, and post the songs online for some recognition or merit. I toured the San Francisco Bay Area sporadically over the years. Me and my former friend and bandmate Greg did a bunch of secret shows in Contra Costa County and later uploaded them on YouTube and Facebook in 2011. In my old band, we played a couple of shows in San Francisco, we were touring with Tinkture and Elevator Love Letters at the time. This was in 2007. I also played an outdoor event at Dolores Park in San Francisco in February 2012. Since then, I played live whenever I felt like it and had the time to. I didn't had anything really to prove by being in a band, I just wanted to be known as an artist rather than just being this dude in a rock band.

IF YOU HAD TO LISTEN TO ONE ALBUM FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE WHAT WOULD IT BE? Any album from The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones (circa 1968 to 1972), Guns N Roses, Nirvana, Blink 182 and of course, the 1992 album Refugee from Bad 4 Good.

 

WHAT DO YOU GET UP TO WHEN YOU’RE NOT MAKING MUSIC? I am actually an Ambassador for Antennas Direct, a TV antenna manufacturer. I'm very passionate about home theater and over-the-air television. I even was endorsed by Antennas Direct because I've written a song about the cord cutting movement in the States. Other than that, I work my regular day job as a merchandiser in the Bay Area and as a computer sales associate at Best Buy on the weekends, I'm also doing a lot of photography on my smartphone and uploading photos I take through my Instagram and Facebook. And of course, I would do some acting in a film.

WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS AT THE MOMENT? To become more successful as a musician and artist. And to find my future wife.

WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN WORKING ON LATELY? ANY NEW TRACKS OR GIGS LINED UP? Currently, I'm in a new band called TheVerse and I'm right now in the studio with my solo project Steel Lions working on finishing our forthcoming album Play It Loud. I'm doing all the demos at home, and I'm planning to head back to Neverfade drummer Erick's recording space once every demo has been completed and really work on finishing up the album and releasing it on social-media. As far as TheVerse goes, it's a band of three good friends and different talented musicians jamming at my garage, producing music in my home studio and our goal is to make it a hobby but eventually play some shows of course.

WHAT DO YOU THINK OF UNSIGNED BAND REVIEW? I like it. I hope I get more exposure off this website and some average reviews here and there.

WHAT IS THE NAME OF THE LAST TRACK THAT YOU WROTE AND WHAT IS IT ABOUT? It was a demo of a piece of music I've recorded at Neverfade drummer Erick's studio back in July. I completed the vocals and added extra instrumentation through electronics in my own personal studio using GarageBand. It's been uploaded on the Patrick Lew & the Steel Lions page on ReverbNation. And the old Patrick Lew Band page on social-media. It's basically a four minute rocker where I just scream and wail my ass off on the microphone and proving that I'm no hack in the indie music scene and just basically pretty much sticking it the man.

 

WHAT WAS THE MUSIC SCENE LIKE WHERE YOU GREW UP? I grew up in the Bay Area music scene. I've been a part of it since 2001. I've meet many peers here in the local music scene where I live. I've always attended shows that friends of mines put on at local venues with their bands. As far as music goes, there's a lot. But it seems like the rock/metal scene is bigger in San Jose than it is here in San Francisco. The rave music scene has really taken off big time in the Bay. I do go to EDM events here and there locally, what you call undergrounds. I have some friends who are actually DJs themselves spinning at local rave parties. The scene itself is pretty scattered, and I think at times, the techies are kind of killing the Bay Area music scene in some ways. But there's a lot of great talented bands, artists and musicians here of all sorts. But there's a lot of us out here. The dominant genre for musicians who actually play instruments is Metalcore, which I don't mind of course, but it's gotten pretty oversaturated. I do see a lot of great music and bands in San Francisco though, We do exist. Including yours truly.

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