An Interview With Patrick Tabaks
A new album release from Patrick Tabaks breeds a combination of tasteful genres that melt together into one massive record that brings pop, rock, piano based power ballads, and tons of heart and soul.
The Lost My Mind album is packed with alluring vocals, plenty of honesty and a beautifully descriptive lyrical approach that paints vivid pictures.
The record showcases a young artist's wonderful ability for not only songwriting but singing with such a gorgeous style that it feels warming.
The release goes through phases and features string sections, awesome changes and arrangements, and an absolutely passionate performance all around.
Tabaks has a bit of a crooner voice and bringing that into different settings that feature acoustic guitars, and contemporary rock with a little edge really gives this record tons of flavor.
Quite a textured and wild palette, Lost My Mind boasts a metric ton of heart and feels almost like a concept record of sorts.
There is more pop sensibility throughout this record's course than you can handle and it's all so addictive and tasteful you forget the artist is only 17.
It's a mature sounding release and really leaves you in awe half the time.
This was a massive album that really shined and showed range and presence for Tabaks as an artist.
With such a great release , we wanted to have a talk with the artist to find out where this all came from and where it may be going.
Here's what happened.
TSWS: So let's start with the Lost My Mind album. This record has an array of
wonderful songwriting and styles all with a great pop sensibility. Where did
this record come from?
I started writing the songs for Lost My Mind about 2 years ago. It started off as more
of a hobby and I didn’t know that I wanted to make a whole album at the time, but as
time went on and I wrote more and more songs I realized, that I wanted to release
these songs and I already had a few of them written, so the logical thing to do was to
make it into an album. All these songs were produced in my own little home studio. I
am glad that I had the opportunity to produce them at home with professional gear,
as it made me feel more expressive and not afraid to experiment, as opposed to
recording in an unfamiliar studio. This album was really made possible by all the
people that were involved in it, the instrumental session players, mix engineers from
many countries, master engineers and people who I was learning from. Without
them, this album wouldn’t be the same.
TSWS: How did this all start for you?
For me everything started when I was just six or seven years old. I really enjoyed
singing and so I started going to a music school to learn how to sing properly and
correctly. I had the best teacher as a kid that I could ever ask for. She understood
me, listened to me and gave me a lot of opportunities to perform at very high-
standing institutes, for example, the opera. I was learning classical music education
at the time and performing basically everywhere I wanted to perform. It was an
absolute dream come true, but sadly it had to come to a stop when I had my voice
break. Voice break is a natural cause in the vocal cords that makes it really hard to
sing and you shouldn’t sing when you are in the middle of it. All boys have this at
around the age of 12 – 14. Although I wasn’t able to sing, I still wanted to do
something with music. That is when I decided that I want to write my own music and
perform it when I got my voice back. It started off more as an experiment, I didn’t
really know what I was doing and if I would be any good in it, but when I sat down at
the piano to write a song for the first time, it just clicked and I felt the love for music in
a completely new way.
TSWS: I'm hearing some different styles blended in this album. Who are some of your
biggest musical influences?
There isn’t really a specific influence for this album it’s more like a collective
influence from different artists as well as genres. As I said before, I come from a
classical music background so while all songs have this pop feel to them, some were
made with a pinch of classical in them, for example, “Gonna Be Gone” and “Suffer
For You”. I never really had any education in jazz, but I really love the tones that this
genre gives off, so I wanted to try and make “jazzy” songs as well such as “Like
Home” and “Stay For A Minute”. As for which artists inspired this album, I would
have to say that mostly they were Ed Sheeran and Shawn Mendes. These guys are
my idols and I love their style and feel in music, so they were a big inspiration. The
only song which wasn’t really inspired by anyone is “All My Praise”. It was very
experimental and from the top of the head. I had a great time making this song with
the producer Ryan Prewett as we were going for a lo-fi-y sound.
TSWS: Can we expect any music videos coming from you anytime soon?
I have released a music video for the song “Are You Even Real”. It has a cool 80s
film vibe to it, and it is about the fear of the afterlife. We filmed it a few months ago
and the film crew was absolutely great! They were very professional, and I had a
blast filming it. You can watch it here:
I will also be releasing a post-album song on October 15 th that I have been working
on in the past few months together with producer Tim Lars. It is called “Country Side”
and it is about the nostalgic feeling of summer parties far away from the city. We
filmed a music video for it this summer in a party in the countryside. The video will
come out October 22 nd and it was filmed together with my real-life friends, and
everything was captured on spot, so it will be very personal and authentic. As for any
music videos regarding the album, we’ll probably be filming a music video for the
song “Lost My Mind” together with Elizabeth Luka, but I can’t give an exact date yet.
TSWS: What's next for you as an artist?
Right now, I am working on a lead role in a new musical written by Janis Lusens
called “Star Child”. It is based on the Oscar Wilde story “Star Child”. It is a big step
for me, as I am studying the musical genre right now and it is my first lead role in a
newly written musical. The premier will happen on November 14 th at the Riga VEF
cultural center. I am also currently writing and recording new songs that I intend to
release in 2022.
