Brief info

Samsara is comprised of local New Yorkers from Queens and Long Island:
Dylan Trif (Lead Vocals), Charlie LoMonaco (Guitar and BackGround Vocals), John Devito ( Bass), Ben Bustamante (Drums and Background Vocals), Brendan Sandhovel ( Bass, Rhythm Guitar.)
Charlie, Ben and John began playing music together at an early age through a local music school. Years later they connected with Dylan and Brendan and formed what is now SAMSARA.
Growing up on all things music, SAMSARA. draws influence from several styles including, grunge, funk, metal and alternative.
Having years of experience in performance and training, the teens of SAMSARA. write their own music. They impress both the young and older crowds and have gained respect from the music community. Their songs are current and fresh, but you can hear their influences woven in their songs.
Their debut single, “NEVERMIND” was released in December 2020 and is available to stream wherever you listen to your music. along with SAMSARA’s EP, “PARALYZED IN PARADISE” which dropped this past January. It is also available on all streaming sites.

Interview With Samsara


Have you always been interested in music? What is your story and how did you start making music? 
Charlie (guitar) :  I have always been interested in music, ever since I was a kid. My parents would show me their taste in music and I would soak it in, along with forming my own tastes later on. My mom showed me punk and alternative rock, and my dad showed metal and rap. I began making music when I started playing guitar with a true passion when I was 10. I actually started playing on a piano we had at home on my own when I was much younger, writing songs and playing from ear, and then migrated to guitar at about 10 years old.  I  have been writing songs since I figured out I could, and still have the tablature I wrote out of my first song. (It’s really bad.) 
Ben (Drums) : -I grew up with music constantly playing in my house.  My dad would have me sing while he played guitar at 3 years old.  When I was 7 I asked to take drum lessons and I fell in love with it from there and I’ve just kinda grabbed onto other instruments like guitar, bass, keys
John (bass) :  I have been interesting in music since elementary school. I always liked music, but I didn’t start the laying an instrument until I was about 8. I played upright bass in the school orchestra and I started playing bass guitar a year later. I didn’t start making my own music until I was a little bit older.
Brendan (Guitar) : As a child, I never showed an interest in even listening to music, so becoming a musician was not something that me or my family/friends considered likely to happen.  However, after years of hearing my father jam out on the guitar in the basement, I was inspired to attempt to pick up the instrument so that I can do the same eventually.  At age 10 I had made my first attempt, but it didn’t stick at the time because I was not actively searching for new songs to challenge myself with.  It wasn’t until I made a second attempt to pick up the instrument at age 13 that I got the wheels rolling, due to a newfound drive to expand my musical library for both listening and playing on guitar.  Once I became skilled enough to be able to learn and play all of my favorite songs, I decided that it was time to take it to the next level and begin playing with other musicians.  My first step towards this next level of musicianship was at a local music school in Long Island called “School Of Rock Roslyn”.  At this school, which I am still a part of to this day, I learned the art/dynamic of playing as a member of a band, and even got to start performing on stage.  Many people mistake playing their instrument alone at home ,along with a record, to be the same as playing live with a band, but they couldn’t be more different.  The School Of Rock taught me about this difference, and also taught me to master the art of playing as a part of a band on stage.  At this school is also where I met Dylan, Charlie, Ben, and John, who I would later join Samara with.  Playing with Samsara helped me become more familiar with the side of music that relates to writing, performing, recording, and releasing  original songs.  Now, even despite the setback of COVID-19, we have an EP released on all streaming services, with new material on the way and plenty of shows on the horizon before I leave for college in the fall.
What are you  working on now? Any future releases we can look forward to? 
Brendan (Guitar) : We are in the final stages of recording our new single, which is expected to be released within the next month.  Unlike our prior releases, this track will be recorded and mixed completely by us, without the assistance of a studio. 
Ben (drums) : We have a bunch of songs written waiting on the side.  Hope to get them recorded soon
John (bass) :  We are working on finishing up a song, and we hope to get it out very soon
Dylan (Lead Vocals) : we have a few songs in our back pocket. We have something cooking up and should be released sometime this year.
Charlie (guitar) :  I am currently working on my band’s future releases. We are currently in the process of recording an upcoming single and are currently just working on recording the vocals.
What Is Your Ultimate Goal In The Music Industry? 
Charlie (Guitar):  My main goal would be to be able to do what I love, and just do what I love for the rest of my life, and honestly nothing else. I love music, and I am and will continue putting 1000% of my energy into making music, witing music, performing.
