Adam Lasher is a contestant on this year's 14th annual American Idol series hosted by the infamous Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban and Harry Connick Jr. He began playing piano at 5 but it wasn't until he picked up the guitar in 6th grade that his love for music flourished. Lasher taught himself to sing in high school- it was a slow a painful process he notes. For college he attended Berkelee School of Music in Boston studying guitar, music theory and most notably meeting the future Adam Lasher Band. There's no question that his appeal is wrapped in a combo of talent, gumption and good genes (did we mention Carlos Santana is his Uncle?).
For the last 5 years he's lived throughout Orange County and LA playing a hybrid of rock, latin and jazzy blues at Tommy Bahama, The Cliff and Mozambique. You might have also caught him playing at last year's Decadence event for the Weekly. The humorous singer/songwriter has over 20 songs on iTunes with another album slated for release in 2015. Tune into American Idol, January 22nd, and become entranced with his performing of Rhianna's "Stay."
OC Weekly (Taylor Morgan): So, why music?
Adam Lasher: It's the only thing I've ever been good at. It's that mental hunger that doesn't go away. I wake up everyday thinking, what can I do to get ahead musically? It's also in my blood.
What was your first band name?
AL: Oh god! This is going to be embarrassing: Glass Hour, you know like the hour glass in The Wizard of Oz. Creative, right? We had another one called Ash Case because we played in a garage and everyone smoked too many cigarettes.
I feel like I just asked you what your old aim screen name was.
I will never tell you that! Just mix 7th grade with wrestler names. It was a name that didn't match my scrawny little self.
What's integral to the work of an artist?
I've learned recently that you don't always need validation and to be aware of why you are trying to validate yourself. The moment you censor yourself you are no longer creating true art. There's a quote from H.R. Giger, he did the artwork for the alien movies in the '80s, he said some people see my art and they're moved by it and some people think it's disgusting. The moment you worry about what someone else thinks you're not creating art, you're people pleasing. You're putting baby food on the radio so people will like it as apposed to giving people the vegetables that they want to hear. No one wanted to hear Jimi Hendrix or The Beatles, they didn't know what to do with it.
Why did you audition for Idol?
It's great exposure, I have a chance to tell my story and play music. It's so easy to talk crap about these shows but they're throwing spaghetti on a wall, trying to find someone they can sell just like the artist is showing up to sell themselves. So I try to show up, do the best that I can and deliver. If someone doesn't like a version of the song you do, that's okay. If someone hears your song in Kansas or New York, likes your music, buys it, feel something and it gives them a nostalgic feeling 5 year's later when they hear it again, then mission accomplished.
What's your goal in the music industry?
AL: To make music and support myself doing what I love. This is the first time I've ever had my own place! I can record there and I even have a spot of the beach. I look around and I'm like wow everything in here, every guitar or piece of furniture is because I play music. That's more valuable than having a house that's twice as big because I sell something I don't like. I won't ever have to learn how to tie a tie!
Unless Idol puts you in one!
I'll be wearing a bandana!