We had the good fortune of connecting with Dan Barracuda and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dan, is there a quote or affirmation that’s meaningful to you?
My favorite quote is one is by Erich Heller: “Be careful how you interpret the world; it is like that.” It’s so simple but unbelievably true and profound. I think our interpretation of the world fluctuates throughout the years, months, and even days. We can’t control the events that happen to us, but we can control and work on how we respond to them. However you perceive the world is how the world is – to you. This quote reminds me of one by Ken Keyes Jr., which says: “A loving person lives in a loving world. A hostile person lives in a hostile world: everyone you meet is your mirror.” All we really need is within us, but often times we get carried away in a scarcity mindset and can start to look at the world with tunnel vision. When I feel something like this start to happen, I know it’s time for a pattern-interruption. Take a break, go for a long walk, pick up a new book, watch a different kind of movie or documentary you wouldn’t usually watch, call up a friend, play an instrument, meditate, journal – doing something different gives you perspective. Different people give you perspective! A slight shift in perspective can do wonders to your temperament and also productivity. Remember that however you are looking at the world is due to how YOU are interpreting it. Powerful quote!
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
It’s been quite a journey as a music-man over the last 12 years! The harder the music industry gets for independent artists, the more skills one has to develop in order to survive. My initial guitar-playing and songwriting skills had to expand to not just singing, playing bass, and learning how to program drums, but also video editing, self-promotion, social media & content marketing, mixing, mastering, arranging, audio editing, and networking. I’m now at a point where I make my income mixing/mastering for other musicians I meet online. The original music that I self-produce serves as the basis for my engineering and production portfolio, and that has eventually led to working with other artists on their music. As far as my original music goes, I have released 4 albums and 3 singles since 2016, which you can find on Spotify/iTunes/Amazon/Bandcamp/YouTube etc. (under Dan Barracuda). My sound revolves around psychedelic and progressive rock, folk, world, and alternative. Though my roots were in hard rock/metal, it was when I re-discovered the genius of the Beatles, Pink Floyd, and Simon & Garfunkel that I really started caring about the message behind my songs, chord progressions, and interesting song structures. My parents would always have classic rock on when I was growing up, but a good friend of mine in college showed me the beauty of this older music, and it continues to be the biggest influence on me today. Throughout the past decade, I’ve also been involved in several other music projects. These include co-creating/directing a dream-rock production (think Blue Man Group meets Pink Floyd & Tool), a live entertainment duo that regularly performs for weddings & corporate events, multiple rock bands, film scoring projects, a silent-film live music ensemble, a children’s band, and an electronic duo. It’s been a wild ride! I wouldn’t have it any other way. These days, since I’ve mainly been producing and engineering music, I’ve realized how passionate I am about helping bring other people’s music to life. Because of such great technological advancements in the music world, we have the tools to make truly incredible sounding music out of the comfort of our homes. There’s a lot to be learned, but I want to be there helping musicians carry out their artistic visions. It’s important to them, and it’s important to the world.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Interesting question for me, given that I’ve only lived here in NYC since Jan 2020 and 90% of my time here has been quarantined! There are certain restaurants and locations that I love, such as Clementine’s in Fort Greene (Brooklyn), Joe’s Pizza (West Village), Ras Plant Based in Crown Heights (Brooklyn) and Father Knows Best in Bushwick (Brooklyn).
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Of course! Here are key people I’d like to shoutout: Erica Baptiste: Fine Artist, Senior Art Director, Graphic Design, Album Artwork, Photographer http://www.ericabaptisteart.com/ Ian Hayes: Actor, Musician, Model, Voiceover Artist https://www.ianjhayes.com/ Niagara Moon: Musician, Podcast Host, Music Marketer https://www.niagaramoonmusic.com/
Other: Professional feedback platform: https://www.patreon.com/danbarracuda