If his eclectic upbeat rhythms don’t automatically pull you in, Youngr’s striking ability to play every single instrument in each of his songs definitely will. Youngr is the newest project that Dario Darnell has been working on recently. From being an accomplished basketball player at 14 to completing law school and working at a bank, Darnell immediately makes his multifaceted talents apparent.
He first made his mark in the music industry with his one-take live performance videos on YouTube where a skilled camera man would film his performances by walking around him and capturing every angle. The moment he would go from using a soundboard to expertly drumming or jamming on his bass guitar immediately grabbed his viewers’ attention. While some may attribute his musical abilities to his father being Kid Creole, his past endeavors have made it quite obvious that he is both a hard worker and is exceptional at any skill he decides to master.
WSN: How did you get started? And tell us about what you’ve done since then.
Youngr: I got started with music about four or five years ago because I worked in a bank for a long time. I studied law in school and then I was like, “No!” and I had a midlife crisis and I started playing drums and writing songs and then started writing music and did this whole video and the rest is history and I love it. Music’s always been a hobby, but my mum was always, like, “get a proper job and do these things” and I was like, “you know what, Mum? No way! I’m doing music now.”
WSN: What was your biggest inspiration in choosing music? Was there anything external that influenced you?
Youngr: The sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll.
WSN: So you’re a huge Rock fan?
Youngr: I love Rock, yeah.
WSN: Who’s your favorite band?
Youngr: Incubus is probably my favorite band. The Red Hot Chili Peppers are up there; I actually covered one of their songs in my set. With Rock, it’s the lifestyle. It’s a fun thing, flying around and doing my thing — playing music in front of people is incredible.
WSN: How do you feel being here in New York?
Youngr: I love it, New York’s amazing. My dad was born in the Bronx — I’m half American and half English. The Meadows is cool. I have not been here before, [but] the setup is amazing. I just love being here.
WSN: In terms of where your music is going, what’s your goal/how close are you to reaching it?
Youngr: I don’t like to set goals. I don’t like to feel like I’ve reached a point with music. You wake up in the morning and you’re like, “I’m gonna try this” or “I’m going to do this.” And you just keep going. No goals, I just like to take each day as it comes. I like to let my manager take care of the goals.
WSN: Do you write your own music?
Youngr: Yes, I write, I produce, I co-write with a lot of people who’ve got amazing lyricists and stuff and I like to keep my options open because I think collaboration is where the magic happens. I like to lock myself away in my studio and produce it all.
WSN: Where do you like to write?
Youngr: I take inspiration from anywhere I ago, like all the gigs I do when traveling and all the crazy things I do. If you go through my voice notes on my phone, there are some crazy titles like “F-cked Up On A Wednesday” or something like that.
WSN: What is success for you?
Youngr: I think a big thing for me is to be producing other people’s albums. I love producing. I guess where I see myself going is having an amazing studio and producing amazing artists and bands and making great records.
WSN: Do you like producing better than performing?
Youngr: No, I love both. I think they go hand in hand, without one I couldn’t do the other. They go together for me. I think with bands I produce I’d tell them that I could only do their album if I could play the drums.
WSN: What’s your primary instrument?
Youngr: Drums, I love drums. And then piano and bass guitar. I love live instruments and I just love making dance music so it’s good to keep live music alive.
WSN: What can you tell us about future music or albums?
Youngr: There’s a song coming up called “What’s Next.” That’s the next single, but there are no plans for an album yet.
WSN: What would you say is your favorite thing to do besides music?
Youngr: Badminton! I love it. And if it’s not badminton it’s table tennis.
WSN: So, you like sports?
Youngr: Yeah, I used to play basketball for England when I was 14.
WSN: So you went from basketball to law to music?
Youngr: Yeah, it’s been a crazy life.
Email Dyanna Fleites-Cruz at [email protected]