How a Trip to Japan Inspired Neo-Jazz Artist, Shadrach Reid’s Latest Release
Daniel “Shadrach Reid” is an NYC-based jazz guitarist who is hoping to document his trip to Japan through his upcoming album. We reached out to Shadrach Reid and asked him about his experiences in Japan, his latest release “Time and Separation” and his plans for the future.
What was your first encounter with Japanese culture and what drew you to travel to Japan?
As a kid I watched stuff like Pokemon and Yugioh, but didn’t realize they were Japanese until much later due to the “American-zation” of those properties at the time. The first time I really experienced Japanese culture for what it is was when my friends and 10th grade history teacher told me to watch this anime called “Samurai Champloo”. After watching the first episode of it, I was so amazed by the narrative being told and the culture it was portraying. I was hooked.
After a year or so of getting into anime, I just came up with the dream of doing music in Japan. The various soundtracks and OP/EDs of the anime I watched were so fresh and inspiring, and developing this dream was a combination of me being inspired to learn Japanese and the dream I always had of doing music professionally.
What was it like living in Japan? Where did you travel and what did you enjoy most about it?
Lol considering the past year or so I think for the time being I legit peaked in Japan (in terms of happiness haha). Almost everyday was a new learning experience and was a time in my life that did have its problems, but I learned a lot about myself and looking back now, while there are MANY things I would’ve done differently, I am happy I got to live and integrate myself in the culture. The summer of 2018 I traveled from where I was studying in Fukuoka, all the way up to Tokyo. Along the way I stopped at Kyoto, Nara, Kobe and Osaka!
Your new release, “Time and Separation” reminds me of the music of the band Covet. What sonic and creative inspirations did you have for the song?
Omg, I am humbled you would say that. This song was written at a very vulnerable time of my life, the first time I had a falling out with a group of people I really cared about. This song is the purest way of me expressing my grief of that situation. The composition itself started out with just guitar, but in a spur of the moment sort of the thing (actually it was a group project for an audio engineering class) I had friends add drums, keys and bass to what I wrote. I legitimately don’t remember who exactly did what, and I feel kind guilt because I want to credit them, but I’ll do my best to find out who exactly did what!
I was heavily inspired by Jake McGuire, an incredible percussive acoustic guitarist. His album, “Moving Mountains” has an amazing spacious vibe to it, and while I dont think I achieved such a vibe with this song, the sentiment of him inspiring me playing acoustic is still there!
What are your upcoming plans as a musician?
Over this summer I plan on releasing a collection of summer-themed singles. These songs have been on the backburner for so long and now is the time to release them for the lost time I’ve accumulated. I am trying to compensate for all the years I was too afraid of my own lack of skill and didn’t really push myself musically, but with this series of releases I will engineer them myself, which is vulnerable for me but I know this whole process will make me improve greatly
Now that the pandemic is ending, what are you most excited about?
Seeing live shows and getting back into working in the music industry!
As a native New Yorker, what has been your favourite boba spot?
To be honest, I have no favorite spots because I don’t drink boba that often, so all I can respond with is that Taro Boba is the best, and I’ll fight anyone who disagrees.
Listen to “Time and Seperation” by Shadrach Reid here: