Andrew Thomases encapsulates the nuance of the American man. A quick Google search of his name brings up his professional side; he is a technology and media/telecommunications litigation attorney for Ropes & Gray LLP. Based in Silicon Valley, CA, Thomases is at the front door of the tech industry, having represented big names in court, such as the well-known company, Roku. With 27 years of experience under his belt, he is the guy to go to if your technological, intellectual property is being breached.
Lik many other Americans, though, the everlasting scramble to keep up this capitalistic power structure has taken its toll on Thomases. 27 years, nearly half his life, is a long time to dedicate to a profession that, as Thomases describes it, is beyond demanding. With nearly 80 hour work weeks, as well as clients and associates buzzing you at all times of the day, right up until the moment he closes his eyes, it seems as though the “work” in the “work-life” balance has the upper edge. Thomases saves the day when your intellectual property is being infringed upon, but who saves him when his life is facing the same issue?
It turns out the hero he needed, was himself. Faced with the overwhelming pandemic a couple of years ago, on top of a life that already was asking for a lot from him, Thomases turned to a dear old friend: music. With the mastery of the bass guitar already equipped, Thomases stepped out of his comfort zone to learn a few more skills before sharing his feelings with the entire world.
When his vibrations reached myself, I first saw the more creative side of Thomases. At the top of his website, he describes his sound as “Alternative Rock with meaning.” The song that brought me there certainly fits the bill. On April 8, Thomases debuted his sixth single on SoundCloud, “Exploring,” also featuring a lyric-video.
“Exploring,” was is said to “reflect Thomases’ own story of combating burnout and how experimenting musically and developing his career as a solo artist has allowed him to rediscover the thrilling sense of adventure that makes life worth living.” The subtle irony of the fact that he is singing a song about tackling stress, as a way of tackling his own stress, is one of the hidden gems of life itself. That said, Thomases is sincere in his approach, and without a doubt is echoing feelings that thousands, if not millions, of people across the country are feeling.
“Stagnant water kills. Rapid water thrills,” Thomases sings, which is not only a slight nod to his own tactics at escaping the rut of every day life, but the perfect metaphor for how, if we never decide to shake up our own lives, we will be doomed to a life of work and misery.
As the signs of burnout are beginning to appear around the edges of my own existence, I took “Exploring” as a wake-up call. The lyrics really resonate with me, and I feel as though many other people I know may benefit from listening to Thomases. In addition, I thought it was only right to speak with the man who took the time to change his own fate, as well as send out a beacon to the rest of us, that we might be able to “chase our [own] lodestar.”
On a fairly nice day in both Silicon Valley, CA, and here in Brooklyn, NY, Thomases and myself briefly chatted about “Exploring,” amongst a few other things, including his beginnings as a cover artist. For your own enlightenment, watch the full interview below (I’m lying, part of it was missed in the recording — I am so, so sorry!)
- 0:30 – Early childhood music inspirations
- 1:49 – Getting acquainted with the bass guitar
- 4:13 – Time as a bass player in cover bands
- 5:57 – The daily life as a litigation attorney
- 8:12 – What burnout looked like for Thomases in particular
- 9:10 – Activities from his past that brought him excitement then
- 10:30 – Bringing that excitement to the present by making original songs
- 11:33 – Other new activities contributing to Thomases’ fight against burnout
- 13:41 – Performing his music live
- 15:40 – Help with mixing his songs
- 16:58 – The direction of his upcoming single
- 18:20 – Collaborative effort on his new music + the song’s message
- 20:05 – Possibility of an album
- 21:15 – Final comments
If you’re a first time listener of Andrew Thomases’, like myself, you should take a trip to his website to check out his earlier singles and their accompanying lyric videos (or just watch them on his YouTube channel). Each of his songs are conscious, as Thomases sifts through his own emotions while simultaneously keeping his followers entertained. Feel free to follow him on his socials (featured on his site) for news on more music that is sure to come from the attorney-by-day, rockstar by night.