night, love you

Lose My Number – Nightly courtesy of YouTube

Nashville isn’t just for country music anymore.. it’s starting to find its niche in the alternative indie pop music world as well.. this is where you’ll find the band Nightly… I think you are really going to want to stop and take time out to listen to this trio of talented musicians. Here’s my interview with the band.

Q: When people think of Nashville, ALT pop music isn’t necessarily the first thing that comes to mind. Music City has deep roots embedded in country music here. How does Nightly shake up the ALT music scene in Nashville & how do you think you stand out from the rest of the bands?

A: for sure! I think while it is heavily country, there is actually an amazing pop/alt scene that has been building here..so many cool bands and artists are moving here. there is also an amazing community. the other thing is that Nashville has some of the best songwriters in the world so it’s a great place to learn about the craft of songwriting.

L to R: Nightly members Nick Sainato, Jonathan Capeci and Joey Baretta

Q: Nightly consists of 3 members, Jonathan Capeci & Joey Baretta, who are cousins, and Nick Sainato. For Jonathan and Joey, when did you guys actually start playing together and then when did the three of you hook up and start performing and writing songs together?

A: we started in 2016, kinda without a band name just writing songs. joey and I moved to Nashville from philly and we met nick here in town. it was instant chemistry.

night, love you courtesy of Apple Music

Q: In 2020, you released the album, “night, love you”, which is really the meaning behind the name of the band name. How did this moniker come to light? How did you decide on the band’s name? What is the significance?

Q: the first song we ever wrote was this song that we never released called “the night” and we kinda fell in love with the phrase night, love you and eventually got to night-ly or nightly.

older by nightly courtesy of Spotify

Q: The song “older” was off the singles on night, love you. This song hit me emotionally, it definitely moved me, made me think about my life particularly the lyrics, “ I don’t do the things I’m supposed to. Overthinking, under focused. Emotional rollercoaster. Keeping it all on my shoulders. Hoping no one will notice. I’m no good at getting older.” I mean, this song could be referring to pretty much everyone yet it also seems so personal. Tell me more about this song and did it take an emotional toll writing it?

A: thank you! it’s one of my favorites that we’ve ever written. I knew that the album was missing a ballad and so I was kinda thinking of ideas in the back of my mind for about a week and I just would write like a couple lines a day in my notes app on my phone..then one thursday night, I sat down and the whole song just came out in like 30. it’s deeply personal and is written about all the things I was feeling at the time. I tried to be as raw as possible and while I think it’s so cool how people have connected to it, it’s really just about exactly the place I was in that time of my life.

Q: When I first listened to the band, I heard similarities to The 1975 and Old Swing. Who would you say has had an influence in your musical style? Or is it your own spin?

A: we definitely are fans of lots of artists and bands like coldplay, the neighbourhood, the killers and about a million others but our goal is to simply sound like ourselves. but yes, I think everyone builds on their influences.

Clockwise: Frank Ocean, Coldplay and Sza

Q: This is for each of you: Who are you listening to right now on your Spotify/Apple Music music playlist? Who would you recommend for me to check out?

Q: sza is like my favorite artist right now and has been for years. I also love frank ocean, I’ve recently been going back to coldplay’s first album.. I just love how it kinda sounds like it was recorded in a bedroom or something.

Buy tix here

Q: You guys have been on tour earlier in your career in ‘16-‘17 & had opened for some pretty big names like Ke$Ha and The All American Rejects and performed at Bonaroo Music Festival. And now you’re going on tour and supporting The Midnight on 3/9 at Brooklyn Bowl in your hometown of Nashville. How excited are you for this upcoming tour? Does it feel good to get back out there on the road? Will there be any surprises on tour?

A: we are so excited to get back on the road. COVID has kept us from being on tour for 2 years which was so tough when it comes to the cycle of releasing music. so far no special guests during the set but we will be playing a new song and probably bring back at least one old song that we haven’t played in a few years.

Q: When on tour things can get hectic….Do you have any pretty-show prep? Any routines, superstitions before going on stage?

A: honestly not really…maybe a few push-ups to warm up the body, lots of water, a shot of tequila and we usually do a little huddle before we go on stage.

Q: Where can fans find the band’s music and merch?

A: you can stream our music on all platforms and merch is on our website http://www.nightloveyou.com

You can also find the band on IG: @nightly; Twitter: @nightly; Facebook: @thisisNIGHTLY and TikTok: @nightlyofficial

Thanks so much to the band and if you see any dates on their tour schedule hitting your town, Make sure you grab a ticket!

Upcoming interviews with Chappell Roan, Aeden Alvarez, Anorak Patch and more.

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist.

Drinking Boys and Girls Choir

Live at KEXP Studio

I read a lot of articles about bands to watch out for and best bands of the year and a couple of magazines, (Paste Magazine and SPIN) both agreed that Drinking Boys and Girls Choir is one band you should be listening to. Despite the difficulty for many people who probably don’t understand Korean, their music transcends the boundaries of language. So let me introduce you to Drinking Boys and Girls Choir

Q: Today, I’m speaking with Drinking Boys and Girls Choir from South Korea. First off, great name of the band. How did you decide on the name? And who are the members & who plays what instrument?

A: At first, we had no idea about the band’s name, so we just practiced and made songs. After some point we needed the name and just put some concepts like, “we are drinking, we looks like teenager and we want to sing along”. That’s it. MJ sings and on drums, Meena sings and plays bass Jung Hoon sings and plays guitar.

Daegu, South Korea

Q: The band is based out of Daegu, which has approximately 2.5M people (that’s 1.5M more than the state I live in here in the United States) but Seoul has 3 times more in population. Did you ever consider living in Seoul to reach a bigger audience with your music? What do you like most about living in Daegu?

