Brad LeRiche is a singer-songwriter and a native son of Port aux Basques currently gaining attention and acclaim on the indie alternative music scene.
The self-described shy and odd kid has been strumming a guitar since he was a year old and eventually went to study the music industry, performance and recording arts in college.
Recently the Toronto Star branded him “Your New Favorite Thing” and two singles from his X-Dreamer album – “River Runs” and “Under Cover” – are steadily building him a fan base that extends even south of the border.
The Gulf News recently caught up with the artist, who goes by the name “LeRiche.”
Did you catch the article in The Toronto Star? What did you think of it, and being mentioned in comparison with James Blunt and Ed Sheeran?
I thought it was well written and I was very surprised and flattered to be honest. I never thought I'd be mentioned in the same sentence as tremendous talents like Ed Sheeran and James Blunt in such a way. The music has been so well received lately and I couldn't be more grateful for that. Big thanks go to writer Ben Rayner for his encouraging words. But I still prefer the Gulf News!
Do you get back to Port Aux Basques much to visit? Other than family and friends, what do you miss most about this area?
Not as much as I'd like to. I haven't been home to visit family and friends since early summer. I'm aiming to be home ASAP in the New Year. The scenery and my old stomping grounds are dearly missed. I've written countless songs with memories of my hometown running through my mind.
Will you be performing in our area anytime soon?
I would love to. It's been way too long! I imagine not so soon but in the inevitable future. If I had to guess I would say in the spring.
What advice would you give other aspiring musicians?
Keep listening. Keep learning. Never stop trying to get better. Meet and support as many musicians as possible. And always be nice to the sound-person.
What is your favourite song you’ve written and why?
It always changes but right now for me it's “Roam.” I wrote that song the first time I left Newfoundland to travel to Toronto in pursuit of the music. It was crazy to me to have been blessed with the opportunities and the drive, and over the years that somehow brought me to Toronto and to making my first record. I thought about my parents and how they must have felt watching me run off to chase a dream. I thought about how hard it must've been to let me go like that. So flash forward a couple years now my beautiful daughter Skylar is over a year old, and the song has come full circle on me, and a song that was once emotional to me, is now 10 times harder to get through without choking up.
Who are some of your songwriting influences?
They range from Newfoundland’s own Hey Rosetta, to metal acts like Protest the Hero, from rap gods like Eminem and Kendrick Lamar, to rock legends like the Foo Fighters. The common thread between each of these unique artists/bands is that each have a real style in their writing and each have a powerful way of telling a story in song. And I think Newfoundland itself and its strong traditions of song and story have been with me from the start. These songs, passed on through family and community continue to influence my creative process. From off the rock, I've always been interested in all walks of music, from rap to country, metal to pop, classical to jazz. You name it. I love it all.
What’s next for you?
Onwards and upwards, always! In the New Year I'll be gearing up for a couple shows in Newfoundland. I will be largely promoting the new X-Dreamer EP in between writing and recording the next batch of music. I intend to travel abroad to try and get my music heard. I plan to return to Brighton for The Great Escape Festival and hopefully to some new places, France and Germany. Although I couldn't make it last year I was invited to be part of Australian Music week and hope that works out next fall.
With the internet, the music industry, like most others, has really become a global village. A couple of my songs have been getting some U.S. airtime, so I plan to travel to the eastern states to promote the EP as well. Always lots on the go.
And, of course, I can't wait to come home.
For more information: www.LeRicheMusic.com