Caleb Meyers, who grew up in Merriam, Kansas, moved to Los Angeles, and then returned to Kansas City, is a talented singer-songwriter just starting to establish his voice as an artist. We are pleased to share some of Caleb's original songs with you, along with an interview and some of Caleb's personal recommendations on Listen Local.
Tell us about yourself and your work.
I grew up in Merriam, KS, playing music from the time I was 10 years old. After I moved to Los Angeles at 18, I really started to pursue music as an art form. My main goal with my music is to explain to those around me what I'm going through, and if I can help even one person through something similar, or make them feel like they finally have a voice then my career is complete.
Describe your songwriting process. How do you make time for music?
Songwriting is a very bare and honest thing for me. The songs I write are like small glimpses of whatever is going on in my mind at that time. Sometimes they're about missing someone, sometimes they're about feeling insecure in my life, and sometimes they're excited at the thought of something. It usually starts with a single line, from a conversation or a book, and I just know 'I've got to write that'.
Making time for songwriting is difficult. I oftentimes find myself picking up my guitar at 1 or 2 AM because that's the only time I have lined up that I can play for a little bit. As you get older all hobbies become more difficult to make time for, so I go out of my way too set aside at least a few hours a week where it's just me and my guitar.
Where have you performed?
I've played a lot of coffee shops on the West Coast. If I could pass on a piece of advice to any young performer who wants to start playing but doesn’t know where to start, it's play literally ANYWHERE. Open mics, in a park, at a party, anyone who wants to hear you needs to hear you. I once played at an outdoor farmers market in the Ivanhoe district and that was one of the most enjoyable performances I remember.
Who are your musical influences?
My musical influences range from Coheed and Cambria, to Dave Hause, and Jason Lancaster. Frank Turner and Wil Wagner have had a lot of influence on my songwriting process. The most influential person in my personal career has to be Taylor Crawford. I can't count the amount of times that she has pushed me too my potential, and encouraged me to keep my head up when things looked rough.
The Old Man And The Sea by Ernest Hemingway
I think this book really illustrates the futility of the human search for success and serves as a reminder to me to just enjoy the time I have here and not work so hard.
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Classics like this are the reason I still have faith in art in all of its forms. My favorite line from the book is 'Thus ended a day memorable to me. It decided my future destiny'.
Cities by Anberlin (CD)
This album took some time for me too appreciate, but once it stuck to me there was no going back. A true sonic search into the mind and heart of the artists.
Ten by Pearl Jam (CD)
A classic rock album by Pearl Jam, the song "Jeremy" specifically sticks out too me as a harsh reminder of the impact you have on the lives of all of those around you.
Stay Positive by The Hold Steady (CD)
A great reminder that music, is powerful. "Constructive Summer" is an anthem for all of the 'degenerate youth' that are just looking for something too break them out of their suburban boxes. One For The Cutters shakes me too my core every time I listen too it and reminds me of the stark reality of the class system we have created in the world.