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Interview with Surface of The Sun
What got you into music, and if you had not gotten into music what would you be doing today?
My older sister and her friends are who really got me into music. I was in grade 8, and I soaked up everything they showed me. It was a very influential time, and after I heard Korn for the first time everything changed. Korn set me on the musical journey that got me to where I am today.
If I wasn’t into music, I think I’d be acting, which I’m actually already doing, so I guess I’d just have started it sooner. Haha. Actually, before music, I wanted to act. Then after I started playing guitar I focused on music but never lost interest in acting. Finally, after years and years of thinking about it, I finally started about three years ago. To date, I’ve been in a series, several short films, and a main role in a feature-length indie movie.
What do you like to do when you are not playing music and how does that influence your creativity?
When not making music mostly I act and write. I’m currently working on the third novel in my book series, Sky View. My book writing has influenced my music before. I recently released an album under my own name, Devon Eggers, based on the first book in the series. It’s much different than Surface of the Sun (SOTS), but was a very fun experience. Mostly though, I think acting and writing are a similar outlet as music and less of an influencer.
I do like to spend time outdoors, hiking, biking, and walking. I find nature peaceful, and it gives me time to reflect. This time has helped give me perspective on many things over the years, and that has influenced my lyrics. Whether I’m working through an issue, or thinking about something in society, many times those thoughts have made their way into my lyrics.
I also play a lot of Magic: The Gathering. Though I’m not sure that’s influenced the music. Not yet, anyway. Haha.
How long has your band been around?
The idea for SOTS happened around 2007, and I started recording the first full-length album, A Dying Star, in 2009. It was released in 2011.
Where are you based out of and how did that influence your music?
I am based out of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. And although most of my exposure and experience to music has occurred during my time here, including working here as a professional recording and mixing engineer, I can’t really say that the city or the music scene here strongly influenced my music. Some of the people here did, like friends and family, and also my personal experiences, but those could have occurred anywhere, so I don’t really contribute Vancouver to having a part in it.
How did you come up with the name of your band and what does it mean to you?
Over the years I’ve had a habit of getting names for things from my movie collection. I named two dogs after characters in Pulp Fiction, and almost all working titles for my songs are movie titles. This habit started when I lived in a very small basement suite in my early twenties. Everything was crammed together, resulting in my DVD collection being next to my guitars and computer. One day I needed a new working song title, happened to look at my DVDs while thinking about it, and named a song The Matrix. So, years later when it came time to name my music project, I took the same approach.
I knew I didn’t want a simple one-word name, or a name that was “The ____” (fill in the blank). I also wanted it to in some way reference something scientific, or at least something one might discuss somewhere in the realm of science. So, after weeks of thinking, I eventually landed on Surface of the Sun, which came from one of my favourite science fiction movies, Sunshine. It met my aforementioned requirements and also seemed cool because the sun technically doesn’t have a surface.
Tell me about your most memorable shows.
Since SOTS is a complex solo project, live shows have not been part of the gig. I was, however, in the middle of practicing for live performances in the weeks leading up to COVID, and then all of that got dropped as result, of course. It’s been three years now since that started, and I’m not sure if and when it’ll start back up. I’d like it to. I think I’d enjoy putting SOTS on the stage.
What is some advice that you would give to someone who is just getting into playing in a band and some advice that you would give to your younger self?
A couple pieces of advice I’d give someone are:
Treat your band like a business. It is a business. Learn how to create one, manage your accounting and expenses properly, deal with agreements / contracts between members, etc. If it goes anywhere you’ll need to do this, and it’s just smarter and easier to start right away. If that band doesn’t work out, you’ll be ready for the next one.
The music industry is brutal, and “making it” is more like winning a lottery than achieving it by working hard or being amazing at it. In reality, you need all three. You need to be good enough, bust your ass, and then you need to win the lottery by being at the right place at the right time, and/or knowing the right person at the right time. Skill alone is not enough to make it in entertainment. This is why my advice is to first and foremost make sure you’re doing this because you love it. Yes, there’s a chance you could take off. But statistically speaking, that chance is incredibly small. But, if you love doing it no matter what, then “making it” shouldn’t be the goal. “Making it” is a bonus if it happens. The goal should be to enjoy your life and what you’re doing with your time.
Some advice I’d give to my younger self is to trust that I can make it through whatever comes my way, good or bad, and to not lose sight of my morals and values during those times. Be true to and have faith in myself, always.
If you could go back in time and give yourselves advice, what would it be?
Buy Bitcoin and Tesla shares and sell them after the pandemic starts. Lol
Of your songs which one means the most to you and why?
Oblivion means the most to me because of what it’s about, and what it achieved.
In a nutshell, Oblivion is about overcoming self-doubt. It’s about beating that little voice in your head that says you’re not good enough, or that you can’t do it. It’s about building confidence and creating a more positive view of one’s self. I think this is something we can all relate to at one time or another, and something that many really struggle with. It’s a part of my past, too, and probably my future as well.
Oblivion also means a lot to me because it made it to the Canadian Radio Rock TOP 40, peaking at 26 in 2019, and gained me an artist spotlight in a Billboard report. It’s something I’m very proud of.
What is the creative process for the band, and what inspires you to write your music?
My creative process is very improvisational in nature. Mostly I live in the moment and let whatever happens, happen. Music is emotion, so I let my emotions guide the process. For me, I’ve always found this to work much better than starting by telling myself I’m going to write a specific thing in a specific way. So, because of this process, whatever is going on at that time is what inspires me, whether it’s about me, someone, or something else.
What kinds of messages do you like to get across in your music?
Much of my music touches on something challenging, or something one could call a negative thing. This could be a personal issue or a challenging societal matter. I look for something that has meaning to me, but also something others can relate to. But in the end, I usually have something positive to add, focusing on the fact that despite challenges and issues we can grow and become something more. So, many things tend to have a twist of positivity in some way hiding amongst the lyrics.
What are your plans for the future, and do you have anything that you want to spotlight that is coming up?
2023 is looking to be an awesome year. I’ve got my third novel in the works, there are many acting possibilities, and I’ve recently started reviewing all my ideas from years past to start working on the next SOTS release. There’s a long way to go yet, but I’d love to release another EP next year.
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