There is not a day that goes by that we don’t see a remix or a cover coming from an indie artist originally done by someone from the mainstream. Only, we don’t usually see the latter thanking the other. While it may’ve happened more than once. The one we know of is when Nightshifts remixed Bon Iver’s “Michicant” and was sent a monetary thank you. Nightshifts knew he wanted to pursue music before that moment but after that, well…that’s just one of the things we spoke of. That, plus love, furniture, and more.
Kendra: When you first got interested in music, was it from an artist’s or a producer’s perspective. Because today you dabble on both sides of the fence.
Nightshifts: I actually discovered a love for both sides around the same time. When I was 12 I started playing guitar with kids from my school and started making hip-hop beats with friends on my basketball team. I continued to pursue both sides separately. Nightshifts is the first time I really merged my interests in production and songwriting.
I am very drawn to music by artists that do their own production: Tame Impala, Mac Demarco, Andy Shauf. They are able to create such a singular vibe by controlling every step of the process.
Kendra: When that all went down with Bon Iver, was that your “This is what I’m meant to be doing” moment of reassurance?
Nightshifts: I had decided much earlier that I wanted to be a professional musician, but that moment did give me the confidence to tell others about my goals and dreams. He is a huge idol of mine, it is still one of my most exciting moments.
Kendra: So you’re in Toronto, in a new apartment and you construct “All Along.” Being that it’s a realistic song about love and timing, did it spawn from true events or was your imagination just running?
Nightshifts: The song was inspired by true events, but very little conscious thought was put into writing it. It had been a while since I had written a song which resulted in a good buildup of emotion and inspiration. I just came home one day and wrote the whole song in one go.
Kendra: For you personally, when it the right time to let someone know that you’re into them?
Nightshifts: I haven’t quite figured that one out yet. I just write songs and hope for the best. Let me know if you have any advice!
Kendra: Haha, the things I know about love have all been learned from TV. The Office and Frasier both seem to be about the long game. I say…we all don’t have x-amount of seasons to wait. Nevertheless, let’s circle back to that apartment. You noted it was unfurnished when you wrote the song but have you gotten some furniture since?
Nightshifts: Yup! I now have a desk, a chair, and some stuff up on the walls. Although I do kind of miss the floor-sitting lifestyle, very zen.
Kendra: Back to the music. You’re planning on releasing a new song every month from here on out. Not something new. I see artists do that all the time, but for you…are you making these in advance and then dropping them, or taking each one as they come?
Nightshifts: I have been working on songs for Nightshifts for about two years now. I’ve been able to build up a good stockpile of tunes to release. I am also still writing, so it will be a combination of oldies and new ones.
Kendra: Other than a song a month, any other plans to round out the year?
Nightshifts: I hope to put out some videos and start playing shows pretty soon. I also want to start producing as much as I can for other artists.
Kendra: Lastly, we love the arts here at ZO. With that, if you had to compare “All Along” to a famous work of art, which would it be and why?
Nightshifts: I’d hate to compare to any great work of art, but the inspiration to finish and release it was definitely fuelled by The Alchemist. The book made me realize how important it was to follow what I love.