Artist Spotlight: Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze

We recently had the pleasure of getting to know the insanely innovative and undeniably refreshing country-rockers Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

These on-the-rise, North Carolina-based country artists have been steadily gaining notoriety and acclaim since the release of their debut Single entitled “Don’t Quit Your Day Job”. Now, the band has released their highly anticipated follow up entitled “Just a Matter of Time” to mass critical acclaim and universal praise from music-lovers of all genres. The band is relatively new to the scene, with guitarist/percussionist Tom Foley and pianist/keyboardist Ralph Merigliano forming the band in 2016. From there, the band has grown into a remarkable 10-piece act, with each member adding a unique, yet necessary flavor to their musical country stew. The band’s vocal talents are handled by Hal Stroud, Amanda Cross, Melissa Race, and  Matt Newton. The band’s lively instrumental sections are handled by founders Tom Foley & Ralph Merigliano (guitars, percussion, piano, and keyboards), Adam McOwen on the fiddle and mandolin, Greg Holt on the fiddle, Nelson McPherson on the bass, and Paul SantaCroce on the drums. Each member brings something special to the table from their differing musical backgrounds, and although each member comes from different places in the US, they have effectively united under the Carolina Creek banner with the simple mission statement of “delivering good music to music lovers— from music lovers”. For now, the band has settled in New York City and largely operate from there.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

With independent recording continually growing more affordable and accessible than it ever has been; the industry is quickly becoming over-saturated with hobbyists and fame-seekers. Due to this, it is becoming ever-harder to be noticed within the endless sea of independent noise. The number of new artists entering the industry every day is growing exponentially. With this increase in industry competition, you’d think there would be a “standard” for things you shouldn’t do if you’re trying to become noticed and successful. Unfortunately, this is not the case…in fact, it seems that a vast majority of new artists have taken the lazy route —- copy those whom are more successful than you. You would think that this competitive environment would inspire some artists to go against the grain and carve out their own identity, but this is too often not the case.

Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are an incredible exception to this rule and are quickly emerging as a country-infused sensation.

Listen to their immersive debut Single “Don’t Quit Your Day Job”: 

The band’s approach to the country genre is refreshing, fun, and fascinating, while their music remains curiously relatable and hard hitting. Highly inspired vocals shine through dynamic guitar-work, impressive fiddle-playing, rich mandolin, stylistic piano, and a wildly groovy rhythm section. The seamless blending of each member’s distinctive and alluring style makes for a diverse and wonderfully unpredictable musical experience. While the band is no doubt rooted deeply in the classic country genre, their overall sound is an amazingly varied fusion of southern rock, country pop, and 60’s & 70’s country; all while adding an entirely unique self-defining twist.

This approach to music is especially refreshing in a world currently dominated by shallow Pop music. We, as listeners, are continuously exposed to these same formulaic, cookie-cutter, brand of artists. Although these types of artists have brilliantly perfected the ability to produce safe, catchy, and infectious music; they ultimately amount to being entirely forgettable, soon to be replaced by the next musical doppelgänger. This trend has infected almost every musical appendage and genre, whether it be commercially produced or independently released. The most unfortunate result of this trend is the stifling of musical ambition and the lack of innovation to set oneself apart in the industry. This is mostly due to an unapologetic desire by most new-coming artists to shamelessly reach into existing successful markets, void of any integrity, and follow an incredibly safe musical formula of commercially appealing and catchy copy of a copy Singles.

While this approach may work well if your goal as an artist is to make fast cash, albeit becoming forgettable, it certainly isn’t the winning formula for industry longevity and lasting notoriety.

Luckily, Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are fiercely rebelling against this trend, carving out their own distinct musical identity, and restoring the faith of music lovers everywhere.

The band is quickly proving that with their addictive, unique, and highly engaging tunes; music, as an artistic medium, can transcend the label of “commodity”, and become something much deeper, more intimate, and immersive. On the surface, each track feels as if it were crafted by country music veterans— for country music veterans, easily appealing to dedicated fans of the genre. As you dig a little deeper, there is an almost undefinable quality to each track that oozes appeal far outside of the boundaries of the country genre. This is probably the band’s greatest asset. Their remarkable versatility and indisputable chemistry appeals to the music lover in all of us. Unlike many artists within the genre, the band haven’t limited their appeal to just country music fans. Their differing backgrounds have blended almost perfectly to deliver a final product that exudes integrity, life, and energy. There is definitely something for everybody within their growing catalog.

Hear for yourself: http://www.carolinacreek.us/the-music-from-the-band-carolina-creek-and-the-backroad-breeze.html

Much like its predecessor, the audio production exhibited in the freshly released Single “Just a Matter of Time“ is nothing short of spectacular. This is especially noteworthy considering the music itself is ferociously dynamic and unrestrained. Each instrumental track is uniquely stunning, with each complex sonic layer given space to breath and evolve. The track is fantastically sequenced in a way that maintains the listener’s interest, and contains minor mixing and instrumental intricacies that are both unique and add undeniable character to the track. Carolina Creek consistently surprise and impress with their enormous vocal prowess and the band collectively display a strong command of infectious vocal melodies and lush harmonies. With the powerful and effective backing of guitar, mandolin, fiddle, bass, and driving percussion; the band proves that their vocal prowess is simply one example of their many strong assets. The vocal performance is authentic and invokes a strong emotional response with their thoughtful and emotive lyrics. 

