On today’s episode of Creative Space, we have the pleasure of chatting with John Faye, a recording artist, producer, and recently retired songwriting professor from Drexel University in Philadelphia, whose career spans over four decades. His various music projects—the Caulfields, John Faye Power Trip, IKE, John & Brittany, and his solo works― have yielded over eight hours of recorded music, song placements in film and TV, and radio airplay.
With the release of his book, The Yin and Yang of it All: Rock n Roll Stories from the Cusp As Told By a Mixed Up, Mixed Race Kid, John can also add author to his list of creative achievements.
We cover a range of topics in this conversation, including the incredible highs of being one of the only Asian American rock musicians in mainstream 90s rock. We also talk about arguing for the validity of the music middle class, which often gets overlooked in today’s fame-obsessed society.
For more on John Faye, visit: johnfaye.com.
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1:19—Meeting at Mariano + Michelle’s
4:42—John’s early life growing up in Delaware
6:41—Getting inspired by his family creatively
10:44—Being mesmerized by the B52’s
12:30—Writing song parodies as his first outlet
13:18—There was a songwriter in me before I played an instrument
17:09—It’s never too late for anything
18:26—Dealing with racism from an early age
23:29—Getting signed to A&M records at 27
29:30—Asian representation back then vs. today
31:40—”We don’t know how to market you.”
35:18—Back-handed compliments + preferring to be invisible
39:59—John’s definition of creativity
44:30—Plans to adapt the book for the stage
46:30—Where John finds inspiration
51:57—The importance of being a good observer
54:54—The inspiration for ‘The Ying and Yang of it All’
1:00:00—Doing do diligence on memoir writing
1:09:00—Arguing for the validity of the music middle class
1:14:00—Maintaining the artist life for the long haul