What happens when you mix the unique characteristics of a stone like onyx with pop music? You get Onicks, an up-and-coming artist originally from San Fernando Valley who is making his way into Orange County. The edgy, glamorous artist talks to OC Weekly about his road to the world of fame and music. Check him out at OC Pride this weekend ($10, 8800 Irvine Center Dr.).
OC Weekly: How did you find your passion for creating music?
Onicks: My parents nurtured and sewed music into my skin starting at an extremely young age. They used to sing me to sleep and sing to wake me up. I had tapes and a tape player long before any of my friends and they always made fun of me because the headphones I used were too large for my head! But I was obsessed with the sounds people could make, and it stayed with me until I could make them myself.
How did you come up with the name "Onicks"?
My grandmother's favorite stone is black onyx, and as a child, I loved the look and feel to it. It was dark and beautiful. So one day, I was at a designer's store looking at fabrics, came across a set of black onyx brass knuckles and it came to me. I am Onicks.
Your music genre is very unique, how would you label it?
I like to represent the dark side of pop music. My music comes from my life (not to say that my life is dark), but I have always been strange. It is all extremely hard hitting, and I like to mix styles such as dub step and guitars. Music for the twisted side in everyone.
There was a time in your life when you lived in Colorado, and you became the most followed person on Twitter in that state. How did that make you feel? What kind of feedback were people giving you?
I remember receiving an email from a friend of mine, who works for Twitter, congratulating me and my heart rate went out of control. It was one of those small milestones that happen before something tremendous!
How has your career as an artist changed since you moved back to California?
I gained professionalism in every way possible. I turned my garage band beats into anthems and have molded myself into a character with a more clear purpose. This place breathes art, music and success, and it has been a dream to work with the people I have met.
Who has been your biggest influence music wise?
Michael Jackson is the king in my world. If you study his musical career, you'll notice that every single music video, performance and song he created has a heart, soul, body and brain! He had a hand in every single process and made sure that he was the best. His style and voice will never be heard again, and I have learned so much from him.
What are some of the biggest goals that you hope to accomplish as an artist?
I want to follow in the footsteps of "the greats" and re-define the word unique. Inspiring youth to break down walls and take over the world is something that needs to happen. We cannot simply write music and sing. As an artist, I have set the highest standards for myself, and I will always do what it takes to accomplish the world.
What is your affiliation with Pride OC? How do you think it'll benefit your career?
I will be giving a very insane performance at this year's Pride OC, filled with makeup, fur and adrenalin. Pride OC is a great opportunity for me to perform in a city that I have not yet seen.
What can fans expect from you at Pride OC?
My fans can expect a massive show with a sinister feel to it. I like to use a lot of props and storytelling choreography to push the performance forward. I have created a show that will stand out! Here is a little giveaway: I will be performing two brand-new songs and one of them involves gas masks and bullets.
What is your favorite part about performing live? What are some of your memorable and most interesting experiences you've had while onstage?
I thoroughly enjoy the process of creating a show from scratch. I love to freak people out a bit and stare in their eyes while onstage. It feels like you're in a feisty relationship with the fans while you are serenading them.
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Are you currently working on a new album or recording new songs?
I am finishing up my EP. It is called Super Villain, and I'll be releasing two more songs ("The Takeover" and "Torture") before I announce the official date.
Is there anything else you would like to say or add?
Please visit my website at www.onicks.com, and I cannot wait to meet everyone at OC Pride. Let's take over, my minions!