A: Over 10 years ago, MJ and Meena went to Seoul to be a rockstar and came back. At that time, all the kids that doing indie music thought that Seoul was the KEY but it wasn’t. Besides, these days, we don’t need to go somewhere outside of hometown more. We can take transportation easily and we don’t need to worry about high cost of living in the capital.

Marriage License on Spotify music

Q: Let’s talk about your music… your latest album release, Marriage License, is really good. (Mind you, I don’t understand what you are singing about) but it doesn’t matter. Your sound is so great, it’s classic punk pop, mosh pit, skate punk, head nodding fun!! Who writes the songs? What are some of your favorite tracks on the album and why?

A: We write songs everybody in the band but if you know the details you can find it on streaming site or something. We made this album with particular ideas about discrimination. So every song had their own idea and beauty. Want not to choose a favorite song.

Linda Linda (Japanese version)

Q: The band released a single, Linda Linda, in 2020 in two different languages that wasn’t on either album. Was this something special? What is this song about? (I’m partial to this song because that’s my name, maybe use it as my theme song? 😁)

A: Oh Linda! The song is a cover of a Japanese band named The Blue Hearts famous song, “Linda Linda”. You should check the original song. In Japanese version, we just covered the song in our way but in Korean version, we wrote the lyrics. It is about some feelings from trashy Korean drama that Meena was watching.

Q: What do you guys do for fun when not performing?

A: Just keep rest, some workout and care snails.

Get The Most and Ellegarden

Q: This is for all of you: Who are you listening to right now on your music playlists?

A: Get The Most; Kirara, Ellegarden

Indonesian police force

Q: So I read an article that your band has had a couple of run ins with police at your shows lecturing the band on drug use. Tell me about these experiences, that must’ve been surreal.

A: The gig organizer was included on the drug use. We couldn’t understand the Indonesian so we noticed that the problem was about drug use after all situation was done. It was quite terrifying and puzzled because in Indonesia, we couldn’t find some beer easily so we thought we do not anything wrong.

Q: Have your families been supportive of your music careers? Are they some of your biggest fans?

A: We have some fans that come almost every gig and write good and touching reviews. It is also very helpful to keep doing this.

Q: Will you be going on tour in the Spring (depending on COVID situations)

A: All depending on COVID circumstances. We have day jobs so if the quarantine is not disappear, we may not go anywhere overseas.

Q: Where can fans find your music and merchandise?

A: Outside of Korea, we recommend Bandcamp…And inside of Korea, you can find some of our stuff in the venue of Naver store. Thanks!

Thank you to DBGC for the interview.. It’s great to see that punk music is flourishing all over the world.. Be sure to check the band on Spotify as well and Apple Music.

I’m hoping to bring more interviews your way in the next few weeks. Any bands you might suggest for an interview, please drop me a msg on my IG or my email at mewzickkismylife@gmail.com.

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist.

Betcha Gonna Love Us

Pleasure by Betcha courtesy of YouTube

As I’ve mentioned before, I love listening to the playlists that Spotify creates for me and one of the songs that caught my ear was Pleasure by the band Betcha.. so when I like a song, I need to learn more about the artist… so lucky for me they happily agreed to talk with me.

Q: You’re based out of Nashville, a city full of aspiring musicians trying to be the next discovery.. what makes your band different from all the rest that you believe has helped your success?

A: Good question! This year we took a hard look in the mirror to find out what makes us stand out. The one thing that makes us unique is how we stay true to being a rock band, with our four personalities and playing styles blending together to create the Betcha sound. Modern music in the 2020’s has introduced so many genres and styles and we think we bring something fresh yet familiar to the alternative rock scene.

L to R: Chase Wilfork, Ben Booth, Charlie Green and Taylor Dabray

Q: The band consists of Charlie Green (vocals/guitar), Taylor Dabray (bass/keyboards), Ben Booth (lead guitar) and Chase Wilfork (drums)…you met at Belmont University, had some jam sessions and performed under a different name.. who made the decision to change the name and why? Just not feeling the old name?

A: Our band used to be “Wilder”. It is Charlie’s middle name and it fit the sound that we used to mainly play, which was much more folk rock based. We changed it to “Betcha” because we actually got a cease and desist from another band! We like Betcha a lot more though. It comes from a combination of all of our names. BE from Ben, T from Taylor and CHA from Chase and Charlie.

Q: I have some fond memories of attending college parties with that one good band you looked forward to seeing every Thursday night….were you that band? Have those fans stuck around with you today? And any crazy memorable stories from those shows you care to share?

A: Everybody loves a good college band! We started out doing a lot of weekend warrior shows at southern fraternity and college parties. We would go to school during the week and drive down and play gigs in frat backyards, basements, farms or anywhere else people would see us. One in particular, we played a UGA fraternity event on a farm in the middle of nowhere. We drove up out of Google Maps range to a little barn in the middle of a field, set up our equipment and played a show to about 30 people that were heading out there. It tuned out to be such a fun memory, playing in the freezing cold and taking swigs of moonshine from the college kids in attendance and made some lifelong fans along the way.

5AM – Betcha courtesy of YouTube

Q: Let’s talk some music…you’ve released 3 singles in 2021 with the latest, 5AM… I think pretty much anyone can relate to is the message here: “Waking up at 5 in the morning, Take a deep breath I still can’t breathe. Read a stop sign as a warning… need a reset or I’m gonna go crazy”. Talk more about the meaning of this song.. and also are we progressing towards an album release in 2022?

A: 5AM is a very special song to us. It is based out of feeling overwhelmed when other people and the world expect a lot out of you and just need to step away and have a moment to yourself. 2021 was filled with a lot of frustrating moments for our band and this song captures a feeling of us overcoming these difficult moments together. In 2022, we are definitely working towards some sort of project! It will be something in between an EP and album; but we are definitely are going to release a project.

