'Once Upon a Time The Was A Sausage Named Bob’ consists of vocalist Esty Richards, Jared Lee and his brother Lee Wei Chen, Anthony JC Lam. Come see them perform live at the Fused / WAMM film screenings on October 2nd at the Actor's Studio Lot 10. Click here for more deets. They've been nice to answer some of our questions: WAMM: Ok, before asking any other question, I think everyone's dying to know: how did you guys get such an off-beat name? What's the story behind it?Jared:
I'll try to explain in the simplest way possible: 4 boys and 1 girl met in college. Decide to join a battle of the bands for fun. Came up with a name which they thought was funny at a mamak in Subang. Won it and won a few more after that. Name stuck. Hahaha! WAMM: Right, now that we've settled that, can you each introduce yourselves and tell us a bit about yourselves? Esty:
I'm the vocalist and also the youngest in the band. My passion is to make music: live, eat and breathe it. I'm a very open minded and outgoing person. I get along with everyone pretty well. Don't let my poise fool you, once you get to know me I can be very "crack". Haha! Jared:
The Guitarist! Son of a hairstylist from Subang Jaya! :D JC:
The drummer. Been drumming for about 5 years now. Everyone close to me would know I'm into food. Seriously, bribing me with food is an option! Umm, music is my passion, writing is my job (I'm working for a local entertainment magazine). Chen:
The Bassist, into competitive gaming. Anthony:
The other guitarist, currently doing sound for a certain company and I am a metalhead. WAMM: We know Wei Chen and Jared are siblings, but as a group, how did you guys meet each other, and why did you guys decide to form a band? JC:
Actually, all 5 of us were from the same college, IACT. All of us, with the exception of Chen at the time, formed the band for a performing arts club at the college and our first song, This Is The Part
, was written then.
Coincidentally, a battle of the bands came around the same time and, in need of another member, Jared got Chen into the band to play bass. The rest, as they say, is history! WAMM: Tell us a bit about your music, who are your influences, and what's the song writing process like in your band? Esty:
Each of us has different influences which is a good thing. Basically it's either I come up with something and I give it to the band to try it out or the band comes up with a song and I fill in the lyrics. If one of us doesn’t like the song, we'll scratch it out; we want it to be a unanimous agreement. WAMM: Do you guys have other jobs besides being in a band? Why do you have more than one job? Is it due to difficulties sustaining yourself as full time performers? Chen:
The boys have jobs because being in a band locally is not enough to sustain ourselves finacially speaking.
It'll be great if we can just do music as a full time job and have enough income :) WAMM: What do you guys think is the reason for so many of our local peforming artistes to hold multiple jobs? Anthony:
I guess it's pretty obvious because the industry here doesn't allow us to pursue it full-time, I think a big factor in this is because everyone needs to live, but that still doesn't stop us from pursuing a dream.
The harsh reality of the industry is that you can't sustain yourself with just performing and recording. I would love to see a change, where local music is more accepted and the audience is more supportive (of local music). JC:
Unlike the US or other countries where their local music is thriving, the market for local music in Malaysia is actually pretty small. So based on that alone, making money from just music alone, as a band, is not easy. WAMM: Do you think that that will change soon? Anthony:
I really do hope so, if more people are receptive towards our local bands, this could change how things are. As for now, it seems rather bleak. JC:
For now, we'd better keep our daytime jobs. You know, just in case! WAMM: Do you guys have any plans of going into performing full time? What is the dream or goal for the band?Jared:
We'd love to! That'll be the aim. Actually it's every band's dream to just do music and perform full-time. The current aim now is to open for an international act and tour in the country and outside. We hope to play at festivals outside the country for a start. :) WAMM: Any last words of advice for aspiring creatives, especially those who have just started their own bands? Esty:
The most important thing is to know the value of chemistry in the band. Have fun writing songs and everything will fall into place. Always look for opportunities to perform and work hard! Boys:
WE AGREE! :DInterview by Joshua Chong