A Chiefers Sit Down With: Unusual Demont

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A breakout musician over the pandemic and an all-around good person Unusual Demont continues to impress. Following the success of his hit single, “Amber”, Demont has been a busy man. That’s why I’m surprised that I got the time to sit down and talk about his debut EP, influences, and current headspace.

Heath: So let’s start at the beginning. Let’s talk a little bit about your upbringing. What made you want to make music?

Demont: My grandfather was a drummer with Curtis Mayfield, so there was always music in the house from day one. It was something I was surrounded by. He taught me how to play the drums, and I also wrote songs when I was young. But what made me make the music I make today was when I was 13. I heard Tyler’s Wolf, and from that point, I knew I wanted to try to make music. I found out he produced all his stuff, and I thought that was sick. I wanted to make somebody else feel the way I felt listening to this.

Heath: That makes a lot of sense. Have you been dabbling in producing your records? 

Demont: Yeah, so with this one that I’m working on right now, I got help from a few friends. This is the first situation where I am working with others production. I opened up to it, and it turned out great. I did produce two of the songs on the upcoming Hues project, so I’m excited for people to hear those.

Heath: Kyle sent it over to me last week, and I’ve been listening to it throughout, just getting a vibe for the record. My favorite track is “Gold”. What made you do that? 

Demont: Lowkey, I almost scraped “Gold”. It was such a different vibe for me; I’ve always been into afro beats, but with that one, I was like, “Is this me?”. I relistened to the melodies, and it just turned out fantastic.

Heath: Yeah, that one, in particular, stood the hell out. It’s funny because I met Kyle through a discord group at the beginning of the pandemic, and he was helping me understand what an EPK was. He sent me your EPK right before “Amber” really started going crazy on Spotify. During that time, could you recount how your life was changing?

Demont: Yeah, it was very peaceful. On a side note, I hate my EPK so much. It was the first time I ever did it, so I was trying to figure out how to say “Be yourself, a self-described weirdo,” and that shit makes me cringe every time I read it.

Heath: I remember reading that. 

Demont: To this day, people still use it. I agree; I’m just trying to figure out a different way of saying it. But anyway, in the beginning, days of “Amber”, I knew I had a hit. I feel like most artists know when they do. Lowkey, right before “Amber” I was waking up in the morning, eating healthy, just trying to make sure I was fully relaxed. I was so excited that I was about to share a song that would do some shit for me. And it did!

Heath: After I got the EPK and I looked at it, it made a lot of sense. And then I heard the record, and it did some amazing things. I know you’re probably tired of talking about it, so I’m not going to harp on it, but it’s crazy.

Demont: Dude, it’s crazy. It’s surreal.

Heath: Definitely. Alright, let’s move forward to your new music. So you’re about to release this project. What were your main influences going into it sonically?

Demont: Sonically, I don’t listen too much when I make music because I don’t want to end up doing something similar to somebody else. But I will say Tyler has considerably influenced me, not even sonically, but Igor got a Grammy. It put a lot into perspective for me. It made me realize, “So you can just do what you think is cool, and people will eventually rock with it”. Seeing that made me turn the corner in terms of making what makes me happy. The story of the EP goes a little deeper about me being into magazines and colors at the time. I’d read all these color-filled magazines, and they made me feel good. My music was also making me feel good, so they both intersected. I started having color-titled songs, which is why the whole project is called Hues. I wanted the music to make people feel good in the same way those colors did for me. 

Heath: With that being mentioned, what made you want to dig into that specifically? The magazines and colors it’s fascinating.

Demont: I wish I knew what sparked my attention to it, but I know that it was around early 2020. I was working a job that I hated, and every day it would be the same cycle of me going to work and going to the Starbucks next door. I did get a coffee, but highkey, I was just trying to get out. Anyways, it was a Barnes and Nobles Starbucks, so they had racks of magazines, and one day I just opened one. It was a point in my life where it became repetitive. Life started beating my ass. But I opened the magazine and looked at these colors. I felt content. I don’t understand it myself, but it just felt good looking at it. From there, I realized that I was super into just colors in general. I would look outside and be like, damn, that tree really treeing it up over there type shit. After all of that, l just wanted to bring this to other people.

Heath: I’m excited for fans to hear the whole EP in totality. I like it, and I know everybody else is going to enjoy it. I saw that you just did a show in Chicago and also that you’re about to go on tour with Emotional Oranges. Are you ready to hit the road?

Demont: I’m so excited to begin touring. That crowd in Chicago was just crazy. It’s so surreal. I was like, put your hands up, and they put their hands up. It’s a fantastic feeling since I’ve been making music for a hot minute now. I played some songs that people don’t even know. These songs I practiced in my room expecting to take off, like, three years ago. They finally got their chance to do what I knew they would. It’s very validating, especially since my parents were fed up with me. 

Heath: It’s a full-circle moment. I’m beginning to experience those feelings as well. I make music and just signed a deal with Sony earlier this year. So I know how it is when your parents are like, “You need to focus on XYZ,” and all you can say is, “No, mom, this is working! Trust me, trust me!”.

Demont: And you can’t even show proof of it to them because it’s lowkey not working. You know it will come at some point. But congrats, I’m proud of you. 

Heath: Thanks, I appreciate you. I’m glad you’re having these full-circle moments; as you say, it’s validating. I know you’ve put hours and hours in. Just getting that moment is probably the fuel you need to go for 20 more years. 

Demont: I feel you; it’s so exciting.

Heath: Is there anything you necessarily want to get off your chest? It could be about anything. It doesn’t even have to be about music. 

Demont: I’m about to be corny but do shit that makes you happy. It’s very cliche, and people say that all the time, but I feel like not enough people do it. Do what makes you happy, don’t worry about anything else. 

Heath: And those are words that will probably impact some people who are more hesitant to go after what they want. I appreciate that.

Demont: I appreciate you taking the time today.

Heath: It means a lot to have these conversations with artists.

Demont: Likewise.

Heath:  You have a good rest of your day, man. And I hope to talk to you soon.

Demont: Thank you, much love.

Follow me at @heath__240 to keep up with my upcoming interviews and special thanks to Ambar Mantilla for transcribing this interview.