One of the highlights of Moogfest for me was getting to interview some of the artists. We decided to spotlight a couple of artists to watch. Today’s spotlight is on Demo Taped (aka Adam Alexander), an 18-year-old Atlanta native fresh off a tour in Europe whose latest tracks have been featured on several of Spotify’s viral playlists.
If you like, you can play his song in the background while checking out this interview. This is one of his latest singles, Game On.
Liane S.: How excited are you for Moogfest?
Demo Taped: I’m very excited. I have always wanted to come to Moogfest, so the first time I’m here I am playing the festival and that is something that is so beautiful! And I think that’s absolutely amazing, so I am very excited to play and really feel out the crowd…it’s like a dream come true.
LS: You’re from Atlanta, right?
DT: Yeah. Atlanta, Georgia.
LS: So, how’s Durham been treating you?
DT: Durham is nice! I didn’t know what to expect, I’ve never been out here before but I really like it. I really like how close everything is. It’s very nice. The people are great. Everywhere in the South I think there is a southern hospitality.
LS: You just came off a tour in Europe, how was that?
DT: That was beautiful. It was my first big tour. It was great to connect with the crowd. It was great to see people were enjoying the music from overseas. In some places, like in Belgium, there were people that were singing along and knew the words. I was just taken aback by that, that was insane.
LS: How did that come about? I mean, you haven’t even put out a full album yet!
DT: I’ve got a great team! They’re amazing people.
LS: How did you get into music?
DT: So I started playing piano when I was 4. My piano teacher figured out I could sing, which was kind of random…and then from then on I was the only one singing and playing piano during the recitals. My piano teacher would call me John Legend, which was really funny. My dad has been a musician for forever and he’s a bass player. He really brought me up on all the stuff I need to know- everything I needed to know, all the musicians I needed to listen to- yeah, my dad. He’s always been there, he’s always been a driving force behind my career and my music in general.
LS: Do [your parents] travel with you?
DT: Yeah! My mom’s right out there. She came with me. We’re so close, so why not? Only 5 hours away. It’s really great to have people that you know are with you because they want to be with you and they love you, you know?
LS: What kind of music has influenced your style?
DT: P funk, George Clinton, a lot of that funk. Herbie Hancock… [he] was radical! I like radical artists who are okay going against the grain who are cool with causing waves. That’s something I’ve always wanted to be, someone who’s not afraid to merge genres or be different. It’s something I’ve always wanted.
LS: And your music is a blend of styles, so how would you describe your style.
DT: (laughs) I always say electronic pop. And then I say, wait, no! Electronic R&B. and then I go, wait, no! and it’s a whole list. But I say electronic pop/electronic R&B is where I’m at now. But I think it’s going to change, I think it’s going to evolve. Trying to incorporate more funk, more soul, more Motown. Incorporate more stuff. Maybe more gospel.
LS: What’s your creative process like?
DT: I start a draft in Ableton, which is what I use to produce. Sometimes I just start with background vocals and I’ll just sing and you know just make some weird melody up. Sometimes I start with chord structure and then lay down some baseline melody vocals that don’t make sense but it sounds nice. And sometimes out of those nonsense words there are real words that…makes sense. Sometimes I just write a poem and make something out of that. It varies. It really varies. I try to keep things really different and always evolving because I never want to be set in one way of doing things. I want to be versatile. I want to be able to do things in different ways and not be stuck. Say I don’t have paper, I can just do the chord thing. Say I don’t have a computer with me, I can do the write down lyrics thing. I always want to be able to make music. No matter what. No matter where I am.
LS: What advice do you have for young people who want to pursue music?
DT: Keep at it. Really just create things and don’t be afraid to put them out there. Because something that’s really hard is mustering up the strength and the energy to literally press upload or press save .You know its hard. Its scary. To put yourself out there and put your music out there. And I say to anybody who’s really interested in creating music, just do it. You know? Just create, keep creating, if at first you don’t succeed, try try again.
LS: What’s on the horizon for you for the next year?
DT: I’m going on tour in October with Wet and that’s gonna be really fun. I’m finishing my album right now. I’m working on some different things. I’m really trying to be more creative with everything. I don’t want to just release albums. I want to release albums that are paired with short films or stories or books- something that’s different that sets everything apart and really help to create a world and not just this body of work that’s just music. I want to have something that people can listen to and then go look at something else. I’m very visual so I want that to translate into my music.
His show was spectacular and I can’t wait to catch him on tour again. He’s working on an album that will be out soon but does not have a set release date yet. I’ll leave you with this clip.