Betcha performing at Cobra Lounge in Chicago on 12/5/21

Q: You just finished up your Winter Tour with stops in St Louis, Chicago, Boston and NYC to name a few…How does it feel being back in front of crowds again? What was your favorite city to play so far?

A: We did! This December tour was so special for us. We took a shot in the dark and were unsure about what the turnout would be, but we had soooo many fans come to our shows. St Louis, Chicago and Atlanta were some of the best but the most special one by far was Nashville. We have been a band for five years and never sold out a hometown show, and we sold out the High Wyatt and had an absolute blowout show that was one of our most special to date.

Q: This question is for each of you: A) Favorite meal on the road B) Favorite after show food C) Choice of beverage

A: This is Doobie answering for all of us on these! I know all of us pretty well and we have very similar tastes haha. A) Whole Foods when we are feeling healthy, In & Out when we are not. B) Pizza. C) Lots of coffee!!

Top clockwise: Tame Impala, Kanye, Jack Harlow and The 1975

Q: For everyone: Who would we find on your top artists on your Spotify Wrapped 2021 this year?

A: We are all over the place! Some of our top artists are The 1975, Tame Impala, Jack Harlow and Kanye.

The Knitting Factory in Brooklyn, NY

Q: Touring can take a toll on bands…no sleep, skipping meals, late nights, lugging heavy equipment…how does the band stay grounded and stay in check so your overall mental well being is ready for each night?

A: That’s an amazing question. Mental and physical health is such an important part of being on the road. Everyone needs to have personal time and spend it how they like, however some of the best resetting things we like to do come on the off days: going to museums, going to a local gym, going to a pub for a Guinness and catching up on sleep are some of the ways we like to do that.

Betcha

Q: Where can fans find your music and merch?

A: On our website at http://betchaband.com/ or on any major music streaming platform!!

Thanks to Betcha for the great interview. You can also find them on Instagram at BetchaBand and on Facebook at Betcha Band.

I’m going to be posting several interviews in the next few weeks, if you would know of a band you’d like to see interviewed, send an email to mewzickkismylife@gmail.com or message me on Instagram at Music_Stylist.

Interviews coming up with Drinking Boys and Girls Choir, Nightly, Anorak Patch and many more..

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist.

The Satellite Station

See You Again – The Satellite Station (courtesy of YouTube)

I spoke with Travis Rue, of The Satellite Station, a few months ago because his voice moved me so much, I really wanted to know about the man behind the music….and special thanks to Zachisatourist for bringing my attention to this talented artist.

Q: When did you start taking music seriously enough that you felt like this was something that you wanted to focus on doing it as a career? You play multiple instruments…how many and which ones can you play?

A: I played in bands when I was in college that were pretty serious but it wasn’t till I started The Satellite Station and people really started to connect with the music that I considered it an option. I play piano, trumpet, French horn, guitar, bass and mandolin. I have been wanting to start picking up the violin….so maybe that is next.

Q: There are many musicians of various genres to come out of Ohio with great success like; Bootsy Collins, Chrissie Hynde, Guided by Voices, Filter and John Legend to name a few…were there any artists that you grew up admiring that you wanted to be like or follow in their footsteps?

A: I have been influenced by so many artists over the years. Some more than others at different times in my life. I would say the artists who have influenced me the most are Elton John, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Petty, Gregory Alan Isakov, Counting Crows and Andrew McMahon in all his projects.

Only Human by The Satellite Station on Spotify

Q: Your latest album release, Only Human, it’s pretty obvious you’re an amazing songwriter…listening to the title track lyrics, “just try to keep myself from drowning, trying to keep my head from pounding, life’s short and we fail sometimes cause we are only human.” It’s pretty much the perfect song for every person on the planet. I felt like I was being swept up in a range of emotions. Was it difficult for you to write this album?

A: Well, I definitely appreciate the kind words! Writing is something I do everyday and is a daily struggle. Some days go better than others, but I try to finish a new song every week. That means for every song you hear there are likely 4-5 that you don’t. During the time I was writing and recording the Only Human album, I probably wrote between 45-50 songs. Some were not great and have been thrown away…and others were saved for future projects. Writing never feels easy.

Q: What does Travis Rue do when he’s not writing music?

A: I spend time with family and friends. I try to spend as much time as I can outdoors either running or hiking. I am ALWAYS reading a book. Currently “Apples Never Fall by Liane Moriarty.

Q: What are your Top 5 books that you would recommend to someone like me who needs to read more and watch less tv?

A: I love to read so this the perfect question for me. Here are some of my favorites I have read recently…. 1) Bear Town by Fredrik Backman 2) The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein 3) All the Red Rising books by Pierce Brown 4) Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty and 5) An Absolutely Remarkable Thing by Hank Green

AlexRainbird Music

Q: Who would you credit to have helped you the most in your career in terms of support and always being there for you during the ups and downs in your songwriting process, success and overall happiness?

A: I have to call out a few people here. First, my friend and producer Michael Estok. He has been critical to the success of The Satellite Station. And the songs would not be near as good if not for him. Alex and Beth at AlexRainBird Music. They introduced me to my first real audience and have been so supportive of my music ever since. Lastly, my wife, Mariah, who has put up with my ups and downs as an artist and all the times I play the same section of a song over and over again until I just get it right.

Q: Cats or Dogs? Kayak or Canoe? Mountains or Lakefront? Camping or Glamping? Summer or Winter?

