t may seem like Charles Ingalls is a young guy just starting out, but in reality he is blazing his own trail in the dark recesses of the underground electronic music industry by uniting soothing ambient melodies with gnarly basslines. If there is any artist that could have you meditating and head-banging in the same song it would probably be CharlestheFirst.
At the time of this interview he had just released his Roots EP. In order to understand the intricacy of CharlestheFirst, we dug deeper into his tranquil vibrations with a few questions. Here’s what the bass prodigy had to say.
Considering your age, did anyone oppose your decision to pursue music as a career?
I got some resistance from a few people for sure; that's inevitable though. Lots of people that I went to high school with will be like "oh you aren't going to college right now, that's interesting." Ultimately, I think it's smart for me to focus on this craft, because I know that when I do go back to school, I'll know exactly what I want to study. But I've been blessed to have a very supportive family and friend group on this journey, even when I was just starting out.
Growing up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, what is your relationship with nature and would you say it has an effect on your music, if so, how?
Nature is pretty much my biggest source of inspiration and peace, I would say it inspires almost all of my music. The Sierras are so damn beautiful and populated by people who share a collective love for their surroundings. I go out on lots of hikes and backcountry adventures, and I sample lots of nature sounds on my phone and such, so textures play a big part in my composition process.
Your music carries a lot of sentiment and feeling, how does it feel to be able to connect your listeners to a more relaxed, chill state?
It is a feeling that I'll never grow tired of. Warms my heart to see people connect and move to music that isn't just for turning up. Super thankful for the growing number of people who have an open mind musically and also just towards life.
What can you tell us about Elsewhere, is it gonna be different than Roots?
Elsewhere is starting to come together really nicely. It will have lots of ambient feels as well as some heavier stuff woven in. I'm gathering lots of recordings of my friends reciting my poems and stories to sprinkle in there, as well. It will be different than Roots, but no project is ever the same for me; I think it's a good next chapter and transition from that EP.