Alec Shaw says his new album is the most genuine music he’s made.
“Thinking Place,” the indie-pop singer-songwriter’s latest album, peers into his mind. It’s a soulful, delicate and vulnerable journey through Shaw’s experiences with romance, loss and crippling self-doubt.
“I feel like all the songs are coming from an honest place, which I didn’t know I cared about before this record,” he said. “You feel a lot more ownership in what you’re making.”
Now on a West Coast tour, Shaw, 21, of Renton, will perform with his band Aug. 23 at Black Lab Gallery in Everett.
Shaw’s music is inspired by Grammy Award-winning indie folk band Bon Iver and incorporates synthesizers, piano, keyboard, percussion, guitar and bass. He switches between lead and rhythm guitar.
He performs in the Seattle area including at Chop Suey, The Moore Theatre and Sunset Tavern. He also played an acoustic version of the national anthem at The Gorge at the Sasquatch! Music Festival in 2018.
It was a chance meeting at Chop Suey last year that led to one of the biggest breaks of his career so far: an opportunity to collaborate with Seattle producer Andy Park, who has worked with such big names as Ciara, Pedro The Lion and the late Mac Miller.
Park helped shape Shaw’s new album.
“I was sending him demos constantly and he would give me honest critiques,” Shaw said. “He’d let me come up with the big parts and the arrangements, but he was more focused on the core of the songs, which is what takes it the furthest.”
For a musician who is still waiting for a breakthrough, Shaw said working with Park was an invaluable experience.
He’s most proud of the song “Alone In My Bed.” Written while feeling hopeless about his music career, the song portrays Shaw’s emotional rollercoaster. But it ends on an optimistic note.
“I have these huge dreams and they felt far away,” he said. “Figuring those feelings out and why I was feeling that was therapeutic. That’s why I think it’s such a great song, because it came out of those emotions, rather than me just trying to make a song.”
“Awake” release party
Eve Clarke, a singer-songwriter from Marysville, is releasing her debut solo album, “Awake,” featuring original acoustic pop-rock inspired by Aerosmith, Guns and Roses, Metallica and Bon Jovi.
She’s having a release party for the album at 8 p.m. Aug. 23 at High Dive, 513 N. 36th St., Suite G, Seattle.
Clarke’s set will include songs from “Awake” and some of her favorite covers. Guest performers at the party will include Brian Davis, formerly of the Seattle band Saqqara.
Clarke, 45, was a frontwoman for hard rock bands in the Seattle area, including Know Domain, Starshifter and Rev 3. She also is the lead guitarist in One Big Hand, currently on hiatus.
Strutz Party in the Park
Arlington’s own Strutz band is putting on a show this Saturday.
Strutz Party in the Park is set for 3 to 9:30 p.m. Aug. 24 at Legion Park, 114 N. Olympic Ave., Arlington. Two acts will play: Strutz, featuring classic rock from the 1970s and ’80s, and the Michelle Taylor Band, from Marysville, which plays blues, country and rock.
Previously, Strutz organized a two-day classic rock festival called StrutzFest in Darrington. This party in the park replaces that.
Tickets are $20 and available at Brown Paper Tickets. The 21-and-older event will have a beer garden.
Evan Thompson: 425-339-3427, firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @ByEvanThompson.
If you go
Alec Shaw and his band will perform with Snohomish’s Public Theatre and Seattle musician Moody Bear at 8 p.m. Aug. 23 at Black Lab Gallery, 1618 Hewitt Ave., Everett.
The show, for ages 21 and older, is $10 at the door. More at www.facebook.com/blacklabgallery.
This story has been modified to correct the day of Strutz Party in the Park. The event is Saturday.