Adrian West Has a True Musical Compass: the Interview, Oct. 30, 2020

Ask Adrian what kind of music The Adrian West Band  plays, and he'll say "Yes." Or if he's feeling cocky, he'll say "Good."

The longer answer: original acoustic rock that sounds like Paul Simon meets Dave Matthews, plus rock & jazz covers and instrumentals. The full quartet features vocal harmonies, guitar, electric violin, bass, drums, alto sax, and a bit of live "looping”. Duo and trio formats also happen.

Born and raised in Montreal, Adrian is an exciting performer to watch. A gifted vocalist, he moves effortlessly between guitar & violin, sometimes using live looping to add layers of sound and intrigue to his songs. With a knack for language that's simple yet poetic, he's not afraid to tackle difficult topics in his songwriting. "Safe Streets" tells an allegory about police violence, "Close Your Eyes" laments the beauty bias that pervades mass media, while "Senses" entreats you to appreciate your senses while you can. But Adrian doesn't take any of this stuff too seriously; his lyrics belie a sense of hope and a touch of whimsy.

Adrian started playing violin at 4, and in his teens he studied classical violin at the McGill Conservatory of Music in Montreal. He later learned to play drums and guitar, and developed his vocal and songwriting technique.

He moved in 1995 to the San Francisco Bay Area, where as a sideman violinist he began supporting local Bay Area bands, playing some of the area's better-known venues including the Fillmore, Yoshi's SF (main stage), Slim’s, The Independent and The Sweetwater.

In 2005 he formed the Adrian West Band, which has performed steadily at venues and festivals all over the Bay Area. In 2011, he released his first full-length CD, Chameleons and Butterflies. In 2019 he released his second full-length CD, The Human Touch.

In 2017-2018 Adrian combined his love of music with his love of science in a multimedia show called An Evening of Music & Science. It wove his music with synchronized videos and presentations on the subject of how life began on Earth. The show was presented twice in Berkeley at The Monkey House, and three times in San Ffrancisco at the Shelton Theater.

Comments

A delicious interview! I will share widely :) Thank you for your talent Adrian. Thanks to Pieter for hosting.

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