SPECIAL INTERVIEW: Shota


theaussieword.com catches up with US artist Shota for a special interview.

Tell us how it all started. What had you first interested in music?

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Honestly I think I’d have to thank my father on that one. From an early age he had me listening to The Beatles, Stevie Wonder Dylan etc.. I remember driving to school in like 2nd grade in LA traffic for 2 hours and he’d be blasting Brandenburg Concertos by Bach. Then once I got a little older he really pushed me to learn piano and clarinet. He gave roots that will that will keep me grounded forever.

What motivates or influences you in your quest to make great music?

My motivation is usually love or truth. I’m always chasing something… whether it’s a girl, or my next song, or a chance to hang out with my family… there’s always a longing for something in my life and thats what motivates me. But with truth, if I do become really successful in music, I believe that it is my responsibility to spread the word and tell the world, tell the kids, tell the uneducated what’s really going on behind the curtains, because it’s a scary place out there and most people don’t even know the half of it. I think John Lennon taught me that one (:

What are your biggest goals you hope to accomplish as an artist?

To move people. That is my goal. Music has been my savior, my meditation, my form of healing. Anytime I have been sad, feeling alone, or just anything.. music has been my one constant. I was that kid in high school who walked around campus with earphones on singing while walking to class. So, I really want to move people the way music has moved me. I want people to know that they are not alone.

Success, what is the secret to it?

The secret to success is hard work, dedication, perseverance… whatever you want to call it. I know people talk about it a lot but they’re just words. I rarely meet people who are really committed.. when it comes to my friends at least. My friends always thought this music thing was just a hobby.. they would al be in college studying business and finance and economics, while they thought i was just at home fucking around with a guitar trying to figure out an F chord. So I believe the secret to success is 98% hard work & 2% luck.

What has been your biggest career highlight so far?

The highlight of my career so far has been moving to LA. I’ve finally met people who understand me that won’t let me sacrifice my artistry for a sell out move. I mean yes, at first they wanted me to try things I didn’t want to do… but they could see that my heart wasn’t in it. Here’s the thing.. the chances of making it are so small anyways, so why not do what you want to do. Be different. Be you. And I won’t allow anyone to change me.

Which stars of the music industry do you find inspiring?
I don’t really understand the industry quite yet, as my first album has dropped so recently. This has been the most difficult thing for me. You know back in the 60’s, no matter how you looked, as long as you had talent and the music was good, you made it. The music truly spoke for itself. I honestly loath the fact that I have to tweet and Instagram every moment of my life. But i get it, people want to know me.. I just wish it would be through just my music and not every other aspect of my life, like what I had for lunch.

The music industry is huge, where do you see yourself a few years from now?
Man….. I don’t know. It’s so unpredictable isn’t it? I mean I would like to see myself on stages performing for thousands of people. I wanna be singing along my idols and heroes who I can eventually call my friends.

The shape of the music industry has changed significantly over the years, including the use of social media, how do you feel about the industry as a whole and what does it mean to you in getting your records out into the public eye?
I don’t really understand the industry quite yet, as my first album has dropped so recently. This has been the most difficult thing for me. You know back in the 60’s, no matter how you looked, as long as you had talent and the music was good, you made it. The music truly spoke for itself. I honestly loath the fact that I have to tweet and Instagram every moment of my life. But i get it, people want to know me.. I just wish it would be through just my music and not every other aspect of my life, like what I had for lunch.

Name a few of your favourite Aussie artists.

Aussie artists…….. Alright so let me start with the obvious ones. There’s Sia (GODDESS), Gotye, not a country listener but I love Keith Urban, Flume, Empire of the Sun, and I listened to Jet when I was younger. But…. I love love love Matt Corby and Xavier Rudd… I even like that new kid Joel Adams, I actually remember seeing his audition for X factor or something a few years ago.

What can we expect from you in the coming months? Any plans to tour?
Upcoming months is tour time baby. I start my West Coast America tour. Right now we have about 10-15 cities but I think we’re gonna have about 25 cities by the end of it. My freshman album came out officially on Spotify last week…. but get ready for my next album.. probably will come out sometime early to mid next year… the songs are just so…. ahhh just wait till you hear it. I promise you won’t be disappointed. Look at me, getting all excited just typing about it lol (:

Tell us a bit about your latest record, how would you best describe your music?
My latest ( and first) album is called Out of the Blur, which is the name of one of the songs on the EP. Most of my songs are about unrequited love and a longing for someone like i said earlier… but Out of the Blur talks about how we are all trying to stay connected through social media, the internet, WiFi, when really all we are doing is creating masks and disconnecting from each other. People used to light candles and stare at music concerts. Now nobody ever looks at the artist.. they are staring at them through their smartphone… and thats what inspired that song and the album name. I believe that song was my responsibility as an artist to try and wake people up, especially the youth. Everyone always asks me how I would describe my music.. I never know how to answer that. I have singer songwriter type songs, I have songs with a deep house beats. and on my next album I have very melodic and lyrical songs with real instruments but with hip-hop type beats, So the only way to describe my music is it sounds like SHōTA. I’ll let the fans decide the rest.

Do you have any new projects in the pipeline?
YES! My next album. Just stay tuned. It’s pretty much almost finished but we gotta let the first album run its course first. But really, stay tuned.. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Thanks for the interview! What final message do you have for us today?

 I just want to say thank you so much for the interview. Hopefully I can make it to Australia someday. Until then, peace and love.

Website: www.thisisshota.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/thisisshota
Twitter: twitter.com/_thisisshota

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