About


“Yea You! Let’s G(r)O(w)!!”

Pak-1 is the alias/stage-name of Samuel Vaqar John – an MC/lyricist/rapper, singer-songwriter, frontman, event organizer and recording/performing artist based out of Honolulu. His upbringing started in Northern Idaho, went to Pakistan/Punjab, then San Bernardino County, to Northern California, and finally Honolulu, Hawaii. Coming of age in the mid 90s and early 00s, he’s heavily shaped by the sounds & culture of the era – in particular Nu-Metal, Alternative/Hard Rock, Electronic, and HipHop/Rap like G-Funk, BoomBap, Underground, and Southern sub-genres.

His favorite MC/rapper/lyricists and groups include: Nas, KRS-One, Wu Tang Clan, Eminem, Tupac, Snoop Dogg, A Tribe Called Quest, G-Unit, Ludacris, Aesop Rock, Jeezy, Kendrick Lamar and many more. His favorite singer-songwriters include: Trent Reznor (of Nine Inch Nails), David Draiman (of Disturbed), Madonna, Damian Marley, Rick James, Boots Riley, Michael Jackson, Billy Idol and more. His favorite bands include: Metallica, Nine Inch Nails, Disturbed, Nirvana, Roxette, The Roots, Rage Against The Machine, Sublime, Alice In Chains, Limp Bizkit, System Of A Down, Run The Jewels, etc.

Pak’s impact is best felt through his Energy and Philosophy/Message – rhythmic illustrations of insight and experience combined with cinematic storytelling rich in vocabulary and flow. Exercising a voice & vibe that stimulates, provokes and rallies, he is a catalyst for both our feel-good musings and our revolutionary linings. His music makes us equal parts want to break FREE, bob heads, but also, reflect – ultimately connecting to one Another, to a Higher Power, and to our human BE-ing.

Pak-1 Facts:

He’s an American-Pakistani.

He’s a holistic health practitioner RN licensed by the state of Hawaii.

He’s a Leo born 15 Aug 1985.

He’s lived in (chronological order) Idaho, Pakistan, California, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, (and currently) Honolulu. His travels/visits include Bangkok, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Kingston/Jamaica, San Juan/Puerto Rico, Sydney+Melbourne+Adelaide+Brisbane/Australia, Mexico City+Oaxaca+Puerto Escondido+Rosarito/Mexico, Oslo+Mjondalen/Norway, New York City, island of Kauai, island of Maui, Vancouver B.C./Canada, Orlando/Florida, Harrison/Northwest Arkansas, Rio de Janeiro/Brazil, St. George/Southwest Utah, Austin/Texas…(where to next?!)…

The grandest serendipitous hook-up of his life (i.e. the Scandinavian blonde beauty found at a half-past two at the after-hours Irish pub the night after Halloween in Waikiki!) became his best friend/soulmate and wife! (She’s Norwegian, a writer/director/content-creator and emerging entrepreneur who Mastered in Sustainability and holds certificates in Substance Abuse Counseling and Emergency Planning & Disaster Management!). This power duo team-up was 14 years ago (and still counting!) as of 2022.

He “died” on a methamphetamine overdose at 16 years old, came back to LIFE and has never been the same (lame) since!

He has fronted 3 bands to date, starting in 2005 – Peace of Mind Crew (2005-2009), Jive Slinky (co-fronted 2010-2013), and Samurai Funktion (2013-present).

He sang in choir (tenor/baritone) throughout high school and college.

He’s officially released 2 singles (2020-“Lyrical Disobedience ft. Illnomadic”; 2018-“Metamorph (Up In The Head)”), and 2 EPs (2018-“I Will Not Be Chain3d”; 2005-“Still Wunda”) as Pak. He released 3 full-length LPs (“Peaceofmind”, “Ques?ion”, “Rhyme4AReason”) all under the Peace of Mind Crew moniker between 2005-2010.

His favorite films include The Matrix, Transformers (1986), Terminator, and Forrest Gump. His favorite filmmakers include Ridley Scott, Quentin Tarantino, Oliver Stone, and the Wachowskis. His favorite books include The Iliad, Kama Sutra, and anything comics/graphic novel, spiritual and self-improvement. His favorite video games include Final Fantasy 7 and Mega Man X. His favorite animes include Cowboy Bebop and Mobile Suit Gundam. For more favorites (or anything else for that matter!), please reach out directly (by email or by DM)!


More than anything, Pak uses his distinct voice & perspective to EMBOLDEN, UNLEASH and BOOST the Mind, Body and Spirit! Themes like Empowerment, Having Fun, Social/Environmental Justice, Relationship, Self-Awareness/Acceptance/Love, Imagination, and Spirituality prevail throughout his lyrics. Whether superfan or first-timer, people consistently cite him “Highlight!” and “Favorite!” after every performance – be it intimate lounge, busy sidewalk, or big-ass muthafunkin’ stage!

