Gigi: Who is Almost Owen? How would you describe your music genre?
Almost Owen: I am! I used to release music under my given name. I'd went to book shows with my band, my good friend and longtime collaborator (who will remain nameless) would excitedly post about it on social media.
Sadly, he would more often than not horribly misspell my name. I started to think that if my closest friends were having trouble, I'd be doomed when it came to people who didn't know me.
My parents almost named me Owen. I also think there's something cool and aspirational about almost being something.
Gigi: Where do you get inspiration for your music?
AO: I write best when I'm moving. New environments breed new perspectives, and a rekindled sense of wonder about the world. That's the place that I always want to write from.
Gigi: Do you write all the songs?
AO: Yes! I write, produce, and play *most* of the instruments on my records. I also have a number of close friends who I cowrite with for my project. I wrote "What You Do To Me" with my buddy Julian Beechko at his apartment in North Hollywood.
The next video I'm putting out is a song I wrote called "Tell Me What You Want". It features some amazing singers and musicians so stay tuned.
Gigi: How many instruments can you play & what are they?
AO: I sing, play drums, and a bit of piano and guitar. In third grade a learned a little bit about the recorder - but found it pretty unsatisfying (and a little silly), and haven't touched it since.
Gigi: Tell me about your experience shooting at Converse.
AO: I loved it! Converse has this really cool program called Rubber Tracks. They'd select artists and give them free studio time.
I have a pretty solid recording studio in my home. It isn't pretty though. I decided the best use of our time there was to make a video.
I got my crew together and we played two songs. I'm planning on turning this into a pretty regular thing - I'll definitely keep you posted!
Gigi: Where is your favorite place to play?
AO: Wallys Jazz Cafe in the South End was the first bar I ever went to. I think I was like 12 years old. I have a long standing love affair with that place.
Other places I like a great deal - rated from rowdy to tame: Capo, Great Scott, The Lizard Lounge.
I play Wednesday nights at Luckys Lounge in Southie, as well as Fridays and Saturdays at Ocean Prime in the Seaport.
Full show schedules are available on my website almostowenmusic.com
Gigi: What do you like to do when you are not jamming out?
AO: I'm embarrassed to say this - but I'm not so sure these days! I don't think work/life balance is a thing that really exists for artists.
I have been low key learning how to paint. I suck at it, but am getting better little by little.
Gigi: Who are a couple of your musical idols?
AO: There are so many! Growing up I was obsessed with Bob Dylan, The Band, and the Beatles. I was also crazy about Bill Evans, Keith Jarrett, and Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers.
More recently, I've been listening to a lot of Anderson. Paak (gotta show love to drummers who sing), and am lucky to have a bunch of contemporaries like Nick Hakim, Daywave, and Thirdstory that are totally killing it right now and inspire the hell out of me.