Adrian “X” Eccleston is a seasoned live guitarist, writer, producer, and studio musician from Toronto. He’s toured the world with Drake and Kylie Minogue as their live guitarist, played live with Leona Lewis, Serena Ryder, The Weeknd, and many other artists, and appeared on shows like Jimmy Kimmel, Ellen, and the Late Show with David Letterman.
Before joining Drake on tour, Adrian X first began collaborating with him during the recording sessions of Drake’s multi-platinum album Thank Me Later. Adrian X continued on as Musical Director and studio collaborator for Drake’s album Take Care, which won Best Rap Album at the 2013 Grammy Awards. Now, after writing and producing music for over a decade, Adrian X released his debut album Soulgazer, a dreamy album filled with instrumentals and guitar melodies that are best described as an exploration into space.
1. How are you using the BOSS VE-20?
I am using my VE-20 in a multiple of ways for both live and studio music making. I have it in the studio for singing rough ideas quickly and getting the vibe right with a dope echo or verb. I also use it at shows. It’s a great little piece, especially when you have to set up quickly with no sound check. It’s great being able to control my own vocals FX.
2. How would you describe your first solo album Soulgazer?
Soulgazer is best described as a movie soundtrack. There are different genres on one album all fused together by my guitar layers and melodies.
3. What has been the craziest moment you experienced while touring with the numerous acts you have worked with?
Nothing ever got too crazy luckily. However there were random moments of nudity, police, bus accidents, and famous recording sessions in hotel rooms, as well as countless A-list celebrity sightings. Who am I kidding! There are tons of stories. All equally as crazy.
4. How did you land the guitarist gig for Drake?
His producer 40 is a good friend of mine. We work well together in the studio and have done so for years. He asked me if I wanted to do it. It’s a very small world sometimes.
5. What’s your favourite hang-out spot in Toronto?
If you like seeing great live music like I do, then you already hang out at The Orbit Room in Toronto. If you don’t already know about it, just go check it out one day and you will see what I mean.
6. Who were your early main influences?
I grew up listening to classic rock and Prince thanks to my big bro. Then I got into Public Enemy, and A Tribe Called Quest opened my mind to getting in to everything Hip-Hop.
7. Which accomplishment are you most proud of to date?
Being able to bring my parents to London to see me playing at The 02 Arena was by far my most proud moment. I was playing with Kylie Minogue and her tour were so cool to me. My parents came and hung out in London for a couple weeks.
8. What advice do you have for up-and-coming Canadian musicians?
The most solid advice I can give is to just be on time for everything. It goes a long way to be known as someone who is always on time. It’s such a small thing but a very hard skill to learn for us musicians. The rest are things that you have probably heard before. Just be a positive energy mainly!
9. Professionally, if you could go back in time and do anything differently, would you? And what would you do?
Yes, there is one thing that I would change. I give good advice to people so hit me up on Twitter.
10. What’s in store for 2015?
There is already so much on the go… the NAMM Show, the Grammy week shenanigans, studio sessions and lots of live shows. I have a bunch of videos being made with Liz Loughrey, my artist that I produce. It’s all music, all the time.
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