Jon Singngam & Devon Farquharson of the Funky Dawgs!
Jon Singngam was born in Meriden CT and has been playing drums since he was 6 years old. Growing up he mostly played in programs through school which allowed him to be a part of regional and state symphonic and jazz ensembles. At Maloney High school in Meriden, he was first exposed to marching percussion and went on to march for the UConn Marching Band until graduation. He graduated from UConn in 2013 with a Bachelor's in Political Science with a minor in Sociology and his influences when it comes to drumming include Jason McGerr, Luke Holland, Benny Greb, Kyoshi Ijichi, Travis Barker, and so many others.
Devon Farquharson, Percussion, hails from Manchester, CT. Devon graduated from UConn with a bachelor's degree in Economics and a minor in Digital Arts. Devon was the section leader of the UConn drumline during his time in the UConn Marching Band, where he met the members of The Funky Dawgz Brass Band. Mr. Farquharson also enjoys doing video production and occasionally creates some content for the band as well.
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Check out the below interview with Jon and Devon!
Where in Connecticut did you guys grow up and what got you into playing the drums?
Jon: I grew up in Meriden CT and I got into playing drums because of a fluke incident when I was a kid and my dad ended up putting me intro drum lessons instead of guitar. I wish it was a moment of clarity type thing or I found my calling type of moment, but we just ended up checking the wrong box and I was a tinier kid so a guitar would have looked silly in my hands. Really glad the mistake happened though, I love playing the drums with my whole heart and in every show I want to share that passion with the people who watch, listen and connect with us.
Devon: I grew up in Hartford, CT. I started playing drums in 4th-grade band. The reason I chose drums was because I was inspired by the movie Drumline. Joining the marching band in high school got me more interested in marching percussion.
When playing with the Funky Dawgz, what is your writing process like and who are your influences?
Jon: We are influenced by the sounds of New Orleans and also wrinkles from other artists as well, when it comes to the traditional feel we look to the greats like the Rebirth Brass Band, the Dirty Dozen, The Soul Rebels, TBC, The Hot 8, and other bands from NOLA to influence our writing process. From that point we add our own little spices, let it simmer and what you get is a big old helping of the stew we have been brewing at all of our live shows. A lot of what we do is very primal, instinctive, and raw which is what I believe gives us our signature sound.
Devon: Some of my musical influences are Chris Dave (Drummer), Stanton Moore (Drummer), The Rebirth Brass Band.
What advice do you have to any upcoming drummer in CT?
Jon: Take it from us, people who really have been a part of an amazing thing such as sharing our passion for music, if you want to be great you cannot be someone who loves instant gratification. Fall in love with being a great musician but also fall in love with the grind and the process. You will have to lug your heavy equipment, someone will break your favorite cymbal and drop your brand new snare, and there will be days when your hands hurt so bad that if you do another rudiment exercise you will tear your face off. It is in those exact moments that if you choose to commit you will see the results, you might just play sold out shows at MSG, you might just travel to Spain and headline major festivals here in the US and around the world and you might be the next featured artist here in CT. You never know until you try so to sum it up, do everything you can and play as much as you can, lean on people who want to help you and never take anyone for granted. Treat the music and the instrument with respect and you will see your life and drumming go places you never thought possible.
Devon: Keep drumming.