In Your Dreams | 2015 – On The Road To Triumph with R.O.M

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Since a new year is fast approaching now, many things have been running through my mind as to what I’d like either to have or see in 2015, whether that be: A bigger success in my blog (popularity, more viewers). Improvement in my skills. Opportunities to work with people I admire. Travelling. Happier days. Exciting moments. Being given roles to write.

More importantly, though, the year is still going, there can be something squeezed in to cap it off. I thought, why not throw in something? So I chose to share something I did not long ago, an interview. But before all of that I want to say that… One thing I would really love to see more of is people who have been working hard at their craft getting their big shot at success that they deserve.

Somebody I have had a friendship with for a while now, who I’ve myself seen grow musically now has a stamp – an identity which he has been shaping for years. I’ve seen that the music he has made has pretty much unravelled itself, taken the wheel and manifested, putting him in a great position. On SoundCloud, where he gives you his passion, his life, he has over the past couple of years showcased music [in a range of genre pitting from] R&B to Electronic. Clearly his talent has shown what he can do, and the credit received reflects that, just don’t be kid or misconstrued by the grand introduction & praise I pass to him. I know him as Rommel Donald, but to many others he is known by his music moniker, “R.O.M” – the 18 year old guy with the hand trademark, who is pretty hands on with his production game right now. He has definitely had a year of success, according to his excited words and that is what I was getting at about seeing people shine, he represents somebody who appreciates the blessings he has been given and I do wish more people with a dream or ambition could have that. Recently, I interviewed him – we had a fun conversation about his music, what he’s been up to in 2014 and [his] goals for next year. Hope you can enjoy!

LS:   

So, it’s been a hectic year [I’ve noticed], R.O.M! What’s been good with you thus far?  

R.O.M: 

Hey! Everything is just unexpected and awesome! This year I got found by the Captain of Spacey Vibes Music, DJ Complexion and had releases through FBR [and] it’s set to be a bright future with them! I [also] was interviewed by DJ Target and Sian Anderson of BBC 1xtra – which was awesome. I’ve been featured on [so many websites] and blogs and somehow in TA-KU’s guest mix for HYPETRAK – which still gets me hyped *he laughs*. I also managed to get a guest mix on Rinse FM (Rinse France) with FUTURONOSTRO and built a great following 

LS: 

Crazy… Seems like things are finally falling into place. From what I understand taken from previous conversations this is definitely no overnight success, right?  

R.O.M: 

Indeed, bro! I’ve actually been beat-making since [I was] 12, but producing since 15 – so it’s been a good 3 years trying to come up and finally starting to see some amazing results 

 

LS: 

For certain, and your SoundCloud has been picking up the pace too. Tell me what that feels like to see your music not only growing, but the fact there are people out there who KNOW about R.O.M, surely that’s something [to smile about] too, right? 

 

R.O.M: 

I can’t even explain! Sometimes I have low confidence [about life and certain situations] and so to see people all around the world appreciate my music, it feels like I’m doing something right and it feels great to be known for doing what I love and if it feels this great already. I have no idea what it’s going to feel like by next year! Very reassuring 

LS: 

It’s some fuel to drive you that extra mile. I was very keen to ask you about next year. With 2015 just around the corner, do you have any plans for collaborations or projects that people can look forward to hearing?  

R.O.M: 

Yeah! Big aspirations for next year! I have my Debut EP, “Dreams” on FBR coming out, guest mix on First Ear Radio, hopefully playing shows now since I recently jumped on the DJ scene – might be playing in Paris with NESS next year if things go well and hopefully with DJ Complexion, music related travels with my bro DH Productions. 3 things I’d love to happen next year 1) A release on Soulection 2) Reach 10k Follows and 3) Collab Project with WhispaWave and Invention  

 

LS: 

Some heavy stuff you got in mind there, for real. I do hope to see those makings come to life. Now, something I do want to hear you talk about is your practice of the music production as well as  the music industry – how you feel about it. Do you have a certain process, does there have to have been a spark of inspiration to want to create…what really drives you to the making of music?  