A: Definitely Dogs… I have a Shorkie named Winnie… Canoe…….This is a tough one…can I pick a lakefront house in the mountains? Definitely mountains over oceanfront.. Glamping….I like being outdoors but have limited survival skills…. Summer over Winter but I would pick Fall as my favorite.

Q: Will you be taking the album out on the road in 2022? How do you think these COVID restrictions will affect this winter’s touring as opposed to 2020 where it was pretty non existent?

A: Yes! Hoping to ramp up the tour schedule in the near future. I have a close member of my family that is very high risk so I have been careful but plan to start increasing the show volume soon! I, also always working on new music!!

Merch

Q: Where can fans find your music and buy some merch?

A: You can find my music wherever you listen to it ( Spotify, Apple Music and Deezer). I have a merch store on my website at https://www.thesatellitestation.com/ ( link above also above)

You can also find Travis on his Instagram at thesatellitestationmusic.

Stay tuned for more interviews..coming up interviews with Betcha and The Burning Lights.. if you have a suggestion on who I should interview, drop me a line..

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist..

Newport’s Laden Valley Homecoming

To Be Alone – Laden Valley recorded live at Uptown Sound in Providence, RI

There have been many exciting things happening in Newport, RI this month… including the filming of Hocus Pocus 2 in Washington Square & Man vs Food at The Hungry Monkey on Broadway but TONIGHT at The Jane Pickens Theater at 7pm is Laden Valley’s debut album release party.

Q: So it’s great to see a band from my home state of Rhode Island, having such success and loving what they do.. The band consists of Evan St Martin and Dave Sarazen. How did you and Evan get together to form the band, did you know each other from previous bands you’ve performed with?

A: Dave and I met 3 years ago when Dave showed up an hour early to a Bible study at my house. We didn’t have any context for the music we’d done in the past, but there was a guitar in my living room and we kind of got to playing right away.

Q: Your voices blend so well together & the harmonies are so beautiful..especially on your single, “Do You Love Me Still?”..it’s just music to kick back and relax in a hammock… each of you have played in bands before Laden Valley… is the style of music that you are creating now some of your best work?

A: The style of music we are working on now is intentionally divergent than anything either of us have done before with other projects. We knew we wanted to focus heavily on vocal harmony, which lends itself to folk music, but we also wanted to be careful not to pigeonhole ourselves. Laden Valley, more than anything else, is a space to stretch out and take a shot at the kinds of music we’re into at the moment or have been wanting to do for awhile. I wouldn’t say it’s better than anything that we’ve done previously, it’s just a bit less genre specific.

Jane Pickens Theater

Q: What are some of your favorite venues to perform at in Rhode Island and why?

A: There are a bunch of great venues in Rhode Island. The ones we’re most interested in are the ones we haven’t played. Jane Pickens Theater being one. We knew when we were coming up with ideas for an album release show that we wanted to do it at a theater. During that time I went to see Jaws at Jane Pickens and thought this is the place!

Q: So the show is tonight, Haunt The House is supporting. Will there be any surprises or guest appearances? How pumped are you guys for tonight’s show?

A: We’ve put together an amazing band for this show. Even though we the front band as a duo, the music goes through a lot of hands during the recording process. I’ve always said that to truly represent recordings in a live setting that we’d need 8 people. We managed to pull together 7 for the show and I have to say I’ve been blown away by how things sound at rehearsal.

Perro Salado Newport, RI

Q: Where do Dave and Evan consider some of the best late night food found in RI, especially after show performances?

A: After the show at Jane Pickens, I’m headed to Perro Salado for some tacos.

Q: Favorite music festival played and favorite music festival wishlist.

A: We started playing together right around the time the world shutdown, so we haven’t played a festival yet. At the top of the wishlist, without question: Newport Folk and Telluride Bluegrass.

Top clockwise: Vampire Weekend, Andy Shauf and Grateful Dead

Q: Who would be the most surprising artist to be found on either of your Spotify/Apple !used playlists?

A: I doubt if it’d come as a surprise (and I’m definitely not speaking for Dave) but Vampire Weekend and The Grateful Dead have been in heavy rotation for several months now. And also the latest album from Andy Shauf..

Laden Valley patches

Q: Where can fans find your music and purchase some of your merchandise?

A: Wherever you can stream music! And if you want merch, you’ll need to be at the show TONIGHT if you want to get some!!

Thanks Evan and can’t wait for the show! Tonight 7pm at Jane Pickens in Newport. Haunt The House will be supporting the band. There are few tickets still available, you can purchase here: Laden Valley Album Release Show

Make sure you follow Laden Valley for all their latest news and music at http://www.ladenvalley.com/ and you can also find them on Instagram at ladenvalley.

And don’t forget to follow my blog for all the indie artists you may or may not have heard before including my upcoming interview with The Satellite Station Music. http://yourmusicstylist.org

See you at the show but until then I’m Your Music Stylist!!

Bands You Should Know feat. Great Good Fine Ok

So Far So Good – Great Good Fine Ok courtesy of Youtube

Well, I have been on a bit of a hiatus but am back now so this was the last interview I did before taking some time off. This is a band that should be part of your everyday playlist because of their feel good sound and hopefully after you learn a little bit about them, you will be adding & sharing their music with others. Here is Great Good Fine Ok…..

L to R: Luke Moellman and Jon Sondler

Q: So the band consists of Luke Moellman and Jon Sondler…now is it true that you met one night & you already had written a song together by the next morning? You must really have some great chemistry together… How did you guys end up meeting in the first place?

A: Most of a song! Luke and I met and became friends about 9 years ago when he was living around the corner from me in Brooklyn with my close friend and piano player. One night after not seeing each other for months, we ran into each other on the street of Manhattan and decided to write a song together. He sent me a track that night and i was instantly inspired to write the lyrics and melody, “You’re The One For Me” was born.

