When I heard I had the opportunity to interview new star, singer/songwriter, Josh Charles, I felt as if I were about to interview the next Alicia Keys, or the next Lady Ga Ga. I don't mean in terms of musical style but I felt as if I were discovering someone who was about to be huge. That's why I chose, Josh Charles for this week's Someone to Watch.
Josh, how would you describe your musical style?
On my new album "Love, Work & Money" I call it Notown which is New Orleans meets Motown. I was mentored by Dr. John and grew up with the sounds of Motown in my house and made my own musical gumbo from it.
You were a bit of a child prodigy, has music always been your passion?
Ever since the age of 8, I have slept, ate, and breathed music. It is my biggest passion in life and could never be without it.
Out of all the genres you've played, what is your favorite style of music?
I love playing New Orleans piano, but I also love rock and roll. I spent many years honing my craft as a jazz musician and always hold jazz close to my heart
What was it like to know your life was in danger with Hurricane Katrina?
Fortunately for me, I was able to evacuate before Katrina struck the city. I was very fortunate because we all know what happened to the folks who weren't able to leave.
You slummed it in New York City, playing in bars and in the underbelly of the city, was there any point where you felt like giving up?
I honestly believe that you can't give up in order to do what it is I do. There have been hard times, very hard times but it only makes you stronger when you use those experiences for your art. This album is all about the same trials and tribulations that all of us have gone through or are going through in life whether it be finding a new job, trying to pay the bills, looking for love, losing love, waiting for something special. I believe that i was meant to do this and I have never given the idea of giving up any thought whatsoever.
Having spent so much time in New Orleans and now New York, which is your favorite?
That's a tough question. My formative years as a musician were spent in NYC and I have a deep love for New York even though I think it's changed tremendously over the last few years. I do have to say that i honestly feel that my heart belongs to New Orleans.
Josh will be having an album release party shortly in New York City. Here are the details:
Debut Album Release Party and Performance for 'Love, Work, & Money.'
'Love, Work & Money' features ten songs, nine written or co-written by Charles, plus a funky, galloping cover of the Jimmy Cliff classic "The Harder They Come." The album was recorded with members of Dr. John's backing band, primarily at famed Piety Street Studios in New Orleans. It pairs Charles' deep love for that city's unique piano tradition with a knack for soulful, sophisticated arrangements that would do Billy Preston proud.
The album was recorded with members of Dr. John's backing band, and a few of the talented musicians heard on the album will be joining Josh on stage.
WHERE: City Winery- 155 Varick St (between Spring st and Vandam st)
To Purchase Tickets, got to http://www.CityWinery.com
WHEN: Monday, February 15, 2010; 8.00PM