Drew Cole (California Ghosts)

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I love that there’s always a unique story when I am introduced to new artists. I suppose it comes with the territory of building up the walls in a community and then breaking through them with the noise we discover along the path; we get to rebuild with new people, music, and styles. In a matter of a week my path crossed with a musician several times, incidentally; I was reaffirmed that there are no such things as coincidences.

I just moved back out to The City of Angels and met up with close friend and Setlist Featured Artist, Dylan Hartigan (In the Hart of Brooklyn).  He introduced me to a friend of his whom was also a singer/songwriter, among others. It was almost a meeting in passing, but one I remembered.

The next day I got a phone call from Setlist Co-Founder Jake Flynn saying that I “had to check out this artist as soon as possible”, which I did of course and recognized the name. It wasn’t until a late night out watching Setlist Featured Artists, Foxes and Lions perform live at the Hotel Café that I turned around and saw the same guy I was introduced to by Dylan, the artist Jake told me to check out and a friend of Haider Mir of Foxes and Lions, all wrapped into one; Drew Cole.

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I was able to see Drew perform live at The Lucky Strike in Hollywood a few weeks after we officially met, I couldn’t wait to hear him let loose live. I was listening to his singles on Spotify up until I went to his show and, as most of us know, it’s always a big fuckin’ cherry on top when the artist is better live. Don’t get me wrong, Drew is exceptionally talented and sounds great on his recordings, but a lot of the times when musicians record an EP they sound different than themselves; that’s not the case with Drew. When he started in on the chords for California Ghosts, I was engulfed in the depth I got to experience that Drew brought out with just himself and his guitar; which wasn’t necessarily the case over my little car stereo. He made to crowd comfortable by talking among friends and fans before the show just before he took an Instagram Story of him doing his signature “sound check” getting everyone involved, you’ll have to go to his show to experience this, I’ll save you that treat.

California Ghosts is a story of haunted wonder. It goes well with one of my own life quotes “You can wonder your life, or you can wander it.” It tells a story of how one person is stirred by the passion of their aspirations and feeling that something out there, needs to be fulfilled by them. If you don’t act on that impulsive feeling in life, you’ll be haunted by the Ghosts in result. I think Drew titled this song PERFECTLY. It has a nice juxtaposition to the state where dreams are chased; you can fly among The City of Angels or stay haunted by the California Ghosts. It’s up to you, what will you act on? What’s bothering you or stirring you up? You can’t let what's comfortable hold you back from what you’re destined for, invite fear.

“Forget about a hometown so familiar. Lock it in a box, too much of it will kill ya.”

– Drew Cole California Ghosts

You can follow Drew's  success on Season 14 of NBC's The Voice where he is a big contributor to Adam Levine's team after both he and Blake Shelton fought for him during his Blind Audition.


Landon Tavernier