Hassan was introduced to music the way many people are; his parents enrolled
him in piano lessons when he was young. The difference between Hassan and most
people is that he didn’t stop there. He branched out into singing, began
writing his own songs, taught himself to compose, and started playing guitar in
high school. He shared his love of music with his peers by starting the A
Capella club at his school.
first experience with singing came through a musical in high school. The
playwright of the musical, Connor Riley, recognized Hassan’s talent and took a
special interest, working to prepare him for the school talent show. After
weeks of practice with Riley’s guidance, Hassan sang solo for the first time in
front of an audience. He remembers retreating awkwardly as the song came to an
end, only to hear the audience applaud.
thought they were going to boo me but in that moment I grasped the most
tangible feeling of acceptance of my life.”
fell in love with performing after that first show. He started a band his
freshman year: ‘Colonel Crunch & The Cereal Bowls’. Colonel Crunch played
local concerts that drew small groups of friends and families to backyards,
patios, and parks. During his time as front man of Colonel Crunch, Hassan
explored different musical styles. The band covered songs by old souls like
James Brown and Sam Cooke, indie-rock inspired Noah & The Whale, and modern
rock classics like The Black Keys.
2012 Hassan auditioned for The X-Factor USA. Simon Cowell, known as the
notoriously harsh judge and producer of American Idol and The X-Factor, was the
first to express how impressed he was. Pop music game changer Britney Spears
called his voice ‘bluesy and sexy’. After a summer of auditions that started in
Austin, moved to Miami and ended on a yacht, Hassan joined Playback. Cowell
formed the band with Hassan and four other X Factor contestants. Hassan
concluded his stint on the reality television program in the Top 24.
only two days of advertising, Playback’s first show not only sold out, but went
over capacity with nearly 500 people in attendance. What followed were four
months of sequential shows across America in Texas, New York, and California.
The band used its momentum from X Factor to record covers in California for
release after the show aired. The band broke up after their tour due to the
distance between the member’s homes.
returned home to find that Colonel Crunch had also dissipated in his time away.
With no band, he played solo shows, missing the band feel. Then he met Matt
Fowler. Fowler offered up his band to back Hassan at a show. Soon after, Fowler
and Hassan formed a band that took its name from one of Hassan’s dreams.
Are Moody’ established its soul-folk sound through a series of covers posted to
YouTube. WAM used songs on the Billboard Hot 100 to showcase its original take
on pop music. With the help of WAM’s large YouTube following, Hassan and Fowler
won a contest that took them to Nashville, Tennessee for their first live show.
The band toured throughout the summer and into the academic school year. Hassan
balanced touring with his college-level AP/IB course load at North Hills
has played across America and in London as well. After the much-anticipated
release of the duo’s single ‘Weary Eyes’ in 2013, WAM is working to release an
album that will encompass the themes of over 60 songs written by Hassan.
is currently at Berklee College of Music where he is a music therapy major
specializing in acoustic engineering. He keeps busy song-writing, while also
recording two new albums, a 25-song cover album, an instrumental EP, and
working with his new band ‘Shah’.