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Dan Schonski

Read the Dan Schonski Interview below and share it on social media.

Please tell our readers who you are and what you do?

Well, hello! ? my name is Dan Schonski, and I am one of the many musicians in Canada trying to find someone to bleed my heart into… I’ve been playing guitar, singing, and writing all of my own music since I was 12 years old, and at the ripe old age of 19, I am STILL taking music very seriously. You have most likely (if not definitely) never heard of me, but I’m hoping that one day, that could change in the near future.

I live in the small community of Waterdown, just outside of Hamilton and Burlington in Ontario… I’ve played just about every place I could think of around here, and I’m trying every day to expand to broader horizons. I’ve just enrolled myself (with the help of my amazing mother) into Metalworks in Mississauga in the Audio Production Engineering program, and I am in a VERY happy place in my life! I have always wanted to not only produce my own music professionally, but help give others a voice in the vast sea of sounds that we struggle to rise above in this day and age. Even though I may not have a ton of time to write now, I am still making the most of my situation, and striving for greatness. ? I am actually working on a new album at the moment with a dear friend I met in the course I’m in! He is a fantastically imaginative producer, and I am blessed to have met a man like him at the time of need that I was faced with. Take note of “Andrew Falk”, He is going to make history some day!

Anyways, (don’t worry I’m almost done jabbering on), if you’re interested in hearing music that came from the deepest recesses of my heart, then by all means, have a listen, and tell me your brutal, honest opinion… <3 there is only growth to be benefited from it for me, trust.

This is “Ascension” an album I produced and wrote in highschool at the local Youth Center with the amazing Marcel Knot of YFC Waterdown… it took us three whole years to create this piece of heartbreak and turmoil in sound, but it was an amazing journey, and these songs are a very close, very intimate look into my heart.

I’m thankful of your time, and thankful of your passion for the arts. Music is so lovely isn’t it? It embodies everything in the universe, and is the key to a happy existence!

This is my latest, and current work for the new project which I’ve decided to call “Rain Shaker”. I’ve always thought of rainshakers as summoners of the rain, and honestly, every single time I play outdoors it rains for some reason.. so I thought along with the moody music, it was a close fit eh? Anyways, here is “Hypnotic Gaze”!

Thank you for listening, and have a wonderful day! If you are interested in working together, I’m very, VERY interested in writing for other’s ideas and emotions… I feel that alone, I could never create what we could together my friends… I’m just interested in invention <3

How would you describe your influences and how have they changed over the years?

Funny enough, I was actually heavily influenced by bands like Iron Maiden, Rage Against the Machine, Avenged Sevenfold and Disturbed growing up as a kid in middle school, which I guess shows in my look, but you’d be surprised to know that even though I still LOVE those groups, and metal, I actually write, and listen to Folk, Rock and Hip Hop primarily now (50 Cent, Busta Ryhmes, James Taylor, City and Colour).. even some Jazz and R&B (such as Marvin Gaye, The Weeknd, Miles Davis, Frank Sinatra, Billie Holiday). My biggest and most influential artist being Dallas Green of City and Colour, and in earlier days Alexisonfire. Oh and Neil Young, it all started with him actually, I know A LOT of Neil Young’s tunes on the guitar. My current headspace as far as music goes, is that I let it come to me… you know when somebody offers to show you some of their work, or when someone sends you something of facebook claiming it’s the best thing since sliced bread? THAT’S the kind of music I’ve grown to love and enjoy… new born sounds and ideas that I haven’t experienced yet. It’s so exciting opening your mind up! Wouldn’t you agree?

What´s new right now?

The release of “Rain Shaker” is the most important thing on my mind right now. I have so many things to say, and so many things to learn from others, and I feel like this new album is going to be the key to my spiritual release. I just want someone to relate to in the end… and if music is the way that I can accomplish that, then I’m going to spend every waking second with a pen in my hand until I can achieve my dreams, and find my way around the world, living off of, and loving music.

I don’t have anything lined up right now as far as shows of events go, but by all means, if you’re willing to have me come to your town, or joint, I would love to meet you, and experience you for the day/ night. ? I love performing anywhere and everywhere man! It’s like a drug to me. Please contact me at if you’re interested!

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Are you a superfan of anyone? How did you become a superfan? Do you remember how you become a fan and what turned you into super fan? Have you ever thought about why you´re such a fan?

Oh I am definitely a City and Colour superfan. Dallas Green’s hypnotic vocal work in Alexisonfire was actually my transition between hardcore to folk music. I have almost every single song he’s written so far, even his covers!

Funny story actually, I was on a plane with my mum and sister going over to England, and on the TV thingy in front of me, there was a suggested Canadian artists section under music, and it was then that I saw his album cover for “Little Hell”. It was so pretty that I clicked on it immediately… and I was VERY happy to find out that Dallas was the singer in this group too! Little Hell was the beginning of my obsession towards his mind, and I’ve been rampantly following him ever since. Tracks like O’ Sister and Silver and Gold have been very emotionally supportive towards me as I’ve faced the challenges of growing up… and honestly, anything that comes out of his mouth is gold.. and silver c; haha.

Bring Me Your Love is my favourite album of all time though by him. Every single track on that album makes me feel utter ecstacy when I hear them. I fall asleep every night to his voice, and it guides me into my dreams, and sometimes if I’m lucky, becomes their soundtrack ?

