Updated: Sep 13, 2020
The first time that I met Zaq Squares was at a tiny underground venue in the gothic quarter called Craft. It’s an intimate little venue with low ceilings and absolutely zero cell phone reception. It was rather remarkable because Zaq is even taller than I am, which is kind of rare. I mean this is a really big man. The kind of guy that has to bend over a bit when leaving a room so that he doesn’t knock his head on the door frame. So when he got up onstage to perform, I was even more surprised by the emotion in his voice and the high notes that he had no trouble hitting. The songs that he played were all original. Tales of love and loss and what it is like to grow up in a small town where you realize at a young age that you are different than all of your neighbors.
As I sat in the underground cavern listening to Zaq’s tunes, I found that I had a very hard time categorizing exactly what style it was. Everything was just a little different, with interesting bridges and chord progressions. I actually sat through his entire set, without going for a smoke break, which is something that I usually do.
I have seen a lot of artists perform at various venues across the city and there is some fantastic talent out there. But Zaq really offered something special. I’m wasn’t sure if it was simply the fascination of seeing a six and a half foot tall (that’s 198 cm for you metric people) guy belting out tunes with such emotion, or the lyrical content that painted a clear picture of what had been on his mind at the time of writing, but what ever it was I was pretty impressed.
When I saw him play for the second time, I was really hoping that the first set that I witnessed was not just a ‘good night’, but that he was always good. I was happy to see and hear that the tunes and vocals were of equal quality of the first encounter.
I have since gotten to know him on a more personal level. He is kind and gentle and rather soft spoken for a guy his size. But he is also driven to succeed in what ever venture that he embarks on, and that includes his music. He is open to collaboration with other artists and I look forward to what that might bring. Check out his brand new night partnered with Michel Mad Club Barcelona on 11th April 2019. Paloma Madre video below.
Ed. Note: Pan snuck into every concert from Led Zeppelin and the Rolling Stones to Frampton and The Donnas. He was the Managing Editor of Reaktor Music Magazine some eons ago and had to go through stacks of CDs a mile high per sub-genre from having worked with Sony BMG, Warner Music and indie labels Mushroom Records and 3AM across Australasia, as well as watch many of them live. He's had a hard life.