|Passion pays off|
|Written by Ryan Fields|
|Thursday, 08 December 2011|
2009 OC Transpo strike leads to surprise benefits for one Algonquin student
For some people, it is obvious from a young age what they are destined for. For Alex Sharp, 21, destiny involved music and a lot of singing.
“I started playing music formally when I was about five with the piano,” said Sharp, “but apparently I was always singing. At three-years-old my favourite song was Shantilly Lace by The Big Bopper which I sang any and everywhere. ‘Hellooo Baaaaaby! This is the Biiiig Boppa!’"
Now attending Algonquin in the small and medium enterprise management program, Sharp is a vocalist and guitarist for rock/hip-hop/funk band The Fantastic Flow.
Coming together in the gloom of the 2009 OC Transpo bus strike The Fantastic Flow, formerly The Outaouais Flow, started off as a way for members Benoit Blanchard, Wes Reed and Sharp to keep their sanity while stuck in their apartments during the cold winter months.
“We were all acoustic (Guitar, Bass, and Djembe) and were just jamming in our apartment for fun,” said Sharp. “Our next door neighbour hated us.”
Describing the music as a mixture between The Red Hot Chili Peppers and Rage Against The Machine, Sharp was influenced by the music he grew up listening to.
“I grew up on Led Zeppelin, loved anything heavy and hated rap for the first 10 years of my life,” said Sharp. “This was probably because of the selection of radio stations Ottawa had to offer in the ‘90s. When I heard Bring The Noise by Anthrax and Public Enemy on the Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 game, it was a done deal.”
Emerging from the snowy winter of 2010, The Flow have quickly gone about making a name for themselves. Since January of 2010 the band has entered studios with producer Bryan Ruckstuhl to release their debut EP, opened a show for Canadian hip-hop artist KO, completed Live 88.5fm’s Big Money Shot (winning the band $5,000 towards band development), been on the A-Channel, played on the radio, and last year they even rented a moving truck and PA system and drove into the Byward Market and played for an unsuspecting crowd.
Sharp says he definitely plans on applying what he has learned at school to his musical career outside of school.
“ The SME course teaches you skills that are widely applicable,” said Sharp. “I took this course to help me in a few areas and managing the band is one of them. If the band ever reaches a level beyond my managing abilities it's always good to be able to understand the books. There are a lot of people trying to take advantage of you in this industry,” added Sharp.
Whether they are playing shows in the Market, jamming in their apartment, or applying business knowledge to their music career, one thing is certain: The Flow can’t be stopped.
The Fantastic Flow will be playing their next show December 23rd at The Rainbow with friends, Wise, Young and King.
|Last Updated ( Thursday, 08 December 2011 )|
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