A lot of people rag on him for his newest album “If I should go before you” because he changed his sound, but I ABSOLUTELY LOVE this for him musically. It’s kinda like when Bob Dylan went electric you know? Although I guess you could argue that Dallas has always have electric sounds in his music… but I digress. Moral of the story, THIS album is amazing, I love EVERY song on it too, and I am going to continue following him wherever his heart takes him! ? This work of outstanding bluesy rockin’, folky talkin’ music ranks amongst my favourites in his collection!


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What was the biggest mistake you made when you started making music and what would be the number one tip you could give to a newcomer musician?

Recording without a metronome is the first thing that comes to mind haha.. in grade 9 when I worked on a small EP called “Opaque” I was all over the place as far as the music was concerned. The songs were also like, 9 minutes long haha! But you know what? Everyone makes a small mistake in the beginning..

It’s the mistakes that define us as human. Never forget that.


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How do you get gigs? Can you share any tips?

I usually just stroll in with my guitar, and ask if they throw anything, and if so, when? It usually happens for me when I actually connect with them in person too. It also doesn’t hurt to ask on social media if anyone knows of any places! Just put yourself out there, and be prepared to give your best performance! Or if you have any material, send it their way! It’s all about intimacy and connection, it is key. Look high and low, and never turn down a show, no matter how big or small, it’s all positive to your growth as an artist.


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Do you have good promotion tips for other musicians?

Well I’m signed up to many Facebook groups and writing groups. I just put my newest work out there, and hope that somebody actually likes it haha. Other than that, I just try and play in public areas with a few CDs handy. I’ve never spent money on promotion thus far, and I have a small fan based, so it just goes to show, you can figure these things out alone, you don’t need to be rich to become rich… well, I’m not rich but hey, you know what I mean!


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Do you have insights on how to grow your audience on soundcloud that you want to share with our audience?

Just find people you enjoy, and try and start a relationship with them! ? <3 don’t be afraid of people who you think are bigger than yourself. We are all tiny fish in this giant pond of life… there is no point in missing an opportunity to connect with someone. Have an open mind, and connect, connect, connect. <3 Oh, and try your best to be yourself! Don’t become what you think the rest of us will enjoy! Become your true self, and everyone will realize your voice as an artist. Different is a good thing! <3


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What has been your biggest challenge right now? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?

Well currently, my biggest challenge would be the fear of being thrown into the real world after my course at Metalworks is finished. I’m afraid of being potentially lost as far as a job, or career goes, but I’m hoping to release my new album and see where my life ends up. I figure, what ever’s in God’s plan, is going to be what I get, and that’s that. If the fates have success in store for me, then I welcome it with open arms… but until then, I’m going to give myself away every single day and night until I find someone to relate to musically. <3


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How do you personally discover new music?

I sit on Soundcloud on their cool repost exchange thing, listen to every single tune on there daily. I also constantly try and find artists with an interesting sound to send me their newest creations! ? especially my buddy Brian Wes. He’s got this very cool “Beck” sounding thing going on, but with a fusion of moody electric guitar, and mellow overtones in his sound very cool. It also doesn’t hurt that I’m surrounded by musicians and producers daily at Metalworks, so I’m constantly in the loop of their ideals and accomplishments! ? <3 I will however also subscribe to artists I love on Youtube whenever they release new music. I also constantly listen to the radio in the car with my mum on the drive over to school every morning. Even though it’s her bubblegum pop music, I still appreciate the enlightenment on what’s happening in the mainstream. That or I’ll just go to an old music store and grab a handful of random CDS and go home and listen to them ? vinyls preferred however! Haha… c;


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Once you discovered new music, do you tell others about the new music/artist you discovered? If yes, how exactly?

“Oh yes! That’s the best part, I love showing others my musical discoveries! I’ll put it all over my Facebook page, or tell them by word of mouth! One of the coolest artists I’ve just recently discovered for example is a group of dudes called GOOD WTHR. I liked them so much that I actually asked to write a hook on one of their tracks! AND LUCKY ME, THEY JIVED WITH IT! I’m sending them my progress so far today actually, and it’s looking pretty good! VERY excited! ?


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What is your number one tip to improve your music production or songwriting skills?

Just know what your vision is before you step in front of the microphone. If you know what you are trying to convey to someone’s heart, then you’ll be just fine. Just sing with all of your heart and soul, and never shy from your emotions and ideas. Also, know that nothing is out of reach to you. If you hear a sound that is intimidating, or seems bigger than yourself, see it as a challenge, and chase that forever until you get your hands around it. You can do anything you set your mind to, and I mean it. ?


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What is your best tip for those who struggle with finishing their tracks?

Maybe if you’re preparing to finish a track, it wouldn’t hurt to get other ears that you trust involved. The more the merrier. Everybody has their own tastes in sound, so just make sure that you are strong of will before going down that route, if someone is going to completely tear your work apart, just take it as constructive criticism. ? you are unique and amazing, sometime people just won’t understand what your aiming for. As long as you speak from the heart, you can’t go wrong! Also, as far a production goes, your should always ask for opinion on your mix, and maybe find someone else to master your work. Someone who’s been in it for a long while, and finds that kind of work to be THEIR passion. You create, and they reinforce.


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We meet again in one year. What has changed?

Well hopefully I’ll be touring with a band and living off of our work haha.. but that’s the bigger picture. As for now, or a year from now… hopefully I’ll just be happy in my life, and engaged to my beautiful girlfriend… as long as I’m happy, then everything is alright. ? Piece of mind is what it’s all about, we’re only here for a short while.. as long as we inspire, we’ve done our jobs. \m/


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