“My creative medium is music. I dabbled a lot growing up. I did hand drawing, and I originally went to college to become an animator.
But music has always stayed with me. My style is kind of all over the place when it comes to what I play and what I take in. What I play has changed from punk rock to metal to everything in between. I like writing simple-yet-articulated, groovy riffs that are very catchy. That’s my favorite thing to do: writing heavy riffs that people can bop their heads to and connect with easily.
A turning point that made me want to become a musician was around middle school. The drummer for the Tumbleweed Jumpers and Sanchez Agency, Chuck Long, asked me what kind of music I liked. I had a vague sense of what I wanted to listen to from playing video games. I said, “I like punk-rock music,” and he handed me this stack of probably 12 CDs. I remember putting those on my walkman on a family trip and just falling in love with that style of music, with the idea of, ‘I want to do that. I want to do music.’ It was probably around that time when I switched from playing drums to playing guitar because I was like, ‘I want to be in the front. I want that attention.’ It formed who I am as an artist; it was definitely what molded me. It was really cool that this person I looked up to was trying to give me a piece of his collection to help mold me. And it did.
Something I am proud of as a musician is that [ZAF] finally released our CDs about two years ago. Before, I always played in punk rock bands that never went anywhere. But with ZAF, when we had physical copies of what we worked so hard for, it created this new idea of what we were doing. It wasn’t just some guys messing around with what we thought was cool, but now we have a tangible copy of this accomplishment. These are seven songs we worked hard to write, and we have a version of them that we’re really proud of. It propelled us even further forward.
Goshen is the perfect catalyst for all kinds of art. There had been a lull in the music scene for many years. Now everyone is so supportive and uplifting of everybody’s styles of music and bands. The shows we play in Goshen end up being a lot larger than the shows we’re playing elsewhere. Even if it’s not everyone’s preferred style of music, you still want to support your friends, so everybody comes out and is there for you. They are genuinely interested in what you’re doing, where you’re going, what the next step is. It’s a powerful support system that helps birth creativity. Coming from playing in a punk band in other cities, nobody cared about what we were doing. We’d play shows for 12 to 13 people. Even though it was fun, it didn’t breed the energy it takes to get in that mindset of flowing gears in the system. Things are fluidly being expressed from your fingers to your hands, to the lyrics you’re writing.
Goshen provides an energy that makes it just feel natural. I really, really appreciate that catalyst for the creative mind.”