Rising star offers fresh, versatile sound
His parents know him as Richard Andrew, his fans know him as Outasight and casual listeners know him for âthat song stuck in my head.â
Just a few years ago, though, few would have known much about the New York native. The unknown singer found himself suddenly catapulted into the music spotlight after his unreleased single âTonight is the Nightâ became the featured song of Pepsiâs âWhoâs Next?â commercial.
Since then, he has cultivated a loyal fanbase through his unique ability to meet the modern demand for dance-all-night tunes. The singer, who has been tearing up arenas all around the United States in support of his first full-length album âNights Like These,â promises that his concert at The Roxy Theatre on Friday will be a night to remember.
âWe play loud, we play fast and weâre going to get the party going and have a good time. Iâm really excited,â Andrew said.
Though Andrew might seem like an overnight success in the music world, he is anything but.
Just a few short years ago, Andrew was a college dropout working as a Brooklyn fry cook to pay for his own studio time. He also spent years driving around to open mics and performing for whomever would listen. In 2007, he released his first mixtape Employee of the Year EP, followed by the release of Radio New York in 2008.
Andrew eventually signed with Warner Brothers Records in 2009. It was at this time Andrew was ready to release âTonight is the Night,â the song that would change his career forever.
His manager, Rene Mclean, submitted Andrewâs demo to Pepsi, which was soliciting energetic party tunes to anchor its upcoming campaign. Despite the fact that Andrew was a long shot, Pepsi evidently heard something in Andrewâs sound and selected âTonight is the Nightâ for its âWhoâs Next?â commercial.
The 60-second spot also included superstars such as Ray Charles, Britney Spears and Michael Jackson, but Andrewâs distinctive sound allowed him to stand out among the titans.
âThat kind of catapulted the song, which was previously unreleased, to a whole new level,â Andrew said. âIt just went from a very organic day-by-day process to a mad rush. It just changed things so dramatically.â
After the release of the commercial, people began to take notice of the singer as someone clearly on the rise in the music industry.
âIt just started right there, hearing your own song on the radio and starting to perform all around the world,â Andrew said. âItâs just a totally different thing â it took off on a whole new level so it was really kind of my breakthrough moment.â
What sets Andrew apart is his unique ability to fuse soul, rap, pop and rock into a futuristic sound. A fan of many genres, he says he never felt the need to choose just one.
âSince I can sing a little bit and rap a little bit, I never felt I had to be necessarily one style of music. So when it comes to writing material, itâs just wherever the inspiration takes me and it kind of goes across genres,â Andrew said.
Andrew has embraced his popularity and ability to connect with his fans, while keeping his feet rooted firmly on the ground. When asked about his tour, he retained a refreshingly youthful exuberance. While discussing the opportunities he has had on the road.
âThe tour has been awesome. Ours has been exceeding expectations really,â Andrew said. âI wasnât necessarily sure what to expect â you never do. We got out on the road and every night the kids are bringing amazing energy.â
For Andrew, itâs all about taking in new experiences.
âItâs so much fun for me because I got my band with me and weâre just crushing shows and having fun,â Andrew said. âItâs just been a great tour. [Iâm] looking forward to going and seeing places I havenât seen [and] just keep building an audience.â