COLWOOD, B.C. – The legacy of The Beatles has transcended generations and inspired countless artists worldwide. For Colwood musician Justin Hewitt, this iconic connection to the Fab Four became a poignant source of inspiration and the realization of a dream, rooted in a heartfelt connection to his late father.
Recalling the cherished memories of singing Beatles songs alongside his dad in the car, Justin reflects, “It was something we shared in common—our love of music.” This shared love forged a deep connection between father and son, setting the stage for Justin’s pursuit of a professional music career.
“Dad said to me, ‘Just sing,'” Justin fondly remembers. “Just do it because it fills your heart.” And Justin heeded this advice, embarking on a journey that would ultimately lead him to create two independent albums and earn a dedicated following of appreciative fans.
However, after a decade of baring his soul on stage in local bars, Justin began to experience burnout. “Clearly, we needed a break from each other,” he laughs, reflecting on the intense period of performing. Justin paused his music career for a few years and shifted his focus to work as a civil servant.
The COVID-19 pandemic brought devastating losses into Justin’s life, claiming the lives of four friends and family members, including his father, who resided in England. His father’s longing for a reunion and a shared musical experience became an unfulfilled dream.
“The fear is, you’re not good enough,” Justin opens up about his fears regarding his musical career. “And it’s a fear of being told, ‘No.'” In the face of these fears, Justin decided to dream big and inquired about recording in the iconic Abbey Road Studios, a place dear to his dad due to his love for The Beatles.
After persistent efforts, Abbey Road Studios finally granted him the privilege. Justin and his band members were overjoyed, walking into the historic studio where music legends like Paul McCartney and John Lennon once created their magic.
At Abbey Road, twelve songs, written during a period of personal struggle, were transformed into a triumphant record. Justin felt his father’s presence, thinking, “Dad wouldn’t have believed this,” and imagined his dad’s reaction: “Holy crap! You made it, kid!”
With his dad’s memory in mind, Justin left a touching tribute on the studio’s wall, signing his name and leaving a message: “Dad, I love you! See you on the flip side,” followed by “I did it.” This gesture encapsulated the depth of his gratitude for the inspiration his father provided, making this musical journey all the more meaningful.
“Life is short,” Justin reflects, “So make sure you do the things that make you happy.” Justin’s story is a testament to the enduring power of music and the ability to find strength and purpose in the face of adversity, driven by the love of a father and the timeless influence of The Beatles.