Ben (drums): I mean the goal of every band is to get a record deal and get booked for a big tour, and play MSG, so yeah that’s the ultimate goal
John (Bass) :  My ultimate goal is to make a career out of being a touring musician. It’s my dream to tour in a rock band as my career.
Dylan (lead Vocals) : What everyone’s goal. become rich and famous and forget everyone in your life haha. all jokes aside though my goals within the music industry is to be able to make a living from making music.
Brendan (Guitar) : My ultimate, all-time goal in the music industry is to continue to release as many songs, play as many gigs, and gather as many streams as possible for Samsara.
What Has Been The Biggest Challenge In Your Career Thus Far? 
Dylan (Lead Vocals) : I would say for me the biggest challenge is always trying to think of new ideas for songs or lyrics cause sometimes they come easy and sometimes it takes months just to finish a song
Ben (drums) : Covid has been a challenge, but also was good in the sense that I had a lot of time to write music and figure stuff out
Charlie (guitar) :  The biggest challenge in my career so far has been COVID-19 and being able to make music in a pandemic. Everything is different, and it is really hard to navigate, especially now that I am studying in college in another city and not being able to work with my friends (SAMSARA) face to face
John (bass) : I think the biggest challenge in my career so far has been getting music out for others to listen because it takes a lot of work and dedication. We spent hours perfecting our recordings.
Brendan (guitar) : The biggest challenge in my career thus far has been recording and releasing our most recent EP, “Paralyzed In Paradise”.  It was nearly a six month process full of a lot of disagreements, arguments, and long stretches of nonstop work, but it definitely proved to be worth it in the end.
How do you go about writing a song? Do you have a melody in your head and then write the other music for it or what’s Your typical songwriting process? 
Brendan (guitar) : The process we have used to write our songs doesn’t necessarily have a formula.  I find that using a formula makes all of your songs come out sounding the same, which we strive to steer away from in order for all of our songs to stay unique.  However, most songs begin with a melody in my head, or a cool riff/chord progression that I come up with on the guitar/bass which I will record into Logic Pro X and bring to the band so that everyone can include their input.
Charlie (guitar):  Honestly, my songwriting process is constantly changing and evolving.  It is something that just happens. Sometimes it starts with a bassline, sometimes a guitar, keys even, sometimes a melody in my head for a vocal, and even drums. I do write all my music by recording it on the spot and lately I have then been using Logic Pro X as a tool, and to also get better at production. I then share with everyone else and sometimes we build off it.
Ben (drums) :  A melody usually just happens when I’m playing my guitar.  Most of the time I’m not even trying, but just start messing around and then I’m like whoa, this sounds good.  And then I build it from there. 
John (bass) : Typically I play around with riff ideas and try to build off of that. Sometimes we’ll bring ideas to rehearsal and try to turn them into songs
Dylan (Lead Vocals) :  if i write the instrumentals as i’m writing it i try to think of catchy hooks while playing and as soon as i do that i try to think of things that reminds me of the song and write lyrics from there
How do you feel the Internet has impacted the music business? 
Dylan (Lead Vocals) the internet has helped the music industry so much, so many bands have blown up from tiktok or instagram. Even before all these apps justin bieber was found on youtube. the music industry definitely wouldn’t be where it is right now if not for the internet
Brendan (guitar) : The internet has definitely changed the entire dynamic of the music business in ways that are both beneficial and harmful to us musicians.  Instant communication, social media, and streaming services have made aspects such as promotion, connecting with other bands, finding gigs, and getting people to hear your music much easier.  On the other hand, things such as making a profit off of released music is made extremely difficult due to the recently rising popularity of streaming services (which pay significantly less than the sales of physical records).
John (bass) : The internet has certainly impacted the music business. We constantly use the internet to get our name out and to communicate with others trying to help us get further in our careers.
Charlie (Guitar):  I do not know this topic that well, but in my eyes, the internet has pros and cons when it comes to music. The pros being that everyone has a chance of making it through the internet, and anything and anyone can go viral thanks to an algorithm which I believe is a beautiful thing. The downsides can be bad though also, as the internet makes it harder to make money through sales, as the money that comes through streams are not nearly enough for most musicians to make a living off of alone. The interaction is virtual so you lose out on performing. 
Ben (drums) :  Well, it’s easier to be heard and to reach people.  And it’s great that you can have real interaction with your fans in real time.
List some famous musicians currently on your playlist? 
John (bass) : Emperor, Sabaton, Cannibal Corpse, Darkthrone, and a whole lot of other metal bands.
