Q1. Please tell us about yourself, what you do within the music industry?
My name is Phinestro, I am a Film Composer/ Record producer/ DJ , Sound designer , musician. I work closely with brands, artist , DJs, Film and TV production crews worldwide to the best of my ability, provide them the sounds they need to expand to outside markets and consumers.
Q2. How did you first get introduced to music?
WOW This is a long story.. but my Family original from Haiti, we have music in our blood. I found out my Great grandfather use to be a lead musician at the palace of Haitian government. Grandma told me they played “Jazz” which interprets to Haitian Konpa roots music playing the saxaphone. So it ws inevitable to NOT play music because growing up, i had more instruments then i had video games. So it was very natural to jump on my older brothers mini yamaha synthesizers, to his karaoke machine to acoustic guitar and my mom tambourine or sisters electric piano. I recall when i was young, my cousins who lived in spring valley nyc (upstate) come down in the weekends to sleep over since the church was in Brooklyn, we would have our own little family music showcase. I was too young to do any performance but i remembered seeing my brothers sing and play guitar, my cousins do a Gospel group function with crazy harmony remakes of pop songs. My father played the guitar. To be honest wasn’t really the reason why i played because i started playing the piano by ear, then played the Saxaphone. It wasn’t until i was like 8 years old, my brother who played in church and lead services played acoustic guitar. One time i sneaked into his room to play it. i poped his string and i got a nice whopping for it. I knew that string was so valuable, there was something powerful behind the guitar so at the age of 8 , started fiddling it and learnt t play by ear as i was listening to a lot of CD 101.9 (was a smooth jazz station) first song i learned to play (bass notes) to George benson song, “Breezin” which was my favorite. As I gain more music knowledge and , went to play Alto Sax at age 12- 16 years old. From church marching band to school jazz band. It wasn’t until 15 as i was flirting in between guitar and sax, i stayed on the guitar by way of watching Jimi hendrix live at woodstock on Vh1 classic. I never forget that first time seeing him do that to create all those sounds out that guitar man!.. that got me chills up my spine. Changed my life. and the rest was history.
Q3. What are your inspirations?
My inspirations.. believe it or not, is everything. First and foremost i get my inspirations from my void, my pain. I went through a lot of experiences growing up, and even years relationship wise. I didn’t grow up with much of my father around. although he was a financial backing force in my sports and music, although he wasn’t around, i had older brothers who showed me how to be a man, and being that they are bother talented songwriters, and musicians, I would go out to see them perform in concert, and see the VHS they would bring home some Anita Baker, or earth wind and fire, and gospel music from Clarke Sisters… then as i got older, i was heavy inspired by japanese animations. Manga, to even as i grew older, sounds inspire me. Just hearing conversations, the little things that i hear in NYC would freak you out! That’s what so often when i do my #Phinestroflips on instagram, are short examples of seeing things that people do not even know can be used for musical composition, and flip it to be something great.
What also inspires me is children. Working with and teaching children in Harlem really got me to a new level of inspiration. They are droppoig so many golden nuggets i can’t even emphasize how much they teach me in technical aspect to knowing the urban music market. And lastly my friends internationally. I have amazing friends from UK, Canada, Germany, Australia who are brutally honest in and also exposing me to great music. I take in everything like a sponge and apply it to my music repertoire .
Q4. Who are your musical idols?
Musical idols, WOW there is SO many! Its not in order of importance but I’ve always been heavy into George Benson, Jazz guitarist singer, performer. Great sound , sings with conviction and timeless. Also as far as versatile energy and just a bomb shell of influence, PRINCE. And on flip side, I am heavy into pioneers of the game, J DIlla hiphop guru such as this icon opened my ears to even marketing ideas how to shape and sample my sound into something new through my #Phinestroflips. online.. Jimi Hendrix. hands down. , to stevie wonder, john coltrane. oh man!!! so many!!
Q5. What music equipment do you currently use?
