Called to Rock!
By Tim Wee
August 22, 2013
People generally choose to become musicians, but few are ever called. When Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart struck his first piano keys at three, he probably knew that he had found his calling. In a similar vein, the same can be said for local musician Charlie Lim when he first laid his six year old fingers on the piano.
Describing music as a huge part of his life, Charlie added to his early music exposure by joining his church choir. His passion did not run dry even as he left Singapore at the age of 14 for Melbourne. In Australia, he persisted and topped the Victoria state A Levels examination for music performance.
Photos sourced from mypersonalrecount.blogspot.sg and theurbanwire.com
Returning to Singapore for his National Service, Charlie was recognised for his musical talent and drafted into the Singapore Armed Forces Music & Drama Company. Subsequently, he released his 4 track debut EP to much acclaim and accolades.
Taking on vocal and guitar duties, Charlie’s brand of rock, soul and blues is one that is best described as lush delicacy and soulful nuance. Citing American artist Jeff Buckley as a major influence, Charlie is astounded by Buckley’s uncanny approach of “never singing the same song twice while referencing everyone from Nina Simone to Led Zeppelin.”
Photos sourced from insing.com and mypersonalrecount.blogspot.sg
Refusing to be pegged to a definitive musical style, he is a perfectionist in the studio and on stage. Serving as the captain of his band, Charlie hopes that he and his motley crew are able to bring their audience on a journey of varying human emotions. He has graced the stage of major festivals such as the local Mosaic Music Festival, George Town Festival and Urbanscapes. In addition, Charlie has also played alongside such renowned names like Elbow, Kimbra, John Butler Trio, Sigur Ros and De La Soul.
Photos sourced from facebook.com
After graduating with a Bachelor in Music, he and his band embarked on their first international tour. Covering countries like Hong Kong, South Korea and Japan, Charlie and his band secured the distinction of being the first local musicians to receive a National Arts Council grant for an international tour.
Photos sourced from theurbanwire.com and facebook.com
However, there was no rock n’ roll glitz or glamour. In reality, Charlie admitted that they were “living on a shoestring budget.” But, the intangible rewards were more than enough for the boys. Not only did they have a blast, Charlie stated that “it was really refreshing to just meet people from a different world. They may not speak the same language as you…but it’s obvious that they enjoyed it and that’s a very encouraging thing.”
…“it was really refreshing to just meet people from a different world. They may not speak the same language as you…but it’s obvious that they enjoyed it and that’s a very encouraging thing.”…
Never one to rest on his laurels, Charlie is always hard at work whether be it sending letters to venue owners or exploring collaborative opportunities with other musicians. Armed with conviction, Charlie and gang are currently shaking things up by venturing out of their comfort zones. Besides attempting to pick up new instruments, they are even dabbling in sound production. Charlie professes that it is just another way to “keep the creative juices flowing and help us make the best music we can.”
As Charlie prepares to head out back on the road with his band again, it is commendable to see the fire in their bellies burn with such tenacity and dedication. Charlie’s commitment to music is so strong that you swear it comes to him as naturally as breathing. Perhaps, Singapore has found its very own Mozart when Charlie confesses that “At the end of it all, what keeps you going is just your love for the craft. You can’t really run away from it. It sounds completely clichéd but you don’t choose it, it chooses you.”
…“At the end of it all, what keeps you going is just your love for the craft. You can’t really run away from it. It sounds completely clichéd but you don’t choose it, it chooses you.”…
Don’t forget to check out Charlie Lim’s official site here!
You can also find him on his Facebook page here!
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