Q: Was it easy to think of the name for the band? What are some of the other names that you considered?

A: Great Good Fine Ok was a name I’d thought of years earlier. I have no clue what inspired it. I kept in my mental bank of cool band names and when it was time to put a name to our project, I unveiled it to Luke. His response was, “I don’t hate it.” So it stuck.

Synth-pop (short for synthesizer pop; also called techno-pop ) is a subgenre of new wave music that first became prominent in the late 1970s and features the synthesizer as the dominant musical instrument.

Q: Synthpop is how most people have described your music so what do you think of the controversy surrounding the difference between synthpop and synthwave? Some people take issue with the two being lumped together. (Synthopop emerging from 70s-80s New Wave & Synthwave emerging from 00s EDM/electro)

A: For the first few years, our music was more ethereal, dreamy…. and yeah synthy. Synthpop felt like our genre. Over the past 8 years, we’ve evolved and expanded our palate a ton — i think indie pop or just pop feels more accurate at this point. We still absolutely use synths, pulling inspiration from both the 80’s and newer electric sounds. I didn’t know there was controversy about it!

Q: Not only does the band write their own songs but you also do a lot of remixing for other artists’ music… who are the some of the bands that you’ve worked with in the past & some remixes you really had some fun with?

A: Luke is the producer/mixer/engineer behind the remixes. He’s done some absolutely incredible ones throughout the years. Most recently he did one for the TwinXL song “Slow Heart”. Some of my faves were remixes he did for Foxes, X Ambassadors, Morgxn, Le Youth and one for St Lucia that I contributed to with some vocals.

Great Good Fine Ok’s eponymous fifth EP

Q: In 8 years, you’ve teamed up for 5 EP’s: Body Diamond, Remixes Vol I, Easy (Remixes), GG Four and the latest Great Good Fine Ok… how long does it usually take to create songs? and do you guys make anytime for yourself?

A: Some songs take longer than others but we are usually working on something….we love making music! We are also extremely meticulous and picky about what sees the light of day. That said, we absolutely make time for other things. We both have hobbies, families etc. It ultimately helps the art to focus on other passions.

Progress (not the official video)

Q: I want to bring your attention to your single, Progress, released in 2020. This is the song that brought me to the discovery of your band. Why this isn’t on more playlists is beyond me? I am campaigning to get this in rotation somewhere!! Absolutely one of my faves…Is this about a relationship going through some issues?? Tell me more..

A: Thank you! We really love this one too! “Progress” is about realizing that it’s okay to make mistakes, evolve and figure out how to make things right. We relased it during a time in this country when many people were revaluating priorities and figuring out better ways to move forward — it felt timely..

Q: Since you have done so many collaborations with other artists, do you already have an artist in mind before you get set to write the song?

A: We love collaborating and feel so grateful to have worked with some of our favorite artists over the past year and there are still a couple more coming! Sometimes we’ll start a song with another artist with a collaboration as a goal. Sometimes we’ll reach out to an artist later who we think could add something amazing. We’ve done it all sorts of ways!

Q: Where can fans find your music?

A: Fans can find our music everywhere music is found!

They can also find your music at Great Good Fine Ok band page..

Thank you for the great interview! I have a couple of interviews coming up with The Burning Lights, The Satellite Station and Laden Valley. Stay tune for more..

Until next time, I’m Your Music Stylist..

Jack of All Trades

Jack Downey

When I first reached out to Jack about an interview I assumed he was in a couple of bands but it’s actually like 6+ bands and he’s probably joined more since I spoke to him in early June. So lets find out what drives him to want more..

Q: At what age did you first pickup an instrument? And how many can you play?

A: In 5th grade, I started playing the viola, but that was mainly because I had to play an instrument of some sort as a school requirement. I began writing and teaching myself to sing in 5th/6th grade, but I began playing guitar in 7th grade. After a few years of that, I quickly learned bass guitar, out of a lack of bass players and in the past few years, I’ve been teaching myself drums. Most recently I took a piano class at school, so I now know a little about that too.

Q: You grew up in Hingham, MA…what are some of your favorite places you and your friends like to hang out at & where do you guys usually get together to play music?

A: Some of my favorite places to hang out with friends are Cronin Field in Hingham, which is a recreational area behind the town hall; Turkey Hill, a very scenic hill by Weir River Farm; and downtown Hingham. The Shipyard was also somewhere I went with my friends a lot because there was a movie theater there. As for playing music in Hingham, there really aren’t a lot of venues besides the South Shore Conservatory, so the only places I’ve played music in Hingham are at my house with my band mates or at Hingham High School’s Annual Singer Songwriter Showcase.

L to R: Sun Mask, Friday Life and Wave Goodbye are just a few of the numerous bands Jack is a part of.

Q: Jack, you are in a multitude of bands…you also produce, write the lyrics and promote your music as well. Name all the bands and projects you are currently involved in.

Friday Life: my longest lasting project. It’s an indie rock/post punk band with a lot of 80’s influence. I sing and play guitar in this band. We’re playing a bunch of shows this summer and beyond.

Wave Goodbye: my solo project. It’s a lofi bedroom pop project that I’ve released music under since 2018. This is where I go to write very emotional, honest music without the stylistic frills of my other bands. Since it’s a solo project, I play all the instruments and sing as well.

Sun Mask: This is a shoe gaze/noise rock duo formed with my brother Brendan during the pandemic. As with Friday Life (which Brendan is also in), I sing and play guitar. Things have slowed down a bit with this band having so many things on both our plates but we still have some tricks up our sleeves, so stay tuned.

The Dream Thieves: I play drums in this band, which I joined in November 2020 after meeting the frontman, J, in August of that year. We’ve been working on some demos which will hopefully be put this summer if all goes well.