TSWS: What are you doing when you're NOT working on music?
I really like to take it easy when I’m not working on music, as it takes a lot of energy
for me. I personally love going fishing. It is a time where I can get my mind off things
and just focus on being in nature, on a boat or on the coast and get excited when I
feel my fishing pole trembling. In winter I usually go ice skating or snowboarding. It is
a great activity to release any stress and get some peace. As for what I am doing
most of the time when I am not working on music is probably studying. It’s nothing
interesting really, but it is something that I think everybody has to do in high school.
TSWS: Who are you listening to right now?
Currently, in my headphones there is a song playing called “Boy” by Maisie Peters. I
recently discovered her and her music, and it is absolutely great! She has such a
unique voice and a lot of talent.
I listen to all sorts of music and artists, but right now, I’d say my most listened artists
would be Avery Wilson who is an R&B artist, and his style and vocal technique is out
of this world, Leyla Blue who has very interesting songs and productions, and last,
but not least the already mentioned artists Shawn Mendes and Ed Sheeran.
TSWS: How do you write songs? Is it lyrics first or music?
How does it work for you?
There is no wrong way to write songs. For some people it is easier to start with lyrics,
for some it’s music first then lyrics and I personally know some people who just skip
this phase and go straight into the DAW (Digital Audio Workshop) and find sounds
they like and come up with the music and lyrics on the go. The story is, if it works for
you, then do it that way, you shouldn’t listen to other people who want to teach you
the “right” way to write music. For me personally, I usually start with music, more
specifically – melodies. I rarely sit down and start writing songs, because when I
TRY to come up with something new, it doesn’t come to me that easy and usually it
isn’t the best song overall. I could be just randomly walking somewhere or making
food or really doing anything and suddenly I’ll hear a melody in my head that sounds
amazing. Most of the time, I’m not at the piano or I am not in the mood to start writing
the song, so I just pull up my phone and sing in the melody in my voice memos.
Another thing for me is that I can’t really “push” writing songs. I need to want to write
the song, only then it’ll come out as good as I want it. When I do sit down at the
piano or the guitar, I usually start by finding the right chords and structuralizing the
song and then I move onto the verse/pre-chorus/chorus, depending on where the
original melody is placed. After finishing the musical side, I move on to the lyrics.
When I’m happy with how it sounds all together, the next step for me is the
production, where if I work alone, I’ll leave more time to experiment with the
instruments, sounds and plugins, and If I work with a producer, they usually do the
experimenting themselves and we agree on how we want to make this song sound.
If I do work with a producer, I’m present throughout the whole production phase as I
always have something to say and something to change, I hope that this hasn’t been
too big of a problem with the producers that I have worked with, as I can sometimes
be a pain in the ass haha. Lastly there is the mixing and mastering phase, which I
don’t do myself, but I have worked with mixing engineers all over the world and it
usually takes them 3-4 revisions to finally get the sound and energy that I want. So,
as you can see, it’s a long process, but I love doing it and for me, it is worth the time
TSWS: Will you be putting any focus on live performances anytime soon?
As I said before, I will be performing a few shows as the lead role for the musical
“Star Child” live, but other than that, I currently don’t have any live performances
booked, but I hope to find the opportunity and time to perform my own songs live as
TSWS: What inspires you to write really?
The album Lost My Mind was all about what was growing inside me my whole life. All
the experiences and feelings I felt that I couldn’t talk about in person, but I could talk
about them through music, because it was easier for me to talk about them that way.
Every song’s subject was some sort of feeling or memory that had happened in the
past. But the songs that I am writing now are mostly about how I feel in the present,
whether it is about a girl, friends, my weaknesses or problems that I think should be
addressed through art and music as well. For me, writing about relationships and/or
crushes is the easiest, because the emotions are very strong and the lyrics just fly
out on the paper, but this can also happen with different subjects it just depends on
what I want to talk about when I am writing the song.
TSWS: This album feels like a pretty big undertaking. Is there any advice you'd have
for other artists out there?
I am only just starting to understand what the music industry is and how to operate in
it, but if I had to give advice to my younger self, I’d say that you can’t make
everybody happy and not everybody will like your songs, so don’t try to make songs
that you think everyone else will like. Make songs that you like and that you want to
make. Don’t be afraid to take some time and experiment and find your sound, that is
what’ll make your music sound like you. And most importantly, do what works for
you. I don’t believe that there is a universal and correct way to make music, so how
you start making music should be up to you. When you find the way that you like to
make music, the process will be so much more pleasant, easier and will give better
TSWS: Before we go, what would you like to say to any fans of the music.
I love you all guys and I’m so happy seeing more and more of you starting to listen to
my music. You give me and my music purpose and I thank you for that! I will try my
best to bring you more songs in the near future and maybe see you in person. Stay