Ben (drums) :  Foo Fighters, Thundercat, Steve Lacy, Soundgarden, Mac Miller, Radiohead, Incubus, Royal Blood, RHCP, Sam Fender, Harry Styles
Dylan (Lead Vocals) :  Catfish and the Bottlemen, Kanye West, Inhaler, King Krule, C A N D I D!, Harry Styles, The Notorious B.I.G, Tom Misch,Oasis, Pop Smoke, i listen to a very wide spread of music lol
Brendan (guitar) : Some famous musicians currently on my playlist are Arctic Monkeys, The Smiths, Kendrick Lamar, Coldplay, George Michael, The Talking Heads, Metallica, Green Day (specifically their early work), and J. Cole.
Charlie (guitar) :  Recently, I have been a fan of musicians and artists such Archy Marshall with King Krule and his solo project(s), Radiohead, IDLES, and Car Seat Headrest. (there are many more too but when it comes to rock or alternative rock that has been what I have been listening to)
What Did You Do Before You Started Making Music? 
Dylan (Lead Vocals) : I mean not much. I’ve been playing music since i was 8 but before music I played soccer and still play to this day so I guess soccer lol
Charlie (guitar):  VIdeogames and hockey, which I quit once I began to play guitar.
John (bass) :  Before I started making my own music, I played at a music school, playing covers of famous rock songs
Brendan (guitar): Before I started making music, I was playing along on the guitar with my records in order to get better at my instrument.  I also began performing cover songs live with a local music school (that I am still a part of to this day) before I started writing  songs for Samsara.
Would you have any advice  for young people wanting to follow in your footsteps? 
Brendan (guitar) : I would advise any young musicians to start writing as soon as possible. You don’t need to be a master of your instrument to write a good song, because usually the best songs are the most simple ones (take Elevation by U2 as an example).  Also, you should not wait until you are in a full band before you start to write music, because anything you write can always be used later on down the road, no matter when you write it.
Charlie  (guitar) :  I’m young too, so maybe talk to someone else… But I would say work hard and do what you love and make only what you love. People can see through the fakes, be 100% yourself.  Never give up, practice and perform,and just keep playing.  Be open to all genres. 
Ben (drums) : Keep practicing, keep playing.  And listen to all kinds of music.
John (bass) : My advice for people starting a band would be to try and find their own sound, that’s what gets people interested.
Dylan (Lead Vocals) :  It’s a lot of work but if it’s genuinely what you like to do then do it but don’t half-ass it if you really love it put your whole heart into it.
If you could change anything about the music industry, what would it be? 
Charlie (guitar):  I do not have a true answer on this, but I do wish it were easier for smaller artists to gain recognition. Although nothing is impossible, it is really difficult to make it and I wish it were easier. That’s about it and it’s kind of not really an issue at all, it’s just the only thing I can think of off of the top of my head at this moment. I can definitely see my answer change on this as I learn more about the industry.
Ben (drums):  I wish the focus wouldn’t be so much about rap music right now.
Dylan (lead Vocals) :  Im not to invested in the music industry so i can’t particularly tell you what i would wanna change but if i had to choose something it would be to give younger band like us more of a chance
Brendan (guitar): I wouldn’t change anything about the music industry even if I could.
How do you feel about originality? 
Dylan (Lead Vocals) : music has been around for hundreds and hundreds  of years and there’s only so many  notes you can play so what ever you make its gonna be compared to something so i think a big thing is making it your own by putting your own touch on it whether it be the way you are strumming or the tone you have just make it your own and own it .
Brendan (guitar):  Originality is undoubtedly one of the most important things to have as a musician.  While it is important to draw from your influences, your touch of originality to your art is something that only you can bring to the table, and no one else can replicate authentically.  At the end of the day, one’s originality and creativity is what makes their music unique and stand out.
Ben (drums) :  I think it’s cool.  Cause you’re not trying to copy anything or anyone else
John (bass)  :  I feel that originality is extremely important when it comes to writing music. Having your own sound that separates your band from others, makes your music more memorable and unique
Charlie (guitar):  As I mentioned earlier, I truly believe that originality, or more specifically, making what you want to make, is the most important thing you can do. I feel as though making what you are passionate about making will result in the creation of truly meaningful music. Not that that cannot come from not making what you want, but that’s just how I make music personally and I know many other musicians feel the same way. If you don’t love it 100% then what’s the point?
Is there anything else we should know about you? or Something that you would like to add?