Californian born Josh Mejia is a singer, songwriter and producer.
The 26 year old was brought up in Hesperia California with his family, now he works full time in the music industry.
Here the rising star chats about his childhood, his first music memories, and also his future ambitions.
What was your childhood like?
I grew up in a very conservative, suburban town in southern California, that at the time wasn’t very populated. It was a good place to grow up. Quiet, safe, and somewhat sheltered.
What are you earliest memories of music?
Probably the music in Disney movies. Which I watched frequently as a child.
My parents didn’t listen to the radio very often which meant that my exposure to music was limited. My mother would have us sing along with her in the car whenever we would go somewhere together. Mostly church songs.
Who are your musical influences?
I draw influence from all styles of music, from classical to hardcore, Hip Hop to Acoustic, Jazz, Folk, you name it. It really just depends on what I’m feeling at the time. The only music I’ve never been able to get into is country and metal. Not my cup of tea.
Growing up I was really into bands such as Blink 182, Green Day, Sugarcult, Dashboard Confessional, The Used, etc. Which really influenced my music early on, and has since continued to shape my approach to music.
Later I got super into hip hop artist such as Drake, Kanye West, Lil Wayne, etc. As you can imagine, this completely changed the way I produced music, experimenting more with those types of beats, was something I had never done before.
These days I’ll listen to a lot of trip hop, experimental type of music. To name a few-Flume, Branchez, Marian Hill, Sylvan Esso, Alina Baraz and Galimatias.
When did you realize you could produce?
I started recording my own music at the age of 16 on a Boss 8 track recorder. Even though I was technically “producing” music, I didn’t really harness my ability until years later.
When did you realize you wanted to be a professional producer?
My goal has always been to be a recording artist first and producer second. I do enjoy producing for other artists, and realized that I could do it at the age of 20 when I first started producing more beat oriented music, rather than the acoustic stuff I had been working on before.
What artists have you worked with?
Mainly independent artist.
Who would you like to work with in the future?
I would like to work with all the household names in contemporary music.
Do you write all of you own materiel?
Yes, I started singing and writing songs at the age of 14 and since have never stopped.
What is your opinion on talent shows like The X Factor?
I have no opinion, I do not watch them.
What do you think about free music streaming? Do you think it damages the music industry?
Yes and No.
I think the problem with free music streaming is it damages the view we have on music. If something is expected to be free it loses value in the minds of the consumer and the artist.
Now-a-days people don’t want to pay for music, so they don’t. Additionally artists are feeling like they need to give their music away for free in order to have any impact on the masses, or even to get people to listen to what they have in the first place.
Looking at that from a business perspective you can see why the industry has taken such a hard hit.
If I’m a shoe company and I want to sell my shoes for a certain price but every other shoe company is giving there product away for free, I’m never going to make any profit. I can’t compete with that.
The biggest problem is, People don’t look at music like its a product.
That being said, its definitely gotten better from where it was a few years ago, when all people did was download music illegally. There can be advantages to free music streaming. At least now people can listen for free and the artist will still get some compensation for it.
We’re always figuring out new ways to make money, and I think that eventually they’ll get it back to where it used to be. Its just going to take time.
If you could change one thing about the music industry what would it be?
My status in it.
Apart from music, what other things do you enjoy?
Family, fitness, nature. growing as a person in every area of my life.
What would you like to have achieved in the next ten years?
I would like to be established as a household name in music. Apart from that, there are various businesses ventures that I will be pursuing, both inside and outside the entertainment industry.
You can follow Josh on Twitter @joshmejiamusic