HWCH Q&A: AikJ
The word on being a musician from Hard Working Class Heroes’ act AikJ
AikJ tells us what’s what about his life in music. He’s one of the 100 or so acts playing the Hard Working Class Heroes festival and convention, next weekend. You can catch him at Tengu Upstairs on Friday night at 8.50pm
If you were to point an Irish Times reader to the best example of your work, what would it be and why?
“The best example of my work and creativity that is currently released is my single “Suite Life”"
Why did you get involved with making music in the first place? Has it lived up to expectations?
“Got into music because I wanted to do something that I cant wait to wake up in the morning and do. I love being creative and making music is something that challenges my mind and creativity. The feeling I get when I write, sing and perform; it has definitely lived up to my expectations because the success I’ve gotten through music and work ethic makes me feel like absolutely anything is possible and that I’m doing the right thing.”
What was your experience of music at school and in the education system?
“I have no educational experience on music. I’ve always been able to sing, I just didn’t know it till I got old enough. Kinda figured things out as I go and learned things organically which made it more fun to do.”
What’s the best piece of advice you got when you were starting out on this path?
“Believe in yourself more than others do, and don’t give up”
What advice would you give to other bands or those who want to be in a band or make music?
“I would say first of all believe in your abilities, seek knowledge in all areas of your craft, don’t try to be the smartest in the room and listen more, work with people and as a team. Practice, practice, practice.”
Your favourite Irish venue to play and why?
“Whelan’s because it was the first place I got my first encore request”
Do you still have to do other stuff to make a living? If so, what stuff? Does this frustrate you?
“I have to work part time, which is a little stressful, but it’s a compromise and it motivates me to work harder.”
Who was the last Irish act you saw and where/when?
“I saw Kendrick Lamar at Longitude this summer. Pretty amazing energy from the crowd and the band was tight.”
If you’d one piece of advice for Heather Humphries, the minister for arts, about support for Irish music and musicians, what would it be?
“Take a closer look to some of us you haven’t yet heard about.”
Aside from your upcoming show at HWCH, what else are you working on at present?
“Making more music to make people feel good”