We had the good fortune of connecting with Idrise Wardel and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Idrise, do you have some perspective or insight you can share with us on the question of when someone should give up versus when they should keep going?
Giving up isn’t a selectable option for me anymore, but there was a time I had to make THAT my choice. If [insert passion here] is life… giving up on that, is giving up on life. Right? And since I’m not giving up on life, I’ll never give up on music. No matter what the capacity; as an artist, vocalist, writer, producer, engineer, arranger… I do it all whenever its needed. I remember in my 10th year of being active duty military, I had to make the decision to either go for music or give it up and keep doing the military career path. The Voice type casted me and had me come to LA. They offered to pay for flights, hotels, per diem… and the recording contract was there… The exit door was there! It appeared out of nowhere, and it was cuz I was doing music on the side, and by then I had already passed on a few opportunities. I was afraid to let go of my security. The military is FOR SURE.. benefits, salary, retirement….. But this time I had to really think about my life and happiness, and even though I knew it’d be a struggle, NOT taking the chance was gonna be like suicide, killing my purpose and passion…. and life. What I knew in my heart I wanted, it felt like God was giving me that chance, and I ended up taking it after some deliberation. I knew then, there was no turning back. It’s been 4 years not since I left the military and its been even more learning and growing, I love it! I now work with non profit organizations (Music Heals) using my gifts to help others. Being of service (I have learned) is my life’s purpose, and all I have to do, is exist.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am in the studio every day, I came to LA just another artist chasing the dream. Within 3 years, I became a record producer. I was always just helping everyone I could, offering my services, which I had honed over the 10 years prior on the side of the military. I used the GI Bill to pay for a few years of music college, and graduated from 3 programs, music Business, Engineering and Artist Development and Branding. So now I develop artists, starting with the music production, I also train their vocals, then the brand, and consult the artists with their release strategy and follow up actions. If needed I also help them with visuals, or use my network to get them visuals. Video shoots, photo shoots, social media content, etc. I give them a level of quality at literally unbeatable prices be cause I know what it’s like to want label quality but not have label money. Plus, how many engineers you know that is a vocalist, artist and songwriter? I understand artists, when they say they need something a certain way, I get it and I know how to make it happen. Especially singers, it’s hard to find an engineer that has a singers ear, because most engineers aren’t singers.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
THE STUDIO! Sounds crazy but some of the best vibes you will ever get, are in a creative space like a recording studio. Honestly I am too booked to even go out and do much anymore….. Otherwise, I would just take them to do some outdoor activities, it seems to be the thing people love to do in LA. The nightlife is my thing, I like to do karaoke bars and bowling haha.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to give a shoutout to Carlos Battey (singer/songwriter) and Luigie Gonzalez (Record Producer/Composer). These are the two industry pros that convinced me that I was good enough to pursue a career in the music industry. Their faith in me gave me sparked a flame inside that grew quickly, and eventually I had that same faith in myself. Now I make it my mission to do the same for others! If I can, I’d also like to shoutout Ozz Saturne (Producer) and Mike Stoller (Songwriter) invited me into the non-profit world and offered me the chance to serve the under-served, and it is one of the most rewarding things I have ever done with my musical talents.