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Kidsday interviews singer Outasight

0589) Singer Outasight with Kidsday reporters Kristy Jahchan

0589) Singer Outasight with Kidsday reporters Kristy Jahchan and Melissa Cooney, buth 13, from Locust Valley at the Grammercy Theater before his concert. (Feb. 14, 2013) Credit: Newsday Pat Mullooly

Last week, we went to the Gramercy Theater in Manhattan to meet Outasight (Richard Andrew). Before meeting him, we were able to sit in on his preconcert soundcheck. He was great, and we liked that we were able to watch him perform four of his songs, and it was just for us!

We love your songs, "Tonight Is the Night" and "Nights Like These." Which one are you most proud of?

I'm proud of the whole album. "Tonight Is the Night" provided me this amazing opportunity to see the world and do some awesome stuff. I'm definitely proud of that, and being able to say I had a hit song. It's kind of cool.

How did you come up with the name Outasight?

I wanted to rap, and when you're a rapper, you need a cool name. I needed a rap name. My first rap name was actually OutSight, which is Outasight without the A. I think the problem with that name is people always misheard it, so they'd be like, "you're outside?" No, I'm whatever. So eventually just through constant doodling in my notebook instead of taking notes, I was [thinking] Outasight actually looks nicer. So I became Outasight.

How do you handle your nerves before you perform?

I don't usually get nervous too much. There's been a few times where nerves were a factor. When I did "X-Factor," I was really nervous because I just had no idea of that kind of world. I wasn't very familiar with it. It was my first time doing TV; I was like, "15 million people, what am I doing?" I just laughed hysterically before I went on. Whoever saw me thought I was out of my mind.

What can someone look forward to in the concerts you'll be doing?

Just a lot of energy. I have the band with me, so I'm really excited about that. We just like to have people have a good time, have fun, dance. It's a lot of energy.

Have you always wanted to be a musician?

Yeah, I wanted to be a musician or a baseball player as a kid. And then once people started throwing like 90 miles per hour, I think I'm going to stick with music. Give me the right choice.

What is it like hearing your songs on the radio?

It's amazing. The first time I heard my song on Z-100 here in New York, I was in my car. I was at a friend's house, and I was driving home, and it came on and it was certainly surreal. I just wanted my song to be on Z-100 for so long. It's awesome.

How did your friends and your family react when they heard how popular you've become?

My family has become my super fans. They're so into what's going on, constantly text me when I'm on the road, like my aunt would be [saying] "How's Madison, Wisc.?" It's a really, really awesome feeling to know that my family is a 100 percent supportive.

What was the hardest adjustment to make when your song became so popular?

The hardest adjustment is catching up to the song almost. Because like your song is big and people don't know who the you are. Everything's happened so fast. It's been like a process of getting more and more people familiar with who I am and more of the music. It's an amazing thing to have a song take off where you don't want it to just define you. For me it's constantly working to get people more and more familiar.

As a child, who inspired you to become a singer?

I grew up loving the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Wonder. Then I got really into hip hop, I don't know, I've always been such a music fan, a music nerd almost. Just obsessed. So many different styles and genres have inspired me.

Is there like a celebrity that you were familiar with that really inspired you? Or would you like to be because of it?

It's funny I walked by Paul McCartney a year ago and I nearly froze. I told you I was a huge Beatles fan growing up. So for me more than being inspired by celebrities, I've always been inspired by music. Just love music, eat, sleep and breath it.

Every kid has a bully. Were you ever teased and do you have any stories, what do you have to say to them now that you're famous?

I never was really bullied too often. There were definitely people in my life who kind of made me feel like I couldn't do what I was able to do. I don't ever say I told you so. Sometimes I've been able to use that as motivation for myself. Like people just being not thinking that I was able to make what was my dreams from an early age into reality. I've used some negativity as positive inspiration for myself.

Is this like the first concert in a tour that you've ever done?

We actually the Ready Set and I did two shows in December, one in Tennessee, one in Wisconsin or somewhere for a radio station. So we got a chance to meet there and we talked about touring and we thought it would be great idea. Everyone got along really well. So this marks off the first day of the tour, but we actually have a few shows that we've done.

What are some of your goals for the future?

Some of my goals is just to get better as an artist, as a person, as a performer, I just want to make better music, put on better shows, keep getting better and keep getting more and more people familiar with my music.

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