Let's Get To Know Sandor Gavin
1- Where did you grow up?
I was born and raised in Ann Arbor Michigan. It was a really nice place to grow up. As I got older, I spent a lot of my time in the Detroit area. This is where I began performing music in the goth/darkwave scene there. 2- What is one of the first songs you remember liking as a kid?
My first favorite song was A-Ha - Take on Me. I think the song and video just really had a big impact on my young psyche. I was also obsessed with Pump up the Volume by Maars and Oh Yeah by Yello. 3- What influenced you to get into music?
I grew up in a musical family. My parents ran a small opera company, and I was on stage from an early age. It was just something that was always part of my life. I didn’t have the voice or passion for opera and was always more drawn to synthesized sounds. 4- At what age did you start playing/singing?
My parents tell me I was always singing. Even as a toddler. Just humming tunes and making up random melodies. I really started recording music as a teenager though, around 13 or 14. I started out playing bass and eventually bought a cheap Casio keyboard and an Alesis HR-16 drum machine and would record back and forth between two tape decks. 5- If you could go back in time, what advice would you give to yourself after finishing school?
I would just encourage myself to keep at it. I think the journey has made me who I am so I don’t think I would want to change it. I do, however, wish I had started focusing more on promotion at a younger age. I think a mistake a lot of artists make is in thinking the songs will eventually just catch on. As an artist it is just as important to work on an effective promotional strategy as it is on making great music if you want it to be heard. 6- What are some of your favorite songs at the moment?
It’s so hard to pick favorites because different days call for different vibes. I’ve been in a mood for Naked Eyes a lot lately. I think they are a really underappreciated 80’s band. Promises Promises is definitely a current favorite. I’ve been jamming to Sandra’s Secret Land a lot too. As far as modern music I have been on a chillwave kick lately. Maybe it’s the hot summer days. But lounging around to Hotel Pools’ album Palmscapes has been a summer '21 fav for sure!
7- Do you listen to your own music?
Of course! I usually listen the most while the music is in the pre-release stage. By the time the songs are released though I’ve repeated them so much looking for things to correct that I’m usually pretty much done for a while. It is always fun to go back and just revisit an older album. Songs are kind of like a diary, you always remember how you were feeling or what was going on at the time you wrote them. I do avoid playing my songs when I’m hanging out with people though. I always find it weird when you’re around people and one of your own songs comes on a playlist or something. I usually skip them in that scenario… 8- Which musician would you like to collaborate with next?
Overall, I just love to collaborate. It’s great to work with an artist who challenges you to try something new. Each collaboration I have done has pushed me in new directions. For instance, I did some collaborations with both Villarosso and Horizons 1984 who had tracks that forced me to hold my notes longer. Now I’m finding I have been adding more vocal sustain to new material. So, it’s hard to say which artist I would like to work with specifically, it’s more about the piece of music challenging me in some way. That said, I think artists like Droid Bishop or Fred Falke would be cool to work with as they tend to pull out more funky rhythms. But I am open to explore, if you’re reading this and want to collab, drop me a line, you never know what the next banger will be or who it will be with! 9- What is one of your favorite memories so far in your music career?
I have been more of a studio musician these days as a solo artist, but I always look back fondly on my time performing live in my previous bands. There is certainly something magical about connecting with an audience live. This one time, I remember performing a cover of the Lightning Seeds “Pure” I had gotten a whole room of folks to sit on the floor and hold hands. It was a moment!
10- What advice would you give to someone that is just starting to get into music?
Find your sound, what makes you unique and lean into it. Oftentimes, I think musicians can get lost in all of the feedback you can receive when trying to get your music out there. This can cause them to try to adapt their sound to what they think people will like or even stop producing altogether. At the end of the day, you need to enjoy what you’re producing. Do it for yourself and what makes you happy. Fitting in is overrated. Van Gogh once said, “Normality is a paved road: It's comfortable to walk but no flowers grow.”