“I’m all about Creating, Experiencing and Charging Everybody I meet UP! Pushing Limits, Shining Light, and Enjoying All Life Is 🙂 I want the world to Feel and Know me for the Goods I Kick and the Care I Give!”

(Pssst…! Follow a rabbit hole to Pak’s live-freestyle band Samurai Funktion now…or later…)

Did you know Pak is also co-founder and creative director of local underground hiphop movement/event BounceBackHipHop in Honolulu, and hosted and performed there weekly for 1.5 years before the pandemic shut it down?

Did you hear Pak’s “I Will Not Be Chain3d” album-mixtape (which arrived 8/15/18 as an independent self-release)? Did you know it garnered a fully-funded grassroots Kickstarter album merch campaign, and saw the release of an official music video for the single “Metamorph (Up In The Head)”?

Did you know Pak’s latest single, “Lyrical Disobedience” (ft Illnomadic & produced by Wunda), dropped on Oct 17, 2020?

Keep an eye n’ ear out!

Pak-1’s new single “REMEMBER-PROTECT” (from the self-titled PAK-1 EP) lands on 07/??/22!

With many more releases to follow!

Pak-Back@Republik

(More ’bout Pak-1…)

The son of Pakistani immigrants (mother, a flight attendant turned Registered Nurse, she practiced in a state psychiatric hospital and then a state prison/rehabilitation center, and father, a PhD chemist, mathematician and researcher turned high school science teacher), he was born in Moscow, Idaho and brought up chiefly in Southern California’s Inland Empire, though he also spent formative years in Pakistan’s Punjab province, Northern California’s Napa Valley area, Majuro atoll (capital of the Republic of the Marshall Islands), and Honolulu, Hawaii where he now resides with the love of his life, Josephine (a spirited Scandinavian, creative & intellectual!), and their 3 pet bunny-rabbits.

Family and personal turbulence (parents’ bitter divorce, anger issues, substance abuse) as an upper-middle class suburban teen saw him in some serious trouble until in 2001, at age 16, he discovered rhyming and fell head-over-heels for the art of freestyle rap. Not long after, he started writing, collaborating, producing, recording and performing – sensing this his calling. This culminated in independently releasing several underground albums (“Peaceofmind”, “Ques?ion”, “Still Wunda”, “Rhyme4AReason” – all under the moniker “Peace Of Mind Crew”) and subsequent touring between 2008-2012. In summer 2012 he joined live-band Jive Slinky (exiting the band in 2014 shortly before it dissolved) as well as forming & fronting live progressive hiphop/rap/rock/experimental freestyle outfit Samurai Funktion in 2013. Around the same time in 2012 he went back to school, and in 2018, he earned a Bachelors degree in Nursing (adding to a Bachelors in Visual Communication he’d earned in 2008). The year 2018 also saw the release of his most personal and candid project up to that point, the “I Will Not Be Chain3d” album/mixtape. Since organizing and performing his first live performance in 2005 (an unforgettable college house party at his mama’s pad!), he’s invigorated every space, show and stage he’s booked thereafter, and it’s an undeniable mix of Skill, Energy and Presence that continues to earn him a reputation and remembrance in every scene he’s a part!

Throughout his journey, Pak is bent on mastering the craft of honest & unflinching self-disclosure – delivering impactful, penetrating lyrics & heartfelt renderings channeled off Emotion, Experience, Education and Exchange. Not only that, he embodies a tenacious, independent DIY-spirit as an artist entrepreneur and is a perpetual source of positive vibrations – from championing sustainable mindsets, community engagement and optimistic perspectives to pushing Peace, Love, Unity and (safely) Having Fun both on and off the stage.

Find Pak forging his own path – deriving strength through music and connecting with others through it all. Always cultivating the most enriched position possible on a mission to capture imagination, experience catharsis and energize any & all vibing with!

Pak_LogoFinal
The “Pak-1” logo is comprised of 4 elements – the 3 entities (P, A, and K) interlocking together as 1 (the Circle). The “P” contains the Eye, symbolizing Vision/Insight that correlates with Perception, the “A” houses the Shield, symbolizing Protect/Defend that correlates with Awareness, and the “K” wields the Blade, symbolizing a Weapon/Sharpness that correlates with Knowledge. The 3 entities also represent the aspects of Body, Mind, and Spirit, and the Circle (“1”) symbolizes their Interdependent connection, ultimately expressing a Unified Holistic Nature. This symbol is a visual representation of Pak’s overall ethos and philosophy in life and approach when it comes to creating music, poetry and art.
"Pak's Perspective 20xx":
Our world's in flux.  
Climates change, 
People party,
Everybody hustles to get by.
We’re simultaneously feeling the highest highs, and the lowest lows.
It’s getting tougher to stay up - to live Just, Free, Dignified lives - to navigate these waters.
But we find our Way.

Loving life, pushing back against the BS, getting ahead together.
That’s the mission for Pak.
Generating 
Respect, 
Fun, 
Knowledge, 
Power, 
Transformation.

That said, Let’s G(r)O(w)…
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