(header photo: Occasional Kid)
My name is Noah Sims, I’m a 21-year-old Producer and DJ born and raised here in Chicago. I’m studying at Columbia College to become an audio engineer and coming into my last semester this spring.
When did you first start getting into making music?
Music has always felt like a big part of my life, I’ve been whistling or humming or banging on desks for as long as I can remember. I began taking music more seriously in high school when I learned how to play drums and performed with a few bands around the age of 14 or 15. The first time I made a beat and also the first time I got behind turntables was the summer of 2012, right around my 16th birthday. That’s when I decided I wanted to pursue making music.
Two years ago you dropped your debut project Testament. Before you dropped the project, you were talking about how you had no idea what kind of damage it would do, or what kind of impact it would make. Looking back on that first project, what would you say now?
I’m very proud of the project, and thankful for the people who have taken the time to listen over the past two years. It honestly reached more people than I expected, and the opportunities that have come from it have introduced me to some of my closest friends and favorite collaborators.
You’ve been attending college these past couple of years, has that been the holdup for a new project? Can we be expecting something in 2018?
College has definitely played a big part of it; It’s hard to put in the 100% a project deserves while working a job and going to school. There have been times where I’ve wished that I came quicker with a follow-up, but I’m also very comfortable with the position I’m in. I’ve grown a lot as a person and musician in these past two years and I feel very excited about the music I’ve been making. I guarantee you’ll hear some new music of mine in 2018.
As you prepare for the release of your second album, do you ever get worried about the sophomore slump?
I wouldn’t say I‘m worried about a “sophomore slump,” but determining the nature and vision of my next project has been on my mind heavily. I really want it to evoke emotion out of the listener, to be unique and cohesive. I’m aiming to make something that goes beyond just an assortment of nice songs, and to me, the priority is the quality of the project as opposed to when it’s released.
The first line in your SoundCloud bio says, ‘It feels like when I’m making music, I’m writing and being told a story at the same time’ Break that line down for us
When I’m trying to start a song and inspiration hits, it feels like I can’t get the music out of my head fast enough. Once I get a melody recorded I start laying down as many different layers of rhythms and harmonies as I can, and later on, I find the right combinations of everything for different sections of the song. I’ve always had trouble explaining it but during that first part of the process, it feels like I’m not even making the music, more-so that I’m just a channel for these sounds to make it into the real world. The shortest way I’ve found to articulate the idea without getting too deep is in the quote you pulled from my SoundCloud bio.
How big of an impact has your mom had on your career?
My mom has had a tremendous impact on my career. She’s been supportive of my goals and aspirations from day one, and as time went on she brought that same positivity to a whole community of young artists in Chicago. She’s an incredible woman, and I consider myself lucky to be her son.
I hear you’ve been working pretty heavily with Ajani Jones. What can we expect from that?
Some very good music coming within the next few months. I and a few other producers have been working with him and the whole team has been bringing the best out of each other. Ajani’s been a close friend for a couple of years now, and I believe the hard work I’ve watched him put in is going to lead to a breakout year in 2018.