We had the good fortune of connecting with Conner Farrell and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Conner, what role has risk played in your life or career?
If it’s something you care about, it’s worth the risk. All things in life are risky. It’s just a game of how risky it is and is it worth it. As a general rule, I don’t compromise my values to gain something I think I want. If I do, it ultimately eats at me and ruins whatever I gained for doing such. Usually something much better that I couldn’t or wouldn’t have predicted occurs when I turn down said opportunity. Risk is necessary. Obviously I don’t go adding unnecessary risk to my life, but there’s certainly a healthy amount to maintain. If I don’t feel like I’m putting something on the line, then I’m not doing it right. Absence of risk is an indicator that I’m either not doing something meaningful or I’m not giving it the energy or dedication it requires. At the heart of it all, I’d rather fail a thousand times than never try. All I’ve ever risked is being embarrassed and being seen as a failure. But honestly I really don’t care. At the end of the day, I have to be able to sleep with myself at night knowing that I lived that day doing as I thought was right. I strive to live to my own standards, and so whatever I must risk to do that, I do. In general, I risk my ego, I risk my pride, but I never risk my sanity and my ability to sleep with myself at night.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I have a Rock Band called Black Licorice, we make raw high-energy music that hits you first on an animal level and then speaks to you on an intellectual level. Best put, intellectual sword fighting wrapped in a visceral onslaught of raw animal expression. This of course involves unconventional songwriting and arranging with raw passion, distorted guitars, horns, and electronic sounds. I started the band in September of 2019 with the goal of bringing back rock. Over the last ten years, I’ve watched the steady decline of rock in the world, and frankly, I’m not having it. Yes, there’s still people with guitars and drums and basses, but they’re not rocking. Rock is an ethos, an energy, it’s infectious and has the power to snap people out of their own mental prisons. Rock is an aggressively joyful approach to life, and that’s what seems to be missing from the world right now. I’ve got one goal. Bring Back Rock.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Check out Dirty Birds in PB, great wings, great people. The locations at UCSD and Liberty Station are great too. Visit the Dumpling Inn & Shanghai Saloon on Convoy for killer Chinese food. Also, hit Filippis Pizza Grotto Pacific Beach.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I wanna give my shoutout to Tyler Ward at School of Rock San Diego. Tyler taught me that by simply persevering you can achieve nearly anything. Getting given dozens of songs a year into playing guitar and being told that I only had a couple of weeks to learn them until we’d be playing them live regularly was a superkick in the ass. It showed me that I could do large amounts of growth in short periods of time purely due to sheer willpower. It is true what they say about pressure-making diamonds. Tyler gave me the conditions to realize my potential. I realized that I could learn and get really good at pretty much anything that’s physically possible if I saw it as something within my control instead of as an unwieldy unattainable future. Having the pressure and the deadlines made me make it happen. Because I had to get it done, it got done. I made it get done. That mindset towards work is priceless. I believe that finding your limits is important and Tyler helped push me past the limits and barriers I made for myself in my mind. So for that, I am thankful. Shoutout to Tyler Ward at School of Rock San Diego.
Other: TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@connerfarrell?lang=en
Una Smoole Emily Yamaguchi