16 year old Drew Owen has caused a bit of a stir lately in the world of garage punk. He’s been hyper actively writing and recording catchy lo-fi garage punk shockers under the name SICK THOUGHTS since April, posting more than 30 songs on his bandcamp. He’s already put two tapes out through southpaw and has three 7″s and an LP in the works. Oh, and he is about to play his third show, opening for OBLIVIANS at the Ottobar. Lets see what he has to say for himself.

Christine: So, you’re 16, is this your first musical endeavor?

Drew: Yeah, I’m 16 but I got into music when I was 11 or 12. This (Sick Thoughts) is the first music I’ve recorded. I always wanted to be in a band and put out records but I didn’t think I could do everything by myself.

C: What kind of music were you into at age 11?

D: At first it was y’know the shit your parents listen to like Zeppelin, Elvis, Styx and stuff like that. But then I heard that Beck song “Im A Loser” on the radio, and became obsessed with that dude. I saved my money and collected all the cds i could find of his.

C: It’s so disappointing that he wound up being a Scientologist!

D: Haha yeah, I’m not really familiar with the church of Tom Cruise. That dudes music is still pretty good. I thought it was funny when Jay Reatard did that cover of Gamma Ray, Beck’s sucked and Jay’s was great.

C: What made you decide to record and write everything totally by yourself?

D: I always had this image of me being the guitar player in a band and I’d just let other people do the other instruments. I thought that for a super long time, probably until i was 15. Then I lost all of my friends, wrote a bunch of songs, and just decided to do everything myself.

C: Did you teach yourself drums so you could do these recordings?

D: I got a 50$ drum kit and didn’t know how to play em so I just used the bass drum the snare and the crash and threw everything else away. I taught myself how to play listening to Carbonas records.

C: Do you have a drummer that plays live with you?

D: Yeah, Rob Doesntwantajob.

C: How many shows have you played?

D: 2. 1st one was a little volunteer space that some dude asked us to play. Got blood all over my hands and guitar and hadn’t even sung into a mic before so it was kind of a disaster. The band that played after us were so fuckin weird. Like a 2 piece synth-pop band? 2nd one was opening for Sonny Vincent at an art gallery/bar/venue thing. It was an 18+ up show and they gave me drink tickets to get beers haha.

C: So your 3rd show is with Oblivians?!

D: Yeah, I cant fuckin believe I get to play that shit. I was sittin in school on a computer in June, and i had just put out my first demo tape on the internet, and then I got this email saying “you wanna open for Oblivians?” and I like freaked out and started yelling and got sent to the office to “settle down”.

C: What grade are you in anyway? I can’t remember being 16

D: I’m going into 11th grade. I have to transfer schools so I’m going to a whole new school this year. It sucks. That song Peaked In High school is a fuck you to the kids in my last school. Actually pretty much all my songs are fuck yous.

C: Those are the best kind of songs. Did you grow up in Baltimore?

D: I grew up in Carroll County which is a shitty little place with nothing to do, just outside Baltimore.

C: Probably better than growing up in actual Baltimore?

D: Haha maybe, but I love Baltimore. I’d really love to get a cheap place when I can afford it and set a small studio up with like an 8 track tape recorder and record bands.

C: What drives you to write and record so many songs in such a short amount of time?

D: I guess I write so much shit because I really don’t have any friends, am always in a bad mood, and I’m lonely and bored. I’m really trying to take advantage of the whole internet thing coz when the bands I like were making music they never had a “band camp” or stuff like that. I just like to share everything so people don’t get bored and there’s always something new to listen to.

C: The Internet has really changed music a lot, and has made DIY and getting music out there so much more of a possibility but I also fear that physical copies of things will become meaningless to future generations. How do you feel about that?

D: Records, Vinyl, CDs whatever you name is already meaningless to my generation in my opinion and might even get worse. The kids in my generation don’t even know what a 7 inch is and could care less. As long as they have it on their iPhones and mp3 players. It sucks, but I like being an outsider.

C: How did you come to appreciate vinyl?

D: I cant really remember but I remember buying CDs as a kid and I liked having the physical format and the jacket and stuff. After getting tired of CDs i started going to record stores and buying stuff and got hooked.

C: Why do you think your generation is happy to settle for downloading mp3s and being all about whatever song is popular that week?

D: Most people in my generation just dont appreciate stuff like vinyl, cds or even DVDs. That stuff is too inconvenient for them. Why buy music or a movie in a store, while you could stay at home and get it for free? I guess im just different.

C: Well, you certainly have quite a few projects going right now, in vinyl form, one of which is the 7″ that the label I’m involved with is putting out. What else is happening?

D: The 7″ I’m doing with Southpaw should be out in October and the Goodbye Boozy one should be out early 2014. Dead Beat records just asked me to do an LP so that could possibly be out late 2013

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