Coming out of Toronto, up and coming talent Dré Meloche brings us R&B with a modern twist with his newest track. Following last year’s release of his most recent single ‘Sign‘, Dré returns with a new track titled ‘The Night Changes Us.’ Inspired by personal events, ‘The Night Changes Us’ follows Dré’s his signature style by mixing different musical sounds and bringing them together.
XMPL got the chance to interview Dré Meloche regarding his creative process, musical influences, overcoming struggles and more. Read the full interview and listen to Dré’s latest tracks ‘The Night Changes Us’ and ‘Sign’ below:
XMPL: You have a lot of confidence behind your voice in your music. Can you tell us what made you want to become a singer?
Dré: Well…there was always music playing in my house growing up. My dad was a massive fan of Country, Blues, Folk, Motown, Funk, Soul and sang to me constantly. My older sister also had an amazing musical palette and got me listening to R&B, Indie, Ska & Jazz. -she sang as well. So, I was surrounded by people who really prioritized having good music in their lives; people I looked up too. That’s what sparked my curiosity in the beginning. Looking back now, I think the moment I decided to start singing was when my dad showed me videos of Elvis performing -I think it was his black leather comeback special. He was singing and the crowd was just going wild. Every move he made, every note he sang moved people. There are shots of people screaming at the top of their lungs, people passing out people loosing it for this guy on stage. I think that really made an impression on me. I was like, “I want to make people feel like that.”
As a songwriter how would you describe the creative process of writing a song?
For me, the writing process is never really the same twice. Sometimes I come up with a melody first, sometimes lyrics, sometimes a chord progression. It’s always different. I just record and write down every idea that ever pops into my head -if it’s a good one and go back over it, elaborate and flesh it out more and more until it’s a complete thought…or song. Usually my inspiration comes from what I am currently experiencing in life as an individual. But on occasion I’ll get really inspired by different visuals. It could be beautiful landscape, a painting or even a person.
Your single ‘The Night Changes Us’ is very lyrical, holds amazing vocals and has a beat you can easily vibe with. What is the meaning behind the track and did it come out as you envisioned it?
Haha,-uhm. This track is probably the craziest tune I’ve ever written just because of how it was conceived. I was up at my ex-girlfriends cottage with some of her friends and in her cottage there were these massive windows facing out onto a lake. So, one morning after a somewhat wild night, I was sitting at the kitchen table at the opposite side of the cottage, looking across the living room at my ex who was standing on this old wooden chest in front of the windows trying to get cell reception. Honestly, the way the light was shining in -it just looked amazing. That’s why the opening line of the song is “silhouette caught my gaze” and later “frozen in time in your window design” the whole songs pretty much about someone standing in front of a window -haha. I got home from my trip and started with that chord progression you hear the first synth come in on and it just grew from there. Top to bottom it came out exactly how I heard it in my head. It was a pretty crazy moment.
When we saw you at Phog Lounge, you were playing your acoustic guitar and getting lost in your performance. How important are live shows for an upcoming artist like yourself?
I think they are super important. Entertaining people has always been a massive passion of mine and when people come out to see me I not only want them to enjoy what they are hearing but I want them to be captivated visually as well. I went to school for musical theatre and performance is a big part of the curriculum. They literally teach you the theory behind holding peoples attention. It’s pretty wild. But yeah -I just love it man. Playing live is definitely my happy place.
In 2016, you featured on ‘Set Me Free’ by Ranec and Kacper Kawala – the track sounds like it was a fun project. Are there any artists you would like to work with on creating a new single?
Yeah, it was super fun. I wrote ‘Set Me Free’ while I was working as a production singer on my first Norwegian Cruise Line contract. I knew right away I wanted it to be a dance tune so I got it out to Ranec who showed it to Kacper who then collab-ed on it. I got back to Canada, headed over to Ranec’s home studio and smashed it all out in a few hours. The whole thing flowed beginning to end. I just love working with DJ’s man, they’re some of the most talented people out there and they know what people want to hear. I’m always looking to collaborate with DJ’s and different producers on tracks and I love writing for other people as well. Right now, I have a few projects on the go, nothing I can really talk about yet, but you can follow my Facebook page and my Instagram to stay in the loop.
Growing up who were your biggest influences and does their body of work still stick with you today?
I don’t know. That’s actually a hard question…I do look up to artists but I feel like the way they influence my music is different from what you may think. Usually when I draw inspiration from someone else’s work there will be an element of their song that really resonates with me. Whether it’s a guitar lick, or a 2 bar melody, a base line, a lyric -something! I will hold onto that one moment and live in how it makes me feel, then from that feeling comes a song. It’s kind of crazy but I rarely go “oh I want to make a song that sounds like this,” they just come as they come.
Your single ‘Sign’ sounds like it was made to overcome adversity, can you tell us what it means to you?
I wrote that song while I was living in London with my ex-ex girlfriend -haha, oh dear. Uhm, I was having a really hard time living there. I had just come back from my second contract with Norwegian and I was super depressed. My hair was falling out, I was 20 pounds over weight… and I had just felt like I trapped between a rock and a hard place. At the time my father was diagnosed with ALS, I didn’t want to leave on another contract, I wasn’t sure if anything would ever come of pursuing my music career and I was struggling daily with self-esteem issues which were holding me back from even being in public -I just felt lost. I didn’t trust myself [at the time] to make hard decisions concerning my life and I was so afraid of making the wrong one. That’s pretty much what that song is about.
On YouTube, you tend to have a few live sessions – are you planning on consistently releasing those types of videos?
Not really. Well, I will be releasing more of those types of videos -yes. But not consistently. My focus is primarily on playing live, recording music and connecting with people that way. My YouTube channel is kind of like a dumping ground for projects I’ve finished or content I’m working on. The best place to get updates is my Instagram or my Facebook page though… or my website which will be up later this year. Definitely stay tuned to get the jump on all upcoming shows and releases.