Teens on Stage

Raaid Arshad: “I try to write from my heart.”

posted Dec 19, 2010, 7:30 PM by Joey Dussault   [ updated Dec 19, 2010, 7:47 PM ]

Between performing as a solo act, playing originals like “Rome” and “Of Hills and Woods”; as a singer of the
recently disbanded group Band of Brothers; and in Groton-Dunstable Regional High School’s acclaimed chamber chorus, Raaid Arshad (left) has been exciting the local music scene with his moving vocals and poignant songwriting. Arshad has progressed as an artist and made a name for himself faster than just about any act in the area – a perfect and irrefutably deserving subject for GD Music’s first article. Arshad’s music will satisfy any sweet tooth for pop sensibilities, but doesn’t sacrifice the grit that comes with genuinely honest songwriting. I had the pleasure of speaking with Arshad about performing, Disney music, and making Laney Coveno cry:


Joseph Dussault: What can you trace your interest in music back to?


Raaid Arshad: Well the first music I was ever exposed to was Pakistani music, though I didn't listen to it very much. The first album that I can properly recall owning and listening to is the Smash Mouth album with the songs "All Star" and "I'm a Believer" on it!

JD: What sort of things do you usually write songs about? Where does your inspiration come from?

RA: I generally write songs to let out emotions, so whenever I face an emotionally challenging experience or see something that stirs my soul, I feel inspired to write a song. For example, the obvious love song, or when my brother left for college, I wrote a song about that.

JD: What aspirations do you have as a musician and a performer?


RA: I'm a dreamer. I would love to perform for as many people as possible – to be on iTunes, to be an almost household name (though people would mispronounce it). I know it is unlikely for those to happen, but that is what drives me, apart from the fact that performing is one of my favorite things to do.

JD: What's your funniest/craziest music-related moment?


RA: My funniest music related moment was possibly singing at karaoke night last year with Francesca and Laney Coveno. I had planned to sing "A Whole New World" but so did they... it didn't turn out too well, though people found it entertaining.

JD: What song are you most proud of?

RA: The song I am most proud of is “Rome”. It made Laney cry and I got compliments from a lot of people. Additionally, it’s one of my only somewhat difficult and creative riffs.

JD: Which artists or people influence your music most?


RA: I don't have any one artist or person who influences my music the most. Generally, whatever song or group I'm into at the moment will influence my writing. Other than that, I try to write from my heart and just whatever sounds good to me. (I would've thought Blink-182 and such would influence me a lot, but barely any of my songs are like that.)

JD: What do you get out of writing songs?


RA: I get peace out of writing songs. It’s how I vent and let out my feelings. If people like the songs, I get satisfaction!

JD: In what ways have you progressed as a musician and a songwriter since you began playing music?


RA: I have improved at guitar a lot since I started, though I still have a ways to go. My voice range has improved. I think more abstractly when thinking of lyrics and it has spurred me to see beauty in things I wouldn't normally have thought of; for instance on an autumn day I just felt that it was so beautiful outside that I ended up coming up with lyrics for a song about it without even wanting to. I guess my mind has opened up a bit more.


    Arshad’s talent and potential as an artist will surely take him to new platforms, greater opportunities, and new accolades. Arshad performs regularly at local music events, so the only thing keeping you from good music is your willingness to listen. Bottom line: this crooner will turn you into a swooner. Sorry, I couldn’t resist. Joey out.

1-1 of 1