Music, Energy and Connection: Andy Suzuki & The Method – at Waterside

Few things invigorate than more music. And seeing the performers live brings a special kind of magic. We have three amazing summer concerts, we hope that you will love! Our events are free of charge so please attend and feel free to invite your friends.

And if you’re a Waterside Resident, the entertainment is right outside your door!

Andy Suzuki & The Method on Wednesday, August 9th (Note: This was rescheduled from July 12th.)

With soulful lyrics, lush sounds and fantastic instrumentals, Andy Suzuki and The Method often sound like more than the three-person band they are. Comprised of half-Japanese, half-Jewish American Andy Suzuki and Nigerian percussionhooist, Kozza Olatunji-Babumba, the NYC-based group often uses the personal to address the challenges “hyphenated” Americans face.

We spoke to Andy about their music – and their upcoming Waterside performance.

Andy Suzuki & The Method: At Waterside, NYC - July 12th, 2017

For people not familiar with your music, why do you think they’ll love it? What’s going to draw them in?

The energy, definitely the energy.

We’ve played so many shows all across the country for so many years and so we’re at home on stage. And I think people love to see that – see a band that is really comfortable up there and is having fun.

That’s key – that people have fun!

Yes, our live show is super exciting and fun. We call our style, “Future pop with an R&B vibe.”  And we’re going to have a full band.

What I enjoy most about a live performance is when I see artists taking risks on stage – and definitely our show is all about taking risks on stage.

Waterside has a very diverse community – and one of the focuses of your band is the cultural blend – the “hyphenated aspect” – of both your music and your band members.

Yes, my dad was born in Japan and met my mom after he went to college. So they met in New York City: They were working for the same company, at the Pan Am – now MetLife – Building, right above Grand Central Station.

My mom is from Queens, she’s a Jewish New Yorker, and they met – and here I am.

I went to Brown University, where I met my main collaborator, the other main band member, Kozza Babumba. His grandfather is a super famous Nigerian percussionist, a Grammy-winner, pretty much the first guy playing West African music in the US, Babatunde Olatunji.

Kozza was playing shows with him on West African percussion like Djembe since before Kozza could even really walk. Kozza’s father is Ugandan.

We hit it off at Brown, became friends and then started making music.

We’ve always had super eclectic music tastes and we both grew up with and still have a love for hip-hop – one of the things that brought us together. But we also love acoustic singer/songwriter stuff and indie and electronic stuff. So there’s a lot happening with our music.

Andy Suzuki & The Method: At Waterside, NYC - July 12, 2017

That diversity, all the different cultures and influences, is a huge part of New York.

That’s one of the best parts about New York.

What’s your favorite part of entertaining? What do you love?

We spend weeks, maybe months writing these songs, getting them on record and mixing in all the stuff. It’s this huge process that goes into about four minutes of music. But, live, I love how in those four minutes, there are all these nooks and crannies in the song that I didn’t even really know existed, that come from discovering and setting up how we’re playing it live. Where can we extend the song? Where can we put in a new drum breakdown? Where can we put in an audience participation part?

It’s different every night, even the same song is different every night because if you’re willing to do the exploration and take some risks there’s so much, so many things that can happen.

That’s what I love.

We’re so excited to have you play on the Plaza. Have you ever been to Waterside before?  

Yes! I used to live right near there and I would go run by the water and I’d be so curious about the buildings. I’d go on the steps, run around, it was all so cool.

Oh! That’s so great.

I actually went to a party there once. So I know exactly the spot we’ll be playing at and it’s beautiful.

What do you think like a band’s goal should be at an event?

My favorite shows are the ones where I feel like it’s a really an immersive experience and I forget that I’m a human and I forget everything that has happened that day and I’m just there.

I’m there, I’m fully present – and I’m engrossed.

That’s what a good performance is all about.

(Register here for the show)