Busy is an understatement for songwriter, composer, multi-instrumentalist, producer, and founder of the band NEEDSHES, Otabek Salamov (Bek). With nine singles released since 2020 started and a regular schedule of live online performances, it comes as no surprise to find him charging headfirst in 2022, as well. Kicking things off this year is NEEDSHES’ latest single, “Song For You.” Written over the course of only a few days, the heartfelt track perfectly captures the moment when you realize that you’ve found your person.
With “Song For You” out today and NEEDSHES showing no signs of slowing down, we caught up with Bek to talk about his live-looping projects, the challenges and successes of performing online, new music and much more. Read the full interview now below.
Prelude Press: You had a busy year last year with the release of a few new singles, most recently “One Day”, as well as some online performances. What was the highlight of 2021 for you?
NEEDSHES: Yeah, that was a long one, haha. I’ve been working on lots of music, most of the songs have not been released yet. I finally have a place where I can stream, write and produce music, shoot some videos. And I finally started working on my live looping format which is taking like 60% of my time to learn how to do it. I go live twice a week which was almost impossible in my head before I started and all that happened in 2021.
Looking toward 2022, do you have any big goals for the year?
I have one main goal (haha), I just want to learn how to be a more happy person with what I have. For this year, I have lots of tasks, first and foremost, stay consistent with making and releasing my own music and produce more music with my friends.
I’m so excited about a new artist I’m working with right now. We started just a week ago, and for the first time I get a chance to work with someone I’ve been listening to for years, so yeah I am a huge fan!
You’re kicking off the new year with a bunch of awesome live-looping streams. What inspired you to start doing this?
I always wanted to clone myself (haha) since the play yard and have someone who thinks exactly like you. And for me as a producer, it is a better way to keep my mind flowing, to focus, because you have so many tasks to do at one moment. And it’s all about music, you don’t have a chance to think about what your mom said yesterday or that the planet is being destroyed, it’s like therapy.
I’ve been thinking about online shows since I finally realized that my listeners are spread all around the world and I kept making shows in Moscow and Saint Petersburg. We had a lot of questions like when we’ll be touring, and it was impossible because of the financial side and it’s still hard to imagine where I could find enough money (haha) to make it happen so I stuck on the idea of live streaming shows.
What type of work or planning goes into these live looping streams? What does the process look like for you?
My manager (who is also my wife) probably wanted me to say how much time and effort it takes to set up equipment, rehearse, and get comfortable with all the functions of these platforms when you’re completely new to it. Of course, it needs some groundwork before you can melt into the process.
Actually, I’m just playing music and chatting with people. No plans, no setlists, I just play what I’m able to play so far (haha). Sometimes I make it smooth, and sometimes I make mistakes. And it feels so natural because people can see that you’re just a human and they can do it as well. Today we’re surrounded by perfectness, it’s everywhere, all the social media make us feel that we’re not good enough, our skin is not clear enough, our bodies are not beautiful enough.
You’re also releasing your brand new single, “Song For You”! Can you tell us a little bit about the track? What inspired it?
In spring 2021 I bought the piano and started building my own studio for performing online. Strangely enough, in the process of tuning the piano, this song was born. I wrote it at once, only the bridge was created two days later. The next day I started recording it on Instagram Live. People seemed to feel a connection to it immediately. I’ve made sure it’s something special.
It’s about the moment everyone had or will have in their life when you fall in love selflessly. This can happen many times until you find your person.
What would you like for fans to take away from “Song For You”?
Just as a reminder that there’s tons of beautiful music out there, you don’t have to stick with Spotify recommendations (haha). Discovering music is a really interesting and joyful process so I try to keep my music honest. No rules, no genres, I just do what I do, and I don’t care if it’s not Rock enough, or Pop enough, or doesn’t sound fresh and modern because music is food for our minds and it should be natural and organic, but that’s just my opinion.
When can fans expect to hear some more new music?
I’ll be releasing my songs as they’re ready and I’ll try to keep it often as possible, my goal is the song every month.