I became aware of Ian Crosstown and the group SRC when a mutual friend posted the band’s music video for “Ambition” on his Facebook page. Thanks to Rick Kozan for connecting us so I could do this interview. SRC is a Los Angeles-area band with more original music coming along soon.
ANTHONY: Hi Ian, thanks for taking a few minutes to chat with me. Let’s talk about “Ambition.” What inspired the song?
IAN: “Ambition” was inspired by the concept of being down and out and then seeing a light! Ambition can represent different things to different people. It could be a person having a realization and finding their way out of a depression. It could be a person hating their job and realizing that there are other better jobs that exist. It could be a person in a very destructive relationship and having the courage and strength to get out of it. For some people it could be finding a religion. This song was written to inspire people to find their ambition whatever it may be.
ANTHONY: Did you write it on your own, or in collaboration with someone?
IAN: I came up with the concept of “finding your ambition,” then I collaborated musically with Vidal and Ace who are the other two members of this band- SRC. Ace is a phenomenal vocal talent and songwriter and Vidal possesses amazing guitar and bass skills. It is very exciting creating music with musicians of this caliber.
ANTHONY: How has response been since you released the video?
IAN: The responses we have been receiving from listeners have been overwhelmingly good. The general consensus has been that the message is inspiring, the music and vocals are strong, and the song sticks in listeners heads after the first time it is heard. We are a band from Los Angeles and people all over the world have contacted us since this video has recently been released.
ANTHONY: Tell us a little bit about filming the video: where was it done, how long did it take? What were you aiming for visually in connection with the lyrics?
IAN: The video was filmed in a number of different locations. The darker shots were filmed at the Salton Sea in California. If you are not familiar with the Salton Sea, it is a very depressed city with a very interesting history. It is worth searching it on the Internet. The ocean and beach shots were filmed in Seal Beach, CA. The rural shots were filmed in Chino Hills, CA. The city shots were filmed in downtown Los Angeles.
Recording the music and filming the video took approximately six months. At times it can be a very laborious process but the satisfaction and gratification when it is finished makes it a labor of love.
In connection with the lyrics, we wanted the video to accentuate the feelings of a person who is “torn up and raw.” We wanted to convey a turning point from being down and out then finding ambition. Additionally, we wanted to send the message of not giving up. The lyrics in the song are, “I was spinning around, I was falling down, but I picked myself up off the ground.”
ANTHONY: What’s your song-writing process like?
IAN: For “Ambition,” I came up with the concept for the lyrics and a skeleton idea of the music. Ace and Vidal have an uncanny ability to interpret the ideas and bring them to fruition musically. They are extremely talented musicians and we are all in sync when we are working together.
ANTHONY: Has your changed at all since you started writing music?
IAN: This project is relatively new, but all of the music we have been working on so far has generally followed the same process.
ANTHONY: What other projects are you working on now?
IAN: We are currently recording more songs and the production of a new video is just getting started. Additionally, we are booking dates to play live shows. We have all had extensive touring experience so SRC is looking forward to playing in all of our listeners’ cities.
ANTHONY: And my usual closing question: What is your favorite book, and what would you say to someone who hasn’t read it to convince them that they should?
IAN: Very difficult question! However, if I have to narrow it down, I am a huge Tom Wolfe fan! Tom Wolfe clearly does his research before writing his books. He makes astute cultural observations, he has a brilliant sense of humor, and the reader is drawn into his storylines.
I love all of his works but I am particularly fond of A Man in Full. If you enjoy satire, intriguing plots, the ability to clearly visualize characters and settings, you need to read A Man in Full. Tom Wolfe has helped us find our Ambition!