Aside from being a master-level instrumentalist, Pachyman is a breezy, fun-loving, and freedom seeking artist. Always welcoming the outside with open arms, it’s rare to see a challenge that goes unconquered by Pachyman. His works are a well sonically seasoned mix, in which his Puerto Rican roots shine bright and are elevated by a layer of funkadelic grooves and topped with a chill reggae thump. The rich, worldly perspective Pachyman possesses, allows him to expand and highlight the specific origin of sounds that are often found in the mainstream music we all love. He gets down, dirty, and raw with the instrumentation and sound engineering, resulting in the skill to deeply explore genres to their purest degree. A true musical scientist, Pachyman is a modern pioneer of World beats. Read on as SPIN takes a moment to speak with Pachyman about his inspirations, a pivotal learning moment in his career, going on tour with Khruangbin, and more.
Who is Pachyman and what do you stand for?
Pachyman is the producer, multi instrumentalist, selecter and general positive energy creator alter ego of Pachy García. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, migrated to Los Angeles at the age of 26 to pursue more musical connections and like minded individuals. Pachyman stands for the community. The Immigrants. The queers, gender variants, gender non conformists, trans and LGBTQ+ community. The creatives and artists that are constantly trying to reinvent themselves. The underdogs, deep listeners, lovers, strugglers and all races around the globe. Pachyman is a water-bearer for all.
Tell us about your sound – where does your style originate from and what have been your biggest visual, social, and sonic influences?
I’m constantly inspired by Jamaican records from the 70s and 80s and a lot of the sonic influences come from Channel 1 Studios and King Tubby/Scientist mixing techniques. I also listen to a lot of krautrock, experimental stuff, old jazz funk records & synth punk. I gather a lot of visual inspiration from old records but also many contemporary visual artists that I admire as well.
Was there a definitive turning point to your success? When did you realize the magnitude of your impact within the industry/community?
I started making videos of the recording process of the songs and posting them on Instagram. When the first quarantine lockdown of 2020 happened I started making more light hearted fun songs to create a positive impact for the people who were watching the videos since I knew we were all in lockdown together. Soon after, I started receiving a lot of messages of people that were going through hardships saying that they looked forward to the videos every week. They were making people happy and giving people a little break from all the bad news that was going around. It made all the work so much more meaningful to me and I started seeing people sharing the videos constantly and I knew something good was happening.
Talk to us about a pivotal learning moment in your career.
When I started working with ATO Records everything started being amplified to a degree that I couldn’t believe. The team there is amazing and they believe in me and in my work. They helped me extend my music and message. So many new fans are reacting to it so positively and it continues to be heard everyday by new people that immediately get turned on by the world of Pachyman.
In what ways have you pushed yourself beyond existing self-imposed limitations?
Well not only do I produce and write all the music but I also play all the instruments. I taught myself how to play drums and to think like a drummer. Coming from a pianist background, it takes a lot to figure that out. I also record every instrument so the Pachyman project really took a lot of figuring out how to be an audio engineer apart from knowing how to play instruments. I would say this project has pushed me to achieve things I would have never imagined I could do.
An inevitable part of creating any artistic project is the transformation you undergo. Oftentimes, we exit the process with more wisdom of how we perceive the world around us – How has the process of creating your upcoming LP, The Return Of… expand your perception of music, life, and yourself?
It definitely showed me that I don’t have to pigeonhole myself into any particular genre and gave me the confidence to try things outside of my grasp even if it means that I have to learn and practice a new set of skills to achieve it. I practiced acting on what excites me musically and emotionally while recording this album and I came off the deep end as a more grateful human, especially after seeing the reaction of others to my work.
Is there anything on the horizon that you can share with us?
I’m super excited to open for Khruangbin on their upcoming September tour! That band has been a big inspiration for me. I will also be going on my first european tour in February 2022 and playing a festival in Cancún Mexico right after. Very excited about going to different countries and cities to share my music!
Any last words for the SPIN-verse?
Order my new record “The Return Of…” on ATO! Its coming out on August 13th and you can order it directly and pre-save it on my website www.pachyman.com
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