 

R.O.M: 

[Man,] I let the world be my inspiration, the way I think is absolutely crazy sometimes! There always has to be a reason, I can’t make music for nothing, it doesn’t feel right, there has to be a meaning behind every track for me. What drives me to make music is emotions and over thinking, I don’t like to tell people how I’m feeling so you’ll [just] hear it through my music and I always name the track relevant to how I feel for example: “I Ain’t Perfect” or “You Deserve Better” or how I feel about someone or something (notes “Beautiful” and “Your Everything”) so ALL my music is emotion driven! As to how I make it, I go through a different process every track (I might start with drums, or cutting up or manipulating samples or even Chord sequences), I don’t believe there is one set way of making music 

 https://soundcloud.com/rommel-2/you-deserve-better

LS: 

Ok, so my main big question to you: who are your main inspirations – who would you cite?  

 

R.O.M:  

(With excitement) Ooh! Has to be Soulection and Darker Than Wax!  

 

LS: 

What is the inspiration they hold for you?  

 

R.O.M: 

They are the reincarnation of Old Skool music for me, man! They bring those vibes and feelings that were in old school music and make it [the music] really creative. Darker Than Wax is more funky than Soulection, but I love that special unique vibe they bring and Soulection – if it weren’t for them, I honestly don’t know what would be happening to underground music and beats scene man! They inspire me to be yourself – not try fit in order to appeal to the mainstream… do what you feel, do what you love. I love that so much, because Old Skool music (especially Jazz and Funk) is like literally everything to me  

LS: 

I’m getting a lot of idea that you have a huge passion for music in general, and sense what genre taste you have. Does your music have a lot of influence from any genre in particular?  

Also what do you think about genre in music today? As far as originality goes, do you think that it has been stagnant, that there is a void, something missing that you’d like to see brought through? Anything you wish to contribute in future  

 

R.O.M: 

Music is my life man. I’m almost certain I wouldn’t even be here if it weren’t for music – that’s my release…it’s the only thing that keeps me sane. Favourite genres? Anything that sounds good, man! I can be listening to Heavy Metal one day, Technical Metal the next day, R&B, then be listening to Justin Bieber! Anything that sounds good! I don’t like this whole genres Idea ’cause it puts music in a box! In terms of originality, I have no idea man. Seems a lot of producers jump on a bandwagon of what’s popular at that time. What I want to contribute to the future? Good vibes, good music, music that people can feel and that Image isn’t everything. [I mean,] I have professional photos of me doing stupid faces, because that’s me! I’m not going to take some deep photo pretending I’m a deep guy [’cause] I’m basic as hell! *laughs*. Child-like mentality of “Everything is Possible”  

 

LS: 

I see you say you’re not fond of music being put in a box, speak about that for a moment. Is that something you feel strongly about regarding the way music is read by people, do you think it has an effect on the listening experience?  

 

R.O.M: 

Yeah, I feel very strongly about that! I feel it restricts the listener to so many other types of music. If you say you love music as much as you do, […then] you should be able to appreciate any kind of music. Some people say they love music but only listen to Heavy Rock and will never listen to anything else. You could be closing your ears to something beautiful by sticking to genres. Closing your mind to new inspiration, something different. Not saying you’d have to listen to every type of music out there, but at least appreciate it  

 

LS: 

Expanding on the whole genre topic, I’ll end it with this question. A lot is happening in music – genres changing, transcending. Do you feel that listeners (or even the artists/producers) expectations of what the music should sound like (based on the genre they stem from) are in any way eating away at potential of greater music, causing detriment to the culture rather than growth? 

 

R.O.M:  

Yes and No, [because] people are different. Some people like change, some people don’t. 

 https://soundcloud.com/rommel-2/in-your-eyes-free-dl

LS: 

For sure. Since it is early on for you… do you have a particular mark set for what you wish to achieve in the future, what would you say is your biggest goal?  

 

R.O.M: 

My biggest goal by far is to be a Session Musician and playing around the world. I love producing and all, but Guitar is what got everything started for me. Madison Square Garden, man. I’d love to DJ with Soulection, that is a huge goal that I hope will happen soon. I also want FBR and Kolossus Records to BLOW UP! Seems like London is taking over for the future beats scene at the minute  

 

LS: 

What’s the craziest thing that’s happened to you during the time of making music? That’s been of help to you  

 

R.O.M: 

 [ERM..] I guess going from that kid that everyone said would never make anything out of his life and repeatedly told I’m crap at music…to a guy who has built himself up to a good standard and is now known by thousands of people, worldwide and maybe even playing in different countries next year is great and it’s still crazy to believe what’s happening and this is truly [only] the beginning! And also, being part of Kolossus and FBR and previously, Souletiquette. They help me out so much! They push my music out to the right audience (which seems to be America and France, at the moment) and they do everything to make the artists on the labels known – they truly are great people, [and] I know for a fact I would be nowhere without any of those guys. I had like 400 follows and barely any interaction before Souletiquette, Kolossus and FBR… [and] that was 5 months ago, now I’m approaching 3k and nearly 5-6k average on most tracks within a month; that’s a pretty great feeling  

