Josh Chan Performance at UCSB's Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall | Credit: Roarin 20s ( on Instagram)

For Hopeless Romantics Like Me is the apt title for the new, self-produced first album from singer, song-writer, producer, and UCSB pre-law student, Josh Chan (Jomch) ( Balancing school and music has been a battle for this young emerging local artist, but his dedication has resulted in over 50 live performances this past year, 150,000 live streams across Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud, and featured work in UCSB’s Daily Nexus and The Bottom Line. The album’s inspiration stems from all his life experiences thus far being a Filipino-American, student, and a romantic finding his voice as an artist. Chan aims to share with his listeners what he values most, love.

Your new album is called For Hopeless Romantics Like Me. What makes you a hopeless romantic, and how does this album relate to the other hopeless romantics out there? I define a hopeless romantic as someone who continues to believe in love, regardless of the struggles they might have experienced.

This album is largely focused on my personal experiences with romantic love, and I think this album can definitely relate to people and their own experiences. I spoke my truth to the best of my abilities, and even if someone hasn’t lived through what I experienced, I think they can relate to the feelings, thoughts, and sounds that resonate with the ups and downs of a romantic relationship.

‘For Hopeless Romantics Like Me’ album cover | Credit: painted and designed by jomch (@jomch on Instagram)

What inspired you to pursue your journey as an artist? Before I shared my music publicly, I would only ever sing and play guitar to my family and very close friends. When I first moved into college, I met my four closest friends who also happened to make music; Kenneth Yang (imKENNETHY), Sandhi Upreti (sändy), Soren Call (søren) and Ethan Lee (howitends). They convinced me to record an original and release it online. I eventually did in January 2022, and that started everything for me. Without them, I don’t think I would have taken that leap.

How does your Filipino heritage shape you as a person and how does it influence your music? I am very proud of being Filipino, and part of the reason I am so motivated to pursue music at a high level is to represent positively for the community. I’ve always had a love for music, and something that helped nurture that is being a part of a culture that also values this art form. Nearly every Filipino party I would go to growing up would feature a Karaoke machine, where we would take turns singing classic love ballads, R&B, or the latest pop songs. I think this love of music is contagious, and it definitely influences my work.

How are you able to manage being a student and an artist? I see art as reflecting my own life and everything I care about. In that sense, I think that everything I do connects with each other. Whenever I have the time to write, produce, or perform, I make use of that opportunity.

When I think about my education, I think about the sacrifices and the endless hours of work my parents dedicated to sending my brother and I into university. Recognizing this opportunity, I don’t want to take it for granted. Being a pre-law student has opened up opportunities to contribute to the issues I care about most, such as mental health advocacy, housing rights, immigration, and the Asian American community.

What has your experience been like performing in Isla Vista and downtown Santa Barbara? One aspect about Isla Vista I love is how unique the different performances have been. I’ve done band shows in someone’s backyard, a performance at the park, open mics on campus at UCSB, in the IV Theater, or even on a balcony overlooking the ocean view.

Performing downtown is such a blast too. My friends and I have gotten the opportunity to perform regularly at Soul Bites restaurant, and I’ve also performed at the Baad Sunday Thrift event. I cherish those performances, as it pushed me out of my comfort zone and introduced my music to a new audience.

Is anything in the works for your next project? I’ve been so inspired lately and I have a lot I want to create, but I also want to treat my music career with the lens of sustainability and longevity. In that sense, I strive to improve in my craft consistently through practice and inspiration, and release songs that I wholeheartedly love. Being that my main source of writing is my real life experience, I want to live my life to the fullest, prioritize my wellbeing, and nurture my personal relationships.

‘For Hopeless Romantics Like Me’ Artist Bio | Credit: designed by @MGFX_Lab on Instagram


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