When deciding who to spotlight in our next featured artist post, the decision was an easy one. We have observed Owen Korzec’s career develop as a musician and singer songwriter over the last few years, and feel he is a terrific example for young artists on how to grow and mature as a highly respected performer. His work ethic is well recognized as he is consistent in his drive to achieve his goals and takes every opportunity seriously. No day passes without Owen mastering a new song, writing new melodies or lyrics, or gigging at a new venue.
Owen has a plan and a vision. He knows who he is, and what his strengths and weaknesses are. Rather than focus on only his strengths, he has chosen to work hard on his weaknesses so he can become a well-rounded musician. He believes in continuous training and development with professionals that understand his goals and intense drive for success.
Owen is hands on in every phase of the recording process and if he didn’t know how to do something he taught himself how to do it. Taking on challenges is what has helped him grow as an artist and a singer songwriter.
Owen is the bass guitarist/vocalist and youngest member of the band WildFire, a popular club and wedding band from MA. WildFire has been entertaining at some of the most reputable clubs in the New England area for over decade. Some of the venues WildFire performs at are Capone’s, Polcari’s, Focaccia’s, Whippersnappers, The Scoreboard Bar & Grill and The Stonewood Tavern.
Owen practices with WildFire for a three hour practice each week and has up to three gigs a week. He is also a student at Berklee School of Music and this summer performed bass and sometimes keyboard for Coda Sky doing over a dozen gigs with the band at top venues such as the Hard Rock Café, Hampton Beach Seashell and MIXX360. In addition to his performing, he is developing his vocal and technical skills every day. He is currently not taking classes so he can take time to determine which areas in music he will focus on. He indicated he would love to take all that Berklee has to offer, and wants to be certain that his major and course curriculum is aligned with his career goals. Owen is masterful at using his time and knows how valuable time is in helping him acquire the tools and skills needed to become a standout musician.
Some of Owen’s characteristics and recognized qualities….
- Positive attitude
- Musically gifted
- Responsive; texts and messages are responded to immediately
- Serious about his music and future development
- Always willing to help with a smile on his face
- Supportive of other musicians
We enjoyed getting to know Owen and know he will be an inspiration to so many young artists.
How did you get started in music?
My parents started buying me toy instruments when I was five, so I was always surrounded by music. I also was always banging on pots and pans and was fascinated with the different sounds. The keyboard I got when I was five came with a manual so I started teaching myself how to use it. By the age of 7 I was taking guitar lessons and I was like a sponge and kept wanting more. My dad was a drummer in a band, so he introduced me to a simple drum kit with a snare, high hat and box, and I quickly became obsessed with it. I performed with my dad in blues jams when I was 7 and 8 so I never got nervous performing. I learned the cello in elementary school and transitioned to upright bass in middle school. At 14 I joined a band and fell in love with song writing. It was then I decided I wanted to learn how to sing so that is where I got most of my formal training. Over the years I have had over twenty different teachers and can play six different instruments. It was fun in school as I was able to play all instruments in the jazz band so I bounced around a lot. I love vocal training as it requires much more discipline since it doesn’t come naturally.
What has been your biggest challenge?
Learning how to sing. Playing instruments came naturally, but singing was one thing that didn’t come easily. There was so much I needed to refine to become a singer. I had a gut feeling that with hard work I would be able to do it so I tried to teach myself. After realizing I needed some added guidance, I started working with a teacher online through Skype. He helped so much to get me confidence and get on the right track. Now I know where I am going, as he was helpful in laying out a solid foundation. After a year and half I noticed issues in my voice I needed to fix. It is possible to have great teacher, but after a period of time you can outgrow them. My new teacher, Phil Moufarrege, is a life coach and mentor. He helped me see the big picture. People need to find someone who is willing to help them in all areas of development. I’ve been with Phil for two years. He is from Australia and is now in Japan, as he feels the music culture in Japan is more open-minded. We have a strong relationship and he totally gets me. I am so lucky to be working with him. When you find the right person to train with it transforms you.
What are your future goals?
My top goal is to be more of a leader than a follower. In order to lay down a legacy for myself I would like to lead the way. I am interested in being a singer songwriter and anything unique I can do with that. I want to stand out in some way and figure out a niche place for my music.
I know I love to perform and would be interested in touring. I also would be interested in being a front man in a successful group or show.
What genre will you focus on?
I like pop/rock/indie, but am always incorporating other genres to create a unique mix of music.
How do you get inspired to write?
I have a home studio so I am always creating new music. I like to write when the time is right, not when someone tells me to. If I don’t write for a long time it’s hard to get back into it. I have a gift for writing lyrics, but it can slip away from me if I neglect it.
One exercise I do daily is to select an object when I get up in the morning and write about it for ten minutes. This gets the writing juices flowing.
With music inspiration comes easily to me. If I come up with a quick routine it helps. At school assignments were date specific, and I found those songs were not always my best songs, but still helped me grow as a songwriter.
How much time do you spend on your music?
For me it depends on the day, but it is always a matter of hours. Since it is the backbone of my life I can be at it all day, but on average it is 2-3 hours a day. Each week varies depending on the gig schedule. Performing is good, but I need to balance it with practicing. Performing leads to an incremental improvement and to really improve you need to set aside the time to practice.
What is your top accomplishment?
Teaching myself how to record, mix and master new songs and handle every stage of the process. I built my own studio, so I have the equipment needed to produce a full album. Thus far I have completed eight original songs.
What are some of your daily challenges?
Trying to fit it all in! Playing music is great, but I also have to make sure I am healthy, eat well, get sufficient sleep, network with people who can enhance my career and be involved in all the social media marketing. Taking care of your health keeps you going in the long-term so I can be reliable and fulfill all obligations.
What advice can you give to other young performers?
Best thing to do is find a really good mentor for whatever your main skill is. Find someone more successful than you who can teach you new skills. It is also important to be disciplined and practice even if you’re good at it. If you already have a gifted talent you still need to honor it, enhance it and use it. Don’t take anything for granted and embrace all challenges that come your way. Be open-minded and look for the upside in all opportunities. I am driven by fear in a healthy way, and feel everyone who takes every note they sing or perform seriously will get better results and attention. Don’t underestimate the work it will require to get good and although you may think you know it all, there is always someone doing it better. If you have a gift, you still need to figure out where you are headed.
Owen is always ready and eager to perform. His excitement is infectious and impacts all those around him. The most important message in this spotlight story is that Owen believes in Owen. All artists need to believe in themselves at all times and project a confidence and passion that is effortlessly projected.
Some of Owen’s online links follow: