Nick Valentini plays piano for an on campus band called the Street Hearts. And he sat down with On the Hill for an in-studio interview where he talks about his music, his friends, and his celebrity crush. Check out the interview below:
OTH: So you played in both Spring Sing and Jazz Reggae. Do you have a favorite experience?
Nick: I liked both equally. I did Spring Sing as a soloist in my first year and that’s where I met Andrew, who’s also a member of the Street Hearts. And then we ran into each other again in middle of the year and decided to get together to write music. We auditioned as the Street Hearts for Spring Sing and I tried out as a soloist last year. I ended up getting in with the band. And then we met Sarah at Spring Sing and she joined in.
OTH: Did you win anything at Spring Sing?
Nick: Yeah, we won Fans Choice at Spring Sing and Best Band.
OTH: When did you start playing music?
Nick: I was like 6. My family is pretty musical so it just happened that way. I started with classical until my sophomore year of high school and then I switched to jazz. And then I started writing solo stuff.
OTH: Do you prefer playing solo or playing with your band?
Nick: The songs I write solo are way different. With the band I’m mainly keyboard so its completely different. The Street Hearts I’d say is mostly folk and the solo work I do is mostly pop and alternative.
OTH: Who do people often compare your musical style and voice to?
Nick: John Mayer, Jamie Cullen (He says nonchalantly).
OTH: Gavin Degraw?
Nick: Yeah, Gavin Degraw.
OTH: What’s a song you’ve been listening to that you’d be embarrassed for people to know about? Be honest. “We Can’t Stop” by Miley Cyrus?
Nick: I like that song.
OTH: Do you like Wrecking Ball? More importantly, have you seen the video?
Nick: The video is [sic] weird. Besides the fact that she’s like licking a hammer. I can tolerate it though…
OTH: Rihanna, Beyonce, or Nicki Minaj?
Nick: Like musically or…? (With a mischievous look)
Nick: Beyonce for both actually.
OTH: What do you do in your free time besides music?
Nick: I like to play soccer.
OTH: Are you on the club team?
Nick: I don’t play club but I was going to try.
OTH: Boxers or briefs?
Nick: Briefs definitely.
OTH: Who is your celebrity crush?
Nick: The first one that came to mind was Katy Perry.
OTH: What is your favorite memory from when you lived on the hill?
Nick: My two roommates. We all knew each other from high school. We weren’t really close friends but we did a lot of cool things together. I stayed in Cedar (De Neve). All the cool kids come from Cedar.
OTH: What was your favorite dining hall and food?
Nick: I’d probably go with the pizza. I like the pizza at De Neve best.
OTH: The Street Hearts are playing at the Roxy on Sunset soon, right?
Nick: Yeah, check out our Facebook page to get more info.
Here’s a personal message from the Street Hearts:
“We’re performing for the first time in LA (that’s not at UCLA)! Come join us @ The Roxy Theatre in West Hollywood on October 11th @ 7:15 PM! Bussing will be provided to the event and back from UCLA. Further information regarding the buses to follow. You can buy tickets online at http://www.theroxy.com/event/363507”
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Interview by Beverly Okhio