How to Succeed in the Music Business – Interview with Slot Machine

Slot Machine to perform in Bangkok

While many of the artists in the region contemplate the direction of their musical careers oblivious to the economics of the music industry, some have already forged their way forward blurring distractions on the way with only one focus in mind. For the last 15 years, Slot Machine has been on the precipice of the Thai music industry. While they continue to attract the hearts of many Thai fans, it was the overflowing passion towards discovering new music and developing their signature sound which inevitably led them towards international recognition and gigs outside of Thailand.

“Our aspirations come from many elements and people in the world including The Beatles, our elderly friends and family, and history of the world. So basically, there are no shortcut in developing a music career.”

We met up with Slot Machine at the recent Viral Fest Asia celebration in SHOW DC, Bangkok and before their next concert on 26 August at Impact Arena. While we were obviously star struck, this four-member band exerted some of the most awesome energy – an amalgamate of humility and stardom driven by passion and creativity towards an ever-evolving process, which has driven them towards togetherness and confidence as a band.

Formed during their high school days, it was Foet [vocalist] and Gak [bassist] who have decided to join a nationwide singing competition. What followed was a no-looking-back, no regrets policy taken on and clearly understood from the very beginning.

“From the very beginning, we want to be an unpredictable band just like the workings of a slot machine. While it represents ‘unpredictability’ in our styles and genres that vary from one album to another, [we] are still the same machine. Conceptually, we came from the alternative rock scene and just love working with experimental and alternative music,” said Foet, the vocalist [by the way, his real name is Karinyawat Durongkirakan].

When asked about how works are being produced, it is all about the team’s effort in coming up with a backing track in the recording studio before lyrics are put into place. “We love to express our thoughts on Buddhism: the way of life, happiness, suffering, love, war, and politics,” said Gak, the bassist [his real name is Atirath Pintong].

“We have not classified the genre of our music and call it in its most pure form – music. In our world, there is no difference whether you are female or male because everything is extremely unisex and universal. We are living in the ‘now’ and we just love to live for our art and let our audience enjoy our creativity,” he added.

The Secret of Being A Band for 15 Years

While it may be inevitable that there tend to be disagreements over the last 15 years, their maturity in solving issues as a team has not only brought them closer together but a deeper understanding of each other’s quirks, strengths, and weaknesses.

“We love to talk and share ideas and have accepted the fact that there will always be disagreements. At the end of the day, all we want as a team is the same goals and benefits. We aspire to produce great works and while we may be able to do well as an individual, we can be better as a team,” said Gak.

“We are not looking into performing a 100%, as a team of four, we are aiming towards achieving a 400% success,” commented Auto [Settharat Phangchunan], the drummer.

While every artist goes through difficulties at some point in their music career, Slot Machine stressed that the challenge isn’t being the best as an individual but as a team. At this point, being great as an individual may be counter productive. “Everyone needs to be great. The difficult part is getting through it together,” said Foet. As poignant as it may sound, the band has also voiced concern over one’s intentions on being an artist. While some may be head over heels in becoming the best songwriter or musician, fame is indeed an attractive commodity and highly addictive, although quite prudently expressed by famous singer Enya – “Fame and success are very different things.”

“Some may not know what they really want other than fame. There’s great possibility that you may achieve fame in the short term but true as it may sound, it wouldn’t last long especially in the music industry. Creating a style of your own is an evolving process and it takes time,” said Gak.

Worthwhile Quotes from Slot Machine

“Everything has changed but changes never change.”

“Our advice is to go back to the basics and study the history of humanity because of the extensive things people have done to the world. Our aspirations come from many elements and people in the world including The Beatles, our elderly friends and family, and history of the world. So basically, there is no shortcut in developing a music career.”

“Do not ask about the benefits you will receive from the music industry, instead think about what you can give back.”

“In order for you to sustain a career as an artist, you must first be sincere to your music.”

Don’t miss Slot Machine’s largest-ever concert – Chang Music Connection presents Slot Machine – The Mothership Live at Impact Arena this Saturday 26 August 2017. Tickets are priced at THB800 and will be available at all ThaiTicketMajor outlets. For further updates of the concert, please visit www.bectero.com. Their latest single Spin The World has released on YouTube just over a month ago.

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