Date: August 18, 2007
Las Vegas City Life

A year of unmagical thinking: L.A. singer-songwriter Sacha Sacket got drop kicked by karma and came out grinning
by Jeff Inman

The plan was perfect. It had to be. Sacha Sacket's career was riding on it. The L.A. singer-songwriter had released two albums, spent a few years on the road, built up a solid following playing everything from smoky clubs to gay pride parades. If he was to keep the whole thing going, he had to churn out a disc in a couple months -- namely over the summer of 2006 -- and then be back on the road in the fall. He already had a hole in his schedule. He'd booked the studio time. Had a producer. All he needed to do was write and record the disc. It was going to be easy.

"It turned out to be the impossible task," Sacket says, now, a year later. "It was [one of] the most frustrating times in my life."

Simply because karma was doing everything it could to screw with the plan. When Sacket got in the studio, things started to go wrong from the start. The songs weren't coming. He and his producer clashed. Nothing was going right. "It lead to some serious burnout," he says. "Eventually I had to decide to take the record away and give it to someone else."

In fact, two other people. Sacket racketed up a total of three producers on Lovers and Leaders. "I had ot do what was best for the record and trust myself to actually do it," he says.

It didn't help he had decided to make two monumental shifts in protocol. Prior to Lovers and Leaders, Sacket had generally flown solo -- the gentle balladeer who could massage myriad emotions out of merely a piano and his sweeet voice. But with this record he wanted a full band sound. "I got bored with the piano thing," he says bluntly. "I wanted a new challenge." Which, considering full arrangements are more complex to both record andget right, he got.

The other problem: He fell in love, which for most people isn't a problem. For Sacet, it meant he had to rethink what he was doing. He couldn't -- and didn't want to -- leave on a whim anymore. Someone else had power over him. It was disconcerting. So much so, Sackeet started writing songs about it, creating intricate characters generally awful at either being, not surprisingly, a lover or a leader, hoping to uncover which side he fell on.

"I had this huge choice," he says. "I felt like I had to decide whether I gave into the love in my life or go with what I hoped would be the huge power of my career. I really struggled with both. So do the characters on the record; they're me trying to decide which side to give into."

With Lovers and Leaders finally coming out, a year past Sacket's original schedule, he's not prone to giving away the end of his story at the moment -- though he is hitting the road for an extended run. Regardless, karma seems to be done kicking Sacket's ass.

"I'm really hopeful right now," he says. "I'm letting go with this record a bit. I'm trying some new things. So far it's working out. At the moment, that's all I can ask for."

Sacha Sacket (with Broken Teeth and Sin City)
Thu., Aug. 16, 10 p.m.
The Bunkhouse
124 S. 11th St.

All original material © 2007-2010 Sacha Sacket Source. All other material property of their respective owners.