 

LS: 

Now that’s something for me to take in, could hold and be inspiration to me for years of time. My respect goes to you for keeping that pushing going, the downs count towards the ups, I can tell and now evidently really see that in your story  

 

R.O.M: Which is why I live by “Nothing is impossible”. I hate to see people think they’re never going to make it because that’s what they’re told! I went through that for years and even to this day, I still get told that. But hey, I don’t care anymore. I’m going to do what I love. 

LS: So getting [in]to the last few questions. Give me 5 thing we should know about you that you feel are important to your music and related to your dedication for the craft  

 

R.O.M:  

Hmmm…

1) All of my music is based on how I felt at that point in time or something that happened to me  

2) Cookies and skittles have become apart of my creative process *laughs* 

3) I’m not much of a talker so I prefer to let music do the talking  

4) I get away from the studio sometimes and just go for a walk and explore something new for inspiration   

5) Sometimes I overthink and I end up getting into a bad mood a lot and music is the fix  

LS:

One last thing I wanted to ask you was what are your thoughts on Dreams for me, if you will?

R.O.M:

 “Dreams are whatever you want them to be. You’re in control of your life right?”

LS: 

 Thank you for your time, brother blessing me with a little more insight into you as an artist. Look forward to the future productions. All the best, soon catch up again!  

 

R.O.M:  

Thanks, man!! Proud to be a part of what you’re doing! Best wishes to you too! 

LS:

God Bless you, peace!  

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Photography: Phil Baro Thomas

Check R.O.M out on

SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/rommel-2

Twitter: @rombeats

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/romproductions96

[END OF YEAR WORDS FROM ME…THIS IS THE PART WHERE YOU SKIP, YOU AIN’T GOTTA READ IT… I’D LOVE IF YOU DID THOUGH!!!]   

Something I’ve noticed a trend in when socializing with particular friends of mine is their ambition, but not having the belief – something I can relate to. I felt like it was right to do something that gave back not just to them but to other people, because I know personally myself that there are so many people with dreams who get crushed, people with no confidence, no courage to pursue their dreams, take a stand or action… and it’s only one thing taken to spark inspiration or to help belief grow from a seed to a plant. I was one of the cowardly people, I got away and out of that – thank the Lord for that, which is why I want to help others get out of it. You never know when this can be too late.  

I love learning and I’m still rummaging for new ways TO learn, to do things. There are so many methods of learning out there, I think plus ones we don’t know – still undiscovered, waiting and yet to be found out. This year I found simplicity in the art of Conversation and learned how important, effective they can be to one than one might know until they understand the power of communication, like grasping how interesting talks can lead to ideas, spark energies such as enthusiasm or even influence your mind – feeding you inspiration, it can all be so encouraging if you let it happen. I’ve had some great talks with many people I know, people I’ve met – they’ve helped me do great things and probably don’t know it. It’s been an effective, simple way of learning, and for that reason it’s going to be one thing that I choose to carry into 2015 with me.  

 So anyway, as part of my “In Your Dreams” which has been an idea in the works (still being developed; I don’t know fully what it is or may become yet, but it’s an idea, I know that much! *laughs*), the vision I had is that I wanted to take a little thing like having conversations with people about their passions in life, what drives them – and put our words out to the world, FOR those people who maybe need something to restore their hope, confidence, belief or even build for the ones who feel they have none. It’s always been a helping matter to me, wanting to give back whichever position I’m in. I believe that Rich or Poor you there is always something you can give, it’s up to you if you will or won’t. Who knows, maybe by weeks into 2015 I’ll have other plans of action, activity to add into this whole thing, may have a few more ventures…or a lot more, we’ll have to wait and see. So let’s then, shall we?!?! This is the first post as part of my “In Your Dreams” campaign.

[I know that] It’s only New Year’s Eve, but since I wanted to get this post out fast, quickly before the year is over, very much rushing… Happy New Year! Thank you for everyone who has helped me with getting word around about this blog, sharing posts,  I’ve taken it all in & you’ve for sure helped massively. Grateful, Love.  

L.S. 

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