Suburban Windows: This is a beats project I have on the side for fun. It’s more a hobby than anything, but it does help me hone my production skills.

Keegan Turner: I don’t believe this is a long term gig but I currently play bass in Keegan’s backing band. I took up that role after he reached out in June of this year.

I am also working on another side project, which is more of a surf pop based, but it’s still in its infancy so there is not much to say about it at the moment. I also have a single in the works that I recorded with Jack McLaughlin, Friday Life’s bassist. That project is called Shipwrights. I also played bass in The Understatements reunion show on August 6th..

I write most of the lyrics for the bands in which I sing and play as well..As for production, it depends on the project, but I am working on being able to do that.

Q: You do some DJ’ing as well… where can we find you regularly spinning? What is your equipment of choice when you DJ?

A: I actually only DJ on WDOM PC Radio on campus. I have a show called Tune Raider, which is derived from Tune Raider, a booking company that I run (which is starting to get up and running again now that shows are coming back). I mainly play a mix of underground songs from the past as well as local music that deserves more recognition. Currently, the show is on hiatus due to school being out, but once I go back in the Fall, I cannot wait to get back on air.

Q: Now that you are a full time student at Providence College… how are you able to balance all these bands and courses during the full time school year?

A: I am really only able to balance all these projects with school because they are not all active at the same time. Friday Life often goes on a bit of a hiatus during the school year due to three of the members going to different colleges. Sun Mask also shuts down a little, meaning when I am at school. I only have Dream Thieves and my solo projects to concentrate on. However, I am aware once that I finish school, I am going to have to make some hard decides about what stays and what goes.

Q: How many EPs & albums do you have recorded? Which one are you most proud of?

Here is a list of my recorded works:

Friday Life: – Demos [EP], hello. [EP], Each Passing Summer (acoustic) [Single], Every Time (Ultrasound Sessions) [Single], Where Are We Going? [Album].. There are a few covers/demos on SoundCloud, as well as a joke song called BEANOS on Bandcamp, but those don’t really count in my book.

Wave Goodbye: split ep with sadwaves, exhuming what we were [EP], I have no idea what this is [EP], there is a light that never goes out (the Smiths cover) [Single], nothing ever goes as planned [EP], California friends [Single], oh no [EP], two blue songs [Single], now you’re gone feat the mudskippers [Single], the graduate [EP], drag me down [Single], back to square one [Single], youth songs [EP], no more heroes [Single], tell me it’s alright (even if it’s a lie) [Single], summer [EP]

Sun Mask: Shimmering Heat [Demo] [Single], Into The Sea [Demo] [Single], The City [Demo] [Single]

Suburban Windows: Beat Tape 2020 [EP], cinema [Single], phantom frequency [Single], really nice day [Single]

I have contributed drums to two Puddlejumper songs (an indie rock duo from UChicago). New Lies & For Remo Muse

I also used to release work under the name Above Suburbia during my early high school years. That was my first ever musical project. Shallow (Just Another Wallflower) [Single], Growing Up Staying Young [EP], Fear [Single], Above Suburbia [Album], Shallow (Just Another Wallflower re-recording [Single], Shallow (Junkyard dog remix) [Single], Fake Flowers: B-Sides, Demos and Rarities [Album], Echoes From Some Fictional Landscape: The Lost Album [EP], Don’t Ask (Single with the Toxic 70’s), Best Above Suburbia [Album], Someone Out There [Single]

I am most proud of, Where Are We Going album by Friday Life. It was our second time going to a studio (the first time did not go well) and to truly hear the songs come together was amazing. I fully intend to improve upon this album on the next album but I am still really proud of it.

Q: Will we be seeing you perform this summer anywhere? Where can fans find your music?

A: Friday Life have performed a lot this summer actually but we’re going to focus more on writing but we’ll still play a few shows here and there. Friday Life, Wave Goodbye, Puddlejumper and Keegan Turner have music on all streaming services but the best band sites to use are Bandcamp and SoundCloud. There’s more material there. Friday Life and Wave Goodbye also have websites. Wave Goodbye & Friday Life and these have several links to other sites.

Here are some Instagram accounts you should follow: Friday Life, Wave Goodbye, Sun Mask, The Dream Thieves, Keegan Turner, Puddlejumprr and The Understatements. ..

Wow! I have to say that is a lot of material you have out there. Even some national acts that have been around for a few years, I do not think they have a catalog as extensive as yours. Hoping to catch a show of yours in the near future.

Thanks again Jack for a great interview.. The summer has been flying by so fast and I’m trying to fit all the interviews in a timely manner..

I have interviews with Great Good Fine Ok, Of Tik Tok fame Bear Bailey, Roanoke, Gentle Temper and many more..

I have a giveaway coming up on my Instagram coming up in celebration of my 50th Interview, which was 2 interviews ago.. stay tuned to music_stylist on IG.

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist.

Straight Outta Sweden

Ears Ringing – Isle of You courtesy of Youtube

If you’ve never heard of the website, Corite, this is place where you can actually help an artist fund their music by starting campaigns for the artist/band. Then if that song becomes a hit, you feel like you were a part of something special.. this is where I discovered the band, Isle of You.. I really like them and I hope you will too..

Elina Danielsson & Ida Johansson of Isle of You

Q: The band consists of besties Ida & Elina Danielsson & you’re straight outta Sweden. So how long have you actually been friends? And how did you guys meet?

A: Short answer: We’ve been best friends since we were 10 years old and Elina lured me into eating a handful of chili flakes! But I survived and decided that I liked her anyway!

