MuzicNotez: First off, it’s an honor to be doing this interview with you Xander, thanks for taking the time to sit down with us.
What motivated you to start creating music? What age did you begin?
Xander Demos: Thanks so much for having me. It’s completely my pleasure.
Wow… let me think back that far. Haha. I started playing drums when I was younger, and then, after watching some of the incredible guitar gods on MTV back in the 80’s, I switched to the guitar. I must’ve been about 15 or so. A little late for a guitar player to start,but I learned pretty quickly. Creating my own music was just something that evolved from playing in various cover bands. We would play the hits of the day, but we’d want to mix in some original stuff. That’s how it all began.
MuzicNotez: Who were your musical influences, idols, or bands growing up that have helped mold you into the musician you are today? Or helped mold the music that you create?
Xander Demos: Well, again, those bands from the 70s and 80s like Boston and Journey… those are two incredible influences on my music. I also loved bands like Whitesnake, Warrant, White Lion, etc. I was in a Racer X tribute band for a while, so I guess you would say them, too. Dream Theater is a big influence on my music today, as well as Judas Priest, Maiden and Ozzy. All the guitarists like Yngwie Malmsteen, Adrian Vandenberg, John Sykes, Neal Schon, Tom Scholz, etc. etc. Loved all those guys and still do. They have all bled into my music at some point, I’m sure.
MuzicNotez: What’s the greatest concert you’ve ever been to or performed?
Xander Demos: Greatest concert we’ve performed would probably have to be opening for Buckethead in Pittsburgh. The crowd was perfect for my guitar-based music, so they dug the instrumental stuff. They were really an enthusiastic crowd, and we sold a ton of cds and merch that night. Haha.
MuzicNotez: What’s the ultimate goal you want your music to achieve, or for you to achieve in your career as a musician? Any particular message you wish to send?
I think the message would be to just believe in yourself, stick with what you love, and don’t follow the trends. Bands that are original and have their own sound last the longest. Trendy bands come and go. Look at all the bands that followed the hair trend. They came out in the early 90s when that movement was on the way out.They didn’t last. The ones that lasted and are still playing concerts today are the originators of that sound. Same thing with grunge or any of those “sounds.” Only the originals survive, so be original. I think the ultimate goal would be to make music that moves people and that evokes emotion from the listener… and to sell a few million copies would be nice. Haha.
MuzicNotez: You’re known for shredding a guitar, so what’s your weapon of choice?
Xander Demos: Well, I play Suhr and McNaught guitars right now. I have something special happening with Conklin, too. But, I’d have to say, my signature model, the XD727 McNaught is my baby. I was just so blown away and honored to have my own guitar, after my own specs. David Thomas McNaught makes some serious guitars, and some of the best use ’em. So, to play your own model is pretty freakin’ amazing. VIEW THE REST OF THE INTERVIEW HERE >>