When describing his new album, Big Trouble, Richard Andrew, aka Outasight, is understandably excited, but just like his lyrics, he has a way of turning a phrase in that description that will get anyone on board.
“This record, right off the bat, people are going to get it,” he said. “It’s a pop record, it’s a funk record with horns everywhere, it has sunshine blowing through the speakers.”
“Sunshine blowing through the speakers?” If that doesn’t have you wanting to see what that’s all about, why are you listening to music in the first place? Of course, that kind of music comes part and parcel with Andrew’s move from New York to Los Angeles a year ago, and while it was an adjustment for a lifelong east coaster, it was a quick one that paid dividends in the studio.
“I took a couple months to get adjusted on a personal level,” he said of relocating to the City of Angels. “I had grown up with so many friends and family members around me, and I’m still friends with guys I’ve known since I was nine years old. I’ve got such a huge crew of people around me in New York, so I got out of my comfort zone. But as I started to have some friends out there and got more and more comfortable, I think what draws you into LA is the lifestyle. I found a beautiful home, spent a lot of time outside, soaking in the sunshine, and it made me appreciate things more. I like slowing down a little bit. I think for a long time I was always in a rush, so it took a little bit of time, but in the long run it was very beneficial.”
The way he sees it, you can hear it in the songs on Big Trouble.
“I naturally ended up making this record,” Andrew said. “I just feel like it’s where I’m at in my life, in my time, my headspace. I really fell right into the lifestyle. It’s a more laid-back environment, and it helps me creatively and as a person. I spent a lot of time in the studio, just by myself making the record. I worked with extremely talented people, but I recorded myself and pushed myself to go further and further. I spent a lot of time with it, so it’s really exciting to put the music out and start getting people’s responses.”
If the response to the first single “The Wild Life” is any indication, it looks like another smash is in store for the man who dominated radio, clubs and television with “Tonight is the Night” in 2011. If you didn’t hear that song somewhere, you were probably in a cave somewhere without any outside world contact. It was that prevalent everywhere, and that catchy. As far as pure pop goes, it doesn’t get much better, with the platinum single hitting number 14 on the pop charts.
“Any time you can have a song that resonates to a point where you’re able to see the world and hear it on the radio and have all these great things happen to you, it’s amazing,” he said. “At the end of the day, I always consider myself a pop artist. I’ve never tried to overthink it and be like ‘I need to make a hit single today,’ but you’re always thinking that you just want to make great music that everyone can enjoy. So when you have a moment like that, it’s an incredible feeling and it’s very rewarding, especially since I wrote the song. A lot of times in pop music, it’s very manufactured, and there will be eight songwriters on a song, and the artist may have written a word, or didn’t write any. And that’s fine, I have nothing bad to say about that, but I sat in a little studio and wrote that song myself. That’s exactly what I was feeling at that moment, and then for it to go and become a platinum song, it’s very rewarding and I’m appreciative that other people loved it. It’s why I do what I do.”
Most artists only get one of those, and even more get none. It’s just the way the business goes. So for Outasight to invade listeners’ ears with “The Wild Life” is the sign of a young man who knows his craft and knows how to express it in a way that breaks through to a wide audience. Andrew is also someone who does his thing without thinking of the pop charts. That’s even more impressive.
“When I made ‘The Wild Life,’ I wasn’t in the studio thinking, ‘This is going to be like ‘Tonight is the Night.’’ I had no idea. Things just fell into place and people wanted to start using the song.”
There will likely be more to come from Big Trouble, which seems accurate, since the old adage is that good things happen in threes. But Andrew wants to alter that sentiment a bit.
“I got a lot more than three,” he laughs. “I’m thinking at least nine – three times three.”
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