It all began in the fall of 2011 when two music students at Steveston-London secondary collaborated on a class project.
Since then, Paco Lee and Malcolm Lee have reached out to other former classmates to form the band Dot Mp3, which hosted a listening party on Sept. 27 to celebrate the release of its first EP, Good for You.
“It’s pretty exciting because we don’t have a lot of songs out right now, and so to release seven songs at once is pretty crazy,” said Paco Lee, the band’s producer.
In addition to Lee, the band includes Malcolm Lee (vocalist), Joseph Gallant (vocalist), Sherman Chong (visual artist) and Deion Adaza (music video director). Dot Mp3, which officially debuted in winter 2018, has released songs on SoundCloud and, more recently, Spotify.
Each of the band members connected over their shared musical influences, said Lee. Those influences include Frank Ocean, Kanye West, Chance the Rapper, Radio Head and the Arctic Monkeys, all of whom have helped shape the band’s sound, which Lee described as a mixture of hip hop, R&B and indie rock.
The band also credits their music production teacher at Steveston-London, Michael Mikulin, for helping them get started and introducing them to music production.
Good for You, said Lee, tells the story of a “suburban kid” from Richmond — what it’s like to grow up in Richmond and daily life in the city.
“We really took the time to write everything. We took the whole summer to make the instrumentals and write the songs,” adding that the EP’s songs are of a much higher caliber than the band’s previous releases.
For the release party at the Ukrainian Community Society of Ivan Franco the band created a series of visuals to go along with each of the EP’s tracks, such as hand-drawn animations, shots of the band playing and a music video.
“We wanted it to be like a movie experience where people watched the movie while listening to the EP,” explained Lee.
And the turnout, said Lee, was “unreal,” with over 100 people showing up to hear the band’s new songs — a number that Dot Mp3 didn’t expect.
People cheered and clapped throughout the listening party, and sang along to the band’s previously-released singles, even though the songs had only come out a few weeks prior, said Lee.
“It was really an unforgettable night for all of us,” said Lee.
Dot Mp3’s music, including their new EP, is available on Spotify.