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INTERVIEW – FORREST DAY

I first became aware of Forrest Day back at the start of lockdown, through a submission to the site; the quirky, timely smash hit “Quarantine Dream”.

Now it’s time to dig deeper and get to know the man behind the band, and the journey that has brought them to where they are now – and indeed, where they are looking to go in the near future.

PW – Hey guys, welcome to Pastel Wasteland. For those who aren’t familiar with your work quite yet, how would you introduce both yourself and your sound?

I don’t believe we have a genre, because I write such diverse music. From hip-hop to folk, to punk to jazz. I know I probably sound full of shit, but I really just focus on expressing myself as authentically as I can. And we are such complex creatures. I don’t want to focus on just one type of feeling or area of life. Theres too much ground to cover to get stuck repeating yourself…

PW – Let’s talk about beginnings. Where did you guys all meet, and how did the band come together?

Terrell (guitar) and I have been friends since we were kids, been rocking since like 14 or 15. Nick (keys) and I met through a friend of mine who was dating him. She was one of my best friends and he treated her so well, I always respected him. So when I started the group and she said he was down to meet and try it out I knew he was a fit.

Chris Carlos I knew from other bands he played in, so when our original bass player Sankey quit I gave him a ring. And lastly Javier Torres has been rocking with us since 2018, great guy, ridiculous talent. Met him through a girlfriend. Honestly we are 14 years deep now so this is a long story, we’ve had some personnel changes over the years.

PW – I reviewed ‘Quarantine Dream’ last year, and must say that track truly encompassed the surreality of the lockdown and the whole situation (and I still play it almost daily). What can you tell us about the production of that track, and the video you put together to accompany it?

Thats rad you play it almost daily!!!

I made that track entirely on lockdown here in the Philippines. They shut down the airport on the island I’m on with like 3 days notice lol…so I went a little crazy and made a weird song and dance video. Never made a song like it. Was really fun just making a nitrous oxide bang your head against the wall till you feel better banger… The sound is definitely inspired by a genre of music here called Budots…which is absolutely brilliant and the world has totally missed out on it…the production, style, and the dancing is just so hip and fun to me…

The video was an adventure. Filmed the whole thing on my iPhone actually. Hired local talent through friends and reaching out to a dance company. It was my first time directing and editing and all that…quite an experience. I’m really proud of that work…I still can’t believe I made it when I watch it…I laugh and go wtf was I thinking hahaha

PW – You guys have been an outfit for over ten years. What are the main changes you’ve seen through this time, and would you say they have been largely positive or negative?

14 years man…seen a lot of changes…so many era’s, so many special times…I feel 100 percent positive about the whole ride. It’s a great band and we love each other very much. But it’s the fanbase that makes the whole thing tick. We are blessed with amazing supporters. Really open minded to new music, I feel so free creatively because our fans are so loving and don’t expect any specific sound when we play something new. I’m so fuckin grateful for that..

PW – What is your favourite way to relax away from making music?

I like to walk, swim, play with my daughter Valley, watch something with my wife…

PW – What do you have planned for 2021? What can you tell us about your upcoming album?

I have sooo much music to release.  I have an album I’ve spent like 5 years on that’s close…but I feel weird about releasing it without being able play shows or even shoot a video with the band. I’m gonna be in the Philippines till close to the end of this year…..but I’m sitting on some other cool shit, real crazy hip-hoppish stuff.

And I’m writing a ton on the guitar right now too..focusing on really sing songy kind of stuff…I wanna make songs that can be sung around a fire with an acoustic guitar…I don’t have many that work like that very well..but honestly, my 2021 plans are kinda turning into 2022…I’m still kinda stuck in the Philippines for awhile until my baby boy gets a passport. He’s due in a couple weeks, still in the oven..

PW – 2020 and the lockdown have been tough in several ways. What has the last year taught you in terms of both your career and life as a whole?

The last year taught me to focus, prepare, and also just spend time sharpening my tools or creating new ones. I learned a lot of shit this year that I wouldn’t have in Oakland just hustling to make ends meet. Being stuck and stripped of my work made me focus on more creation and getting other ducks in a row, like getting my online shit together, monetizing my youtube channel etc…

PW – In terms of the creative journey, in this kind of industry, it can be tough to feel like we’re moving forwards sometimes. How do you battle these feelings when they come up, and do you have any advice to other people who might be struggling in a similar way?

I don’t struggle with this…maybe its because of what I said before about our lack of genre…I just write music that makes me feel better at the time. I’ve had dry spells with lyrics and songwriting but I try not to sweat it…you gotta live life in order to have something to sing about. Replenish the well…My advice is that…

I think my lack of commercial success helps too…less pressure from a label for example to just churn shit out…if I had blown up, they would have brought in co songwriters other producers to speed things up…which maybe could be awesome, or maybe water me down….who knows.

PW – And finally, where would we find you on social media, and do you have anything else you’d like to add?

Nothing to add except thank you for supporting independent music, and shining a little light on my band..

Insta @forrestday

https://www.facebook.com/forrestdaymusic

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