Stepping in front of the microphone and out of his comfort zone, Southern California bassist, Noah Nicodemas is showing us the power of creative vulnerability by releasing his very first “semi-solo” project: C-Side, a three-song EP that’s been in the works since 2020.
And that’s only just the beginning.
With the single “Guns of Brixton” already out on all music platforms and two more ready to drop, we sat down with Noah to discuss what went into this project and what more is to come!
How long have you been working on the EP, from start to finish?
- Noah: All in all, the recording process took a little over a year but I’ve been wanting to have some sort of acoustic-style EP for a while now so it feels really good to have it finished.
Where did the idea come from?
- I never considered myself to be much of a singer or songwriter but I like to strum on an acoustic and during the pandemic, my bands weren’t performing. I had a lot more time to jam by myself. I ended up writing some halfway-decent songs.
Why did you make this album?
- Originally, I wanted to record these songs just for me; mainly to feel accomplished and creatively fulfilled. I’ve made a lot of music in a collaborative setting like with my bands and stuff but nothing I can truly call mine. Honestly, I had no intentions of actually releasing it except maybe for close friends and some family. I’m kind of shy and introverted but when the songs were all finished, I was so proud! I feel compelled to share them– even if it’s just for a small group of people.
How much help did you get with everything?
- Tons. Hayden Hanson from Tunnel Vision was incredible. He recorded, mixed, mastered and produced all of the songs at his Tube Town Studios in San Clemente. I remember trying to sing harmonies, and I’m not a great singer by any means, this dude literally coached me line by line, haha. Wolfy Keeney jumped on the drums and other percussion and my best friend, Greg Galarze, laid down some electric guitar leads. Troy Warkocki of Pier Rat Records got it out there. Even my fiancé Kristin helped out, she made the album art. I’m so grateful for everyone.
Is this your first solo project?
- Numero uno. I still consider it “semi-solo”. I really couldn’t have done this without all the help from Wolfy, Greg, Troy and Hayden.
What comes first, the music or the lyrics?
- With these songs, the music came first. I have lots of voice memos and notes with lyrics on my phone. Most are probably shit but sometimes I’ll go back and listen and try to fit things together.
What was the most challenging part of working on a solo project?
- For me, it was having to do the singing. I almost had Wolfy sing because he is so good with harmonies. There were moments when I had some imposters syndrome. I felt self-conscience about my voice and felt like I didn’t know what I was doing but at the end of the day, I wanted to have my voice with my lyrics so I ultimately took the leap out of my comfort zone and I had so much fun doing it.
What was the biggest lesson you learned in creating this EP?
- If you have the urge to create and if you feel inspired, you have to go for it. Don’t wait for the right time. Today is history. And don’t be afraid to ask for help.
What makes each song unique?
- “Guns of Brixton” is actually a cover song by The Clash. It was written by their bassist, Paul Simonon. I’m a bassist at my core so I felt it fitting to cover that one, but in my own style. “Be Somebody” which I’m releasing this Friday, May 5th, is very personal. I put my heart and soul into that one, again not intending to share it, but in a more therapeutic sense. I used an actual voicemail from my Dad in the intro which is kind of special. “Today’s History” is the final song on the EP. That one will be out closer to the beginning of June. I wrote it during the height of COVID and if you listen to it with some good headphones, there’s a spot in the middle of the song where we pan the vocal and dub it out. Oh man, it gets me every time I hear it. I always turn that part up.
You used actual sound bites from the civil unrest we saw in 2020, did you personally record it? Did you record it specifically for the song?
- No, I didn’t personally record it. We actually sampled a few clips on YouTube of news coverage and some people’s iPhone footage. I remember that time pretty well though. Definitely wanted to capture that feeling in the song.
You play bass in other bands, did that influence you in any way while workshopping these songs?
- Absolutely! Triple Thread is my reggae/rock band and my other project 200 West was more acoustic/indie. I’ve also been playing and recording with other musicians and friends when I can. All of these bands and people inspire me to create and become a better musician. Big ups to Skyler Lutes, Vince Lui, Borocho Obama, Nick the Bartender and Tablemanners. Always love jammin with y’all.
Who are your biggest musical influences and what part, if any, did they play in your creation of the EP?
- RHCP, Sublime, The Clash, The Police, Led Zeppelin are probably my biggest musical influences but for this EP, I was going for a Jack Johnson-Slightly Stoopid-Jason Mraz-type vibe.
Do you have a favorite song?
- In general or of mine? Haha
Any chance of hearing these live at any point?
- Possibly… maybe? haha
What do you hope people take away from hearing your music?
- I just hope that it moves them in whatever way they need; spiritually, emotionally, physically.
Which song is Louie’s favorite?
- Haha, he’s got his own song that I sing to him. Well, that and he’s usually napping anyways. Lazy fat boy Louie.
If you had to describe yourself as a midnight snack, what snack would you be?
- Oh man, I don’t know! My first thought is Oreos with milk, but I think I’m going to go with Top Roman. Easy to make. You can make it your own by adding other ingredients. And everyone cooks it in their own unique way. I guess. Haha, fuck save the toughest question for last! Thanks a lot, Jenna. I’m changing my mind. I want to be an Oreo. Oreo. Oreo. *Wreck it Ralph reference* Hope somebody laughs at that. K byeeee.
Do yourself a favor and find C-Side on your preferred streaming platform. Pre-save “Be Somebody” here and keep an eye out for “Today’s History” — the final drop.
Artist Solo Links: Spotify | Apple Music | YouTube | Instagram