My current setup my home studio, I have a Avid Mbox, using MXL4000 mod neuman *for sampling/ acoustic references, Native instruments Maschine, Abelton launch pad, 2 guitars ( Parker guitar and a custom Scarred guitars build ) a vintage yamaha 1980’s bass, mini aximon portable controller, reference sony speakers for playback and believe it or not, my iPhone. yes. My iPhone is an instrument. I use it to sample a lot of things and ideas. believe it or not, i had done some records which i recorded myself and others and have been made well to be an instrument used on the track. lol As you can see, i am very minimalistic. LOL
Q6. What is your biggest musical achievement to date?
Hands down. just recently, I have a landed a Major placement of which is an original music I scored strings to the 90 Second PSA which got picked up on Sony Pictures and Marvel called “we are super Heroes” for this non profit organization called ” World Wide Orphans” you can listen to it here —> https://soundcloud.com/
This was crazy, i didn’t even believe it until I got the dvd popped it in and saw the wonderful piece i created for the Brand/ non profit organization. Its so crazy because, like I would of never imagine that someone like me, a brooklyn haitian, get to a level like that, which contents of dvd with other great musician/ producers like Hans Zimmer and Pharelle on the same content? and Sony and Marvel? I was speechless i cried. YES i cry. I’m a grown man is not afraid to show my emotions .
And also winning part of being selected for #teamusa for beat academy ‘s producer beat battle .#battleoftheamericas USA VS CANADA winning the EDM round and total title with the team at NXNE was major too. I got to meet and spend time with young guru, and then next day with Jake Uno and S-1 . That was Such an amazing thing!!
Q7. How long have you been working in the music industry?
It felt like I have been working in the industry for a LONG time. I think it officially started when i was 17 When i used to play for my brother. I was a MD for the band. And play as a house band member in harlem venue called “Shrine”. My brother , Prince Jamir, Use to play a lot in city like industry parties and events. So i was very exposed in that and when i was in college, i attended Liberty University, I use to tour with a Gospel group called “Chosen’ being exposed to amazing musicians who later (now) are well known Grammy producers, song writers and engineers. Its crazy how small the world is, i am just grateful to be placed around greatness. My first big break was actually when after i moved on from my brothers band, I played with this artist name Colee, which I had the opportunity to play in LA in Lenny S (former Def Jam Island CEO/president) Radio show. It was a dream come true to play in LA near Kodak theater and be in the midst of amazing music scene.
Q8. What are your musical plans for the future?
My musical plans for the future, or even right now, I am putting together a worldwide project. over the years, i have been collaborating with musicians, DJ, and producers and singer/songwriters worldwide which I NEVER MET ! only on Skype or Facebook and soundcloud. I am doing a documentary about my life and how we are all connected. through the main source of soundcloud, being that it was the main source of at the time i started producing music, connected me to all these amazing people like Wali Finkbeiner from Argetina, Tihamer Je from Germany, Adiyat from Dubai , india, to Paul , Nick and Kym from Uk, All who which i met
via online. and this is a very interesting documentary of a story of a young man from Brooklyn NYC.
Who was in this over saturated NYC competitive place where he feared of not getting heard, and always the underdog, overshadowed by greatness of people around, So he taps to online social media, meets amazing people he creates music, and as he is creating music, he gets better and better, and eventually, releases a track with perspective interview. Thats my future goal. open that channel , break barriers, and expose people in my own town, city, to go out, and be an example to create a worldwide connective network music collective in efforts to work close with publishing companies, labels and curate yearly festivals, and create opportunities for artist and people like myself who seek to gain more music knowledge and a complete product with a story behind the exciting adventure. Thats my future plans. Expand worldwide
Q9. Where do you see yourself in 10 years time?
10 years, i will be debt free, with kids, retired from working a “9-5” or in my case the “3-7” job, 2 houses, and 1 pet, have my own label/ entertainment company worldwide, and a non profit which helps urban youth get exposed to music by exchange studio . music programs to facilitate holistically
as weird as this sounds, I would of already obtained a degree in engineering, but also, will get into acting and launching my fashion line. I love formal and casual designing my own cloths. Thats my 10 year plan. i hope i didn’t overdue it mate! haha
Q10. Do you have any links to your social media pages you would like to share?