Music is something that’s been with me for as long as I can remember. It’s pretty remarkable how a song can vividly take you to a different time and place. One of my earliest memories is of my dad blasting “Semi-Charmed Life” by Third Eye Blind in our family’s Land Rover, while driving me to kindergarten in the late 90s. Whenever I hear that song, which is typically in a Duane Reade at 2am, I’m immediately taken back to that moment and how everything seemed so carefree then. Other classics in rotation on my dad’s commute included “One Week” by Barenaked Ladies and Shania Twain’s “Man! I Feel Like A Woman.”
Music has always been my way of making sense of the world and working through what I’m feeling. I’ll never forget coming home from high school, going straight to my basement and recording punk demos with my friends into a tiny, overblown laptop mic. I’d fall asleep listening to the recordings we made and work hard the next day to track the perfect take out of my wonky Fender Champion amp; all while attempting to channel the DIY ethos of Jeff Rosenstock. Even though our recordings sounded thin and noisy, they served as an artistic medium that helped me connect with myself on an emotional level.
I believe that music is one of the few purest forms of expression because of its ability to evoke emotions, elicit memories and create environments. I hear melodies and rhythms in my head everyday, and there’s nothing more gratifying than the process of translating them into a story that others can relate to. To me, music is an inherently positive concept that everyone can access in some form. Regardless of context, all of it is relatable and emotional to some degree – whether it’s Fergie, Death Grips or John Cage. Being able to connect to something is a wonderful thing.
Favorite Record Store
Smash! Records – Washington, DC
Rough Trade – Brooklyn, NY
Disk Union – Tokyo, JP
Favorite Concert Venue
Market Hotel – Brooklyn, NY
Baby’s All Right – Brooklyn, NY
9:30 Club – Washington, DC
Unknown Caller is a midnight pop artist based in Brooklyn, NY. Inspired by the music of Neon Indian, Toro y Moi and Japanese city pop as well as the Memphis design movement—he delivers smooth grooves underneath sun-faded synths and shimmering guitars.