A: Long answer: We both grew up on a very small island in Sweden, called Oland. So we went to the same school and the same culture school but we didn’t know each other for many years. Then, when we were about 10 years old, I asked Elina to take these guitar classes together with me, and then we became best friends almost immediately…but still after the chili incident. That happened the first time ever when I went to Elina’s parents’ house. We’re supposed to kill some time before guitar class at Elina’s home, load up with noodles and Oboy ( a chocolate drink mix powder). I’d never seen chili flakes before but after that I learned that if a stranger ever gives you a handful of them and tells you to eat them, it’s pure best friend material.

Q: I love the stories when I interview artists of how people come together, realize they can sing, sound amazing together and form a band. it’s sort of like a cosmic energy flowing… Do you believe in those types of things? When you met, did you realize you were destined for greater things? Positive energies connecting?

A: Agree! It’s almost like an unreal experience! We’ll never forget the first time we sang in harmonies, at our first singing class. Our vocal coach showed us that she got goosebumps and we, who were 10 years old and had never sung together before, we’re completely blown away. We’ll never forget that sight of that arm haha…And I think, looking back, that we started Isle of You right then and there. I mean we never stopped after that! And it feels kind of destined that we are doing this?

A: I think we believe in that sort of thing a little! Cause it feels like there is some kind of magic happening when we’re singing together, like we’re creating something more that can’t come from just the two of us…like a third band member haha. And writing music is also something that makes us believe…in something. Because it feels like those ideas are not always coming from ourselves…it’s from somewhere else and our job is to capture the melodies and words.

Sia

Q: So Sia took notice of your single, “Bodyguard”, and added it to one of her playlists on Spotify in 2018….that must’ve freaked you out, what was that like for both of you to be acknowledged by a highly successful music artist?

A: Yeah we definitely freaked out. I remember hiding in the bathroom at the coffee shop where I was working at the time so I could stare at myself in the mirror and just try to take it. And then I told every customer what had happened!!

A: We owe Sia and her team a lot! First of all, Swedish national radio started to play our music almost immediately after that. I don’t know if they would have found our music without her. And it has given us a lot of inspiration, self esteem as songwriters and artists!

Q: Let’s talk about recent releases… you’ve released 2 singles so far… Fallback in April & Ears Ringing this month…. Fallback kind of makes me think of a person who doesn’t want to be left behind in a relationship, wants to move forward to the future….and Ears Ringing… connecting with someone on a deeper level.. Am I close?? Tell me about these 2 songs.

A: That’s true! You’re right! We love to write about love and relationships because there’s so many different angles to take on themes. Nothing is as complex and emotional like these things.

A: We wrote these songs when we were in totally different places in life. Fallback is our most recent song.. it’s about being in love and all the doubts that come with that, when everything just feels a little too good.

A: Ears Ringing, on the other side, is a song that we wrote when we weren’t in a good place in life. We had both had a rough time finding out what we wanted to do in life and how we wanted to live relationship-wise. So that is a song that came out of anxiety and doubts. That’s probably why they are totally different.

Q: What are the last 3 songs that each of you played on your Spotify? (Or whatever streaming music service you have)

Elina: Tove Lo – Hey, you got drugs?; MGMT – Kids and Lykke Li – Little Bit

Ida: Alba August – Lights; Dua Lipa – Levitating and Emerson Leif – Hesitate

Clockwise: Roxette, Robyn, Lykkie Li, The Cardigans and ABBA

Q: Growing up in Sweden, there are some major music idols to look up to like ABBA, Roxette, The Cardigans, Robyn and Lykke Li… did you look up to any artists in particular? Who would you say is your biggest influencer in the world of music?

A: First of all: yes, I think the music dream doesn’t feel so far away thanks to these amazing acts. We are super inspired by many artists, especially cool girls that have come out of Sweden and entered the international music scene.

A: We love Tove Lo and have listened to her music music for many years. I’m quite sure that you could hear that when listening to our songs. Other than that, we listen and get inspired by Robyn, Lykke Li, Icona Pop, ABBA, Say Lou Lou, Tove Styrke, yeah just to mention some of them.

Q: How would you best describe your sound? It says on your webpage, “Swedish pop duet” but I’m hearing bands that don’t fit into that one niche, very versatile in their sound.

A: It’s always tricky to categorize music, just as you say. The easy answer is that we’re making pop music, but we love the sounds of synthesizers, so often our music ends up more electronic than the generic pop music sound, we would say.

A: Also, we love to mix different styles. To have some songs that are more electronic and others that are niches into acoustic sounds like guitars. We love guitars and everything about them. I guess you could say that guitar was the instrument that put us together. We wanted to play all Taylor Swift songs on our acoustic guitars or actually we wanted to be Taylor Swift, both of us.

Q: Do you think you will release an album or EP this year?

A: That is the plan, yes. We are constantly creating music, but we have got a lot more time for that this year when we haven’t had the opportunity to go out on tour.

A: But we are also very spontaneous. You never know how everything turns out to be, even though we would like to be more planned and organized. But we have many songs that we want to share, so absolutely, more music will come very soon.

Isle of You

Q: Where can fans find your music?

A: Everywhere, we would say! We release our music on all platforms but most people listen to Spotify here in the North!

Thank you Ida and Elina for the interview. I feel great things for you are coming up on the horizon.. in case you want to check out their music, look for them on Instagram at isle_of_you.

Summer is very busy for me but I will have some interviews coming up with Great Good Fine Ok, Jack Downey, Roanoke and many more..

Until next time, I’m Your Music Stylist.

On the road to Germany

Long story short, I heard Martis’ song, Keep it Low one day while I was at work and I pretty much hummed along to the song all day much to the dismay of my coworkers.. However, they were also humming it by the end of the day as well. It’s very catchy… so I asked him for a chat..

