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Melting Pot Interviews - Schwem talks about musical influences, family upbringings, and Ninjas

Updated: Dec 28, 2022


 


Z:

Where's home?


Schwem:

Home is where the heart is.


I live in a small town in KS right outside of Topeka. Raised in Kansas City Missouri as well as Kansas City Kansas & Topeka & Surrounding rural communities. Because that’s where my family lives. To me though, I can make anything feel like home. Touring feels like home even if I’m in a new hotel everyday it doesn’t matter the physical placement; because I follow my heart and my heart is inside the music.


Z:

Nomadic lifestyle, nice!~


You've released a lot of different styles of music. If you had pick a genre to best to describe your music which would it be?


Schwem:

We’re at a point in the world where genre is irrelevant. I make music for the soul and for people who need music to live. Especially lost kids.


Z:

Very well, I can respect that answer~


You've done a lot of shows out of state this last year! Any particular cities that stood out more than others?


Schwem:

Wichita, Denver and Mobile Alabama.


-Wichita shows relentless support for the PAK

-Denver is simply beautiful and we tapped into a college crowd there it was good

-Mobile Alabama has an extremely alive scene of surfers skaters and rappers who all associate with each other even though I noticed they like to start lil petty beefs with each other for small reasons (the artists)


I get mad support out there and I love the people and vibe so much.


Z:

Yeah definitely agree with you there, Mobile is always a good time!~


Touring takes a lot of moving parts to make happen. With all these moving parts sometimes there's things we can't prep for. Now that you've toured around a few times, is there anyway/anything you prep differently than you did the first time you toured out of state?


Schwem:

I’ve been on like 7 tours now bout to do the 8th(already completed by the time this article releases)


Prep for the unexpected and just roll with the punches.


Not too much has changed besides the amount of money being spent

Like when I started I would just go and sleep in my car or at friends houses, now I get hotels n stuff.


I keep diet and exercise routine on the road it makes a world of difference, didn’t do that before, I thought I had to starve hahaha. Eating nutrition-less ramen noodles n shit. Nah son it’s salad and protein bar gang!


Z:

Well we're glad to hear you're taking care of yourself on the road, 20 shows back to back can be very taxing! You gotta fuel up on the good stuff.


SchwemSpeaks is a blog you do on YouTube where you do deep dives into music and general music industry info. It just started its second season not too long ago yes? Tell me about how it started and where you plan on taking it in season 2.

Schwem:

Oh my gosh thank you for asking!


I’m very excited about the SchwemSpeaks season two! In the third episode I made a huge breakthrough and you literally are able to watch it click in my head. The changes I need to make. And now you’ll be able to witness those changes and the effect they have on my ability to perform in a narrative context.


It’s a huge help for me and those who watch always tell me to keep ‘em coming.

When it comes to production value of the show I’ve upgraded things like the camera, I’m editing the videos now to cut on dead space and I’m writing rough outlines of the topics I want to cover as well as adding segments such as speaking about current events.

Also being more consistent with the drops.

Z:

I'm excited to see what season 2 has in store, I'll definitely be watching!


You have a hairstyle that's very on point with your PAK brand. It's very early UK punk era. What's your earliest memory of Punk music being a part of your life?

Schwem:

So my parents were goth punks themselves. Did mad drugs, gave no fucks, ran amuck getting into hella trouble constantly. They had me while my mom had JUST turned 17 a few short weeks before and my dad was 19 I believe. With this being said, they changed their lifestyle quite a bit when I came into the picture but the things like music and what not they kept around.


So I was raised on things like Korn, Nirvana, Disturbed, Jekyl, Saliva, Etc etc from my dads side. From my moms side (they were never in a relationship during my lifetime) I was shown Eminem, blink 182, offspring, Sex Pistols, clash, the ramones, type o negative, slipknot, etc etc

Sex Pistols & blink 182 specifically changed me on the inside I just felt the songs so hard, oh and CANT FORGET MISFITS! Ozzy, rob zombie the list goes on...


Eventually I was shown tech n9ne and Hollywood undead by my uncle and that’s where things really took a shift. Kid Cudi, Kanye west, Three days grace; then on my own I got into other stuff like coal chamber, Pink Floyd & too many others to count. All of these artists share a punk attitude and that attitude is everything to me.


Z:

Wow that sounds like a very unique upbringing! I couldn't imagine there wasn't some trials n tribulation involved with having young new parents, even if they weren't able to stay together for the kids. Are you still in touch with both of them? Have they heard your music? Do they like what you're creating?


Schwem:

Haha nice reference culture.


Z:

Proud of myself for that one.


Schwem:

My dad is dead, sadly. He drank himself to death. My mom and I have had on and off good/bad relationships, but now we’re closer than ever and I love it so much.

My dad and I were able to get very close near the end of his life and I will forever carry on his name and passion for music in every action of my life. Same with my mom but she’s still around to do it herself too haha. My dad was such a fan! Me and him had on and off relationship too, but once he saw how hard I was going in music and started coming to the shows he became my biggest supporter. Dude would start a mosh at every show and blow vape clouds at the stage when we didn’t have fog machines hahaha. I was actually able to record some music with him in his last years. So thankful for getting over myself and rekindling that relationship. My mom supports but doesn’t show too much interest. Doesn’t really listen to my songs in her free time or anything like my dad did but she lets me know she believes in me. Been to a few shows. She’s pretty busy raising my two siblings who are 4 & 2.


Z:

My condolences for your father's passing. He sounded like a true Punk Ass Kid at heart! I'm happy to hear he was able to see you in some of the crucial beginnings of your musical journey. Family can be more important than we realize sometimes.


Schwem:

Yes sir! Thank you.

I told him the day before he died that I’m so sorry I wasn’t able to become rich and famous and spoil him the way I planned. He told me “you’ve already made it” and I didn’t understand. I was like nah no way bro, but what he meant was I’m already there. I make music and live a rockstar life everyday whether I’m famous or not. Changed my life even though it took a second to hit me.


I must also mention my step dad, Dave. Who also died from his own actions, lung Cancer from then marlboro reds & 12 packs of coke he consumed so many of.

He hated rap music and that was my main thing at the time, but he let me know how he believed in me and told me never to quit because I’m really onto something. It stood out because he could appreciate the talent without loving the art.


Z:

I appreciate you sharing that my dude. I'm finding the situations almost uncanny to my own upbringings. Definitely have new found respects for you. Wanna knock out these last questions? Need a moment?


Schwem:

Nope let’s run it! Had to buss out some push-ups though hahaha


Z:

Fill in the blank:

It's Friday night and I'm ______


Schwem:

Paid. Grinding. Investing Time.


Z:

Pirates or Ninjas?


Schwem:

Ninjas


Pirates be r****** and stealing for a living I’m cool on that.


Z:

Aux chord has been handed to you at the family function. Grandma wants to hear your music. What song do you play?


Schwem:

Butterflies...or this song called September that’s unreleased.





 
You can find Schwem's music below:

https://open.spotify.com/artist/4AZzpAWYGasaM40ecqZWqN?si=dN6soCN8R6GMW9JX9OTXQw

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