One-man band The Secret Handshake (aka Luis Dubuc), who is on tour with The Cab this summer, stopped by the J-14 offices to chat about his latest albumÂ "My Name Up in Lights," his obsession with 90's TV shows, his bad luck when it comes to driving, and more!
J-14: How would you describe the vibe of your new album?
The Secret Handshake: It's just a really upbeat record that's fun -- I think it's just easy to get a hold of. I didn't realize I was making a happy record until I finished and I showed it to someone and they were like, "What's up dude? Are you just stoked on life or like what?" and I was like, "I guess so!" But it's funny because I didn't plan it.
J-14: Why don't you use your real name?
The Secret Handshake: My actual name is Luis. I'm Venezuelan -- that's my background and I'm very proud of it. I have nothing to ashamed of, but I just didn't want people to get the wrong idea -- I didn't want someone to think it was like Julio Iglesias or something like that. I really wanted to be like a non-descriptive band name so then the music could speak for itself. I didn't want anyone to have a predisposed image of what my music was.
J-14: You have a song called "TGIF". Were you a big fan of 90s television shows growing up?
TheÂ Secret Handshake: I recently found this website that sells all the original shows, like all the episodes so I have every episode of Full House and every episode of Family Matters. It's what I do. I think it's really cool. I think it definitely inspired the record like when we hear the record there's definitely just lots of just fun elements to it that are just really cool.
J-14: Have you ever had an embarrassing moment on stage?
The Secret Handshake: We were once playing this show in Baltimore and I got too close to the edge of the stage and this girl reached up grabbed my belt and ripped it off. She got the buckle off, like she ripped it off and she actually got kicked out of the show and took my belt with her! It was so embarrassing. For the rest of the set I was trying to sing with one hand and was like holding my pants with the other hand.
J-14: Yikes! So random question: how are you at driving?
The Secret Handshake: When I got my license, I took my parents' car out for a drive, like literally first day I got the license. I'm driving and I was in the middle lane and I decided I wanted to turn right from the middle lane 'cause I was about to miss my street. I just turned and hit a car in my parents' car. A week later I'm driving and it's raining, I'm following my friend. I'm just loving my little life and we're coming down a hill, so I hit the brakes -- and I just slid right into him! I thought I was the best driver -- when I went to Drivers Ed, I was like "I got a 100 percent, Mom!" It was more like 100% doomed to failure!