Q: So Martis, you are from Cologne, Germany?

A: I live close to Cologne and always say Cologne because this is the city that is most known beside Munich and Berlin.

Q: When did you first start creating music?

A: I’ve been making music since I was little and as long as I can remember. I wrote tunes and at the very beginning, I wouldn’t call them songs because I was too young to understand how song structures work.

Q: Have you always wanted to be a musician?

A: To be honest….100% YES!!! As a kid, I was a huge Michael Jackson fan and always wanted to become a musician since then. I’ve dreamed about performing in front of a big audience. But the funny part is, that I was a instrumentalist who didn’t know that I will become a singer one day.

Q: How did you feel when Universal Music offered you a contract? Was it a dream come true?

A: This was a magical moment! All the hard work, all the effort I put into it, gets paid off with a major international contract with Universal! I remember how strange it was, because a lot of record companies wanted me to sign me because of the song, “Keep it Low”.

Superhero by Martis

Q: Let’s talk pre 2021…About a year before Keep It Low was released, your single, Superhero, came out…the lyrics, “You’re like a superhero, always ahead of me, you taught me many lessons, you don’t even see.” Is this song about someone close to you? Tell me more about the story behind the song.

A: I wrote this song with two other people in a Sony ATV song session. The lyrics relate to someone close to me. The line you picked is a really strong one to me! It means, that the person never gave up, no matter how bad the situation was and this person never complained about it. That’s how I got shown how to handle a bad situation and I finally became a better “me”.

KEEP IT LOW BY MARTIS courtesy of YouTube (Official Video)

Q: Fast forward to now…Keep it Low is such a catchy song…(when it was playing in the office, everyone was whistling along). Is this a breakup song or more of a love song?

A: Haha, you cannot imagine, how you made my day with that sentence!! I looove when people whistle or wag to this song! When they post little vids in their stories! This always makes me smile! I’d call it more if a motivation song!!

Q: Will you be playing any festivals this summer? Touring Europe or the US?

A: Because of the pandemic, everything was canceled for me! Currently, we’re in talks about a few shows this year but the slots are very rare. The US have only just started the promotion for Keep it Low..I guess the “play live” will come back in 2022. If it’s 2021, you can see it on my Instagram.

Q: When can fans expect to see an EP or album released?

A: Currently I’m working on a single.. After the next single, we plan to release an album.

Q: Where can fans find your music?

A: Besides Spotify, Deezer and Apple Music, you can listen to them on Amazon Music, Napster and close to every known digital platform that streams music… to make it easy, fly by on my webpage at http://www.martismusic.com and click one of the many icons to find my songs.

Awesome, thanks so much for the great interview!! You can also follow Martis on Instagram at martismusic.

I just want to give all the artists that have agreed to be interviewed by me a shout out to being so accommodating & all of you are so incredibly talented.. you will always have my support..

Stay tuned for interviews with Jack Downey, Roanoke and many more..

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist..

Bright Morning Star

La Vie En Rose by Emily Watts courtesy of YouTube (not the official video)

I first heard the cover of this on Spotify, where I generally find all my new music but I was struck by how different it sounded to the last time I had heard a version of this song in the film, A Star Is Born (2017) sung by Lady Gaga. I had to find more about this bright 20 year old singer named Emily Watts.

Q: Have you always had a strong passion for songwriting? Can you remember the first song you wrote? Age? What was the song about?

A: I have always loved poetry and songwriting. My first song ever was about eating spaghetti with my family!! Which makes me giggle! I was about 7 years old when I wrote that!!

Q: You are from Arizona…if I were to visit for the first time and you were my tour guide, what would you suggest for me to do, eat, stay, sleep?

A: I am actually from California! I was born there and lived there until I was 11! I would suggest staying in Gilbert, Arizona.. Grab some Raising Cane’s or if you like brunch First Watch! And there are all sorts of places to visit!

Q: You actually released a cover of La Vie En Rose in 2019, which now I believe has been streamed over 6M times…were you hesitant about performing such a classic song considering not too long ago, Lady Gaga, just released this for A Star is Born. Have you always loved this song?

A: I actually originally performed this song a few times before Lady Gaga. And when I heard her version I was definitely intimidated because LG is sooo talented and I grew up listening to her! I do love classics though, and my vocal coach believed it would be a perfect song for my voice. I loved performing this song and the simplicity of it.

Counter clockwise: Ariana Grande, Billie Eilish and Adele

Q: Who are some of your musical influences?

A: Easy! Ariana Grande, Billie Eilish and Adele.

Small theaters like Jalopy Theater, Brooklyn NY

Q: Now that COVID restrictions have been easing across the country, do you have any plans on doing a small US club tour? Or more touring locally?

A: My manager is working on planning a concert in Arizona sometime in the future! I have many projects in the works!

Q: What does your family mean to you in terms of supporting you and your music?

A: My family is my rock. I love them so much. They have supported me through it all and are so proud of me and my decision to pursue my career.

Q: If there was a regulation that was introduced into the US that you had to choose 1 social media platform that you could keep and the rest you had to stop using? What would it be and why?

A: It would be Instagram because its more personal and I can keep up with my fans! I answer everyone’s DM’s! I try to!

Q: Do you have plans to release any more music this year & where can fans find your music?

A: I am releasing an EP this year and before that a new cover will drop the same day as my music video for La Vie En Rose.

Well, I’ll be looking forward to that EP and the video.. you can find more of Emily Watts on emailywattsmusic.com and can follow her on Instagram: emwatts101.

Be sure to follow my blog at yourmusicstylist.org and stayed tuned for more interviews with incredibly talented Jack Downey, Roanoke, MARTIS and much more.

Until then, I’m Your Music Stylist.