Check out their newest hit “Just a Matter of Time”: 

Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are a remarkable act and an amazing breath of fresh air within an industry that has become overly saturated with copycat artists whose sole goal is to cash in on an increasingly uninventive formula. We can definitely see this band continuing their rise and becoming a household name, all while inspiring a new generation of independent artists. Not only do they have the impressive ability to craft infectious vocal hooks and melodies with outstanding pop-sensibility, but they does so with a remarkably unique blending of genres and evident care for messaging and content.  Carolina Creek and the Backroad Breeze are a MUST LISTEN! Stay tuned as the band wraps up filming the video for their  third Single “Momma”.

Be sure to follow/like/share the band on:

Official: http://www.carolinacreek.us/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CarolinaCreekBand/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6rZvrR24aGKEn4JwoyyKCw

 

Artist Spotlight: The Arborist

The acoustic-rock genre is one that can often feel uninspired and tired due to the lack of ambition and honesty applied in the songwriting stage.
It seems that most current releases within this genre follow the same safe set of rules, explore the same redundant themes, and revolve around the same familiar chord progressions.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

On-the-rise indie acoustic rock artist, The Arborist is a wonderful exception to this trend.

While exploring this brilliant artist’s catalog, I was immediately struck by his intimate and stripped down approach to delivering his music. This approach is extremely effective, as each performance feels very personal and makes you feel as if you’re sitting in the same room with the Arborist. The first original song I came across, entitled “Pendulum”, immediately stands out for its impressive acoustic guitar-work. The track begins with a complex, yet infectious acoustic guitar-riffing and opens with the hard hitting line, “I can feel the freezing winter breeze, I can feel a certain strange relief…” This serves as a brilliant entry point for the Arborist’s catalog; an emotive declaration of the need for change, overcoming feeling defeated, and thus exploring the unknown. The track is fantastically paced in a way that maintains the listener’s interest, and maintains an effective minimalist approach. The Arborist’s skillful guitar playing and songwriting prowess are on full display, while his vocal performance adds undeniable character and uniqueness to the track. 

In “Alive”, the Arborist really showcases his unique vocal style and displays a strong command of melody and control. With the subtle and effective backing of acoustic guitar, this artist proves that his voice is just another one of his many strong assets. His vocal performance is authentic and invokes a strong emotional response with his pained delivery of the clever line “My spirit starts to breathe the life…” This track certainly leaves the listener feeling a renewed sense of motivation and inspiration.

The delicate follow-up track “A New World” opens with a beautiful acoustic guitar progression. The track progresses by falling back and forth between melodic and calm sections, and beautifully dynamic sections. This track brilliantly displays the Arborist’s undeniable songwriting and arranging abilities. Much like his other tracks, this artist has an incredible ability to draw each listener into his song’s narrative and make them feel as if the song was written specifically for them.

The final original track in the Arborist’s catalog is a deeply powerful and resonating composition that serves a tribute to his family whom suffered from a personal tragedy. While the track is fairly short, it packs a lot of punch and makes me really interested to hear what a fully fleshed-out album from the Arborist would sound like. The track reminds me of Pink Floyd’s “Echoes”, with the Arborist effectively carving out his own unique identity, while paying homage to his influences. 

Listening through the Arborist’s current catalog was truly an engaging and worthwhile experience. Lyrically, each song is highly personal and oozes integrity, honesty, and emotional awareness. Each track is also to perfection, definitely leaving the listener wanting more. We are eagerly awaiting what he does next!

We highly recommend that you check out the Arborist, this is an artist you simply shouldn’t miss!

Be sure to support/like/follow the Arborist on:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thearborist.rock/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/the.arborist.music/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCEwKBykf2aDw2GO6GeipHyg

Artist Spotlight: Hooyoosay

There comes a time in everyone’s life when revisiting your musical comfort-zone for the umpteenth time just doesn’t cut it anymore. Maybe you’re an avid Pop-Rock fan who loves every familiar power chord progression and every hey-oh chorus. Eventually, a time will come when you just get tired of listening to the same repetitive riffs and uninventive melodies over and over again. This is when you need to step outside of the familiar and leave that musical comfort-zone behind. You simply need to expand your musical horizons explore new artists. For those whom are willing to step outside of that comfort-zone, I highly recommend that you turn to the “Mountain Air” EP by the refreshingly unpredictable multi-genre music recording project hooyoosay.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

Hooyoosay has been making waves in the indie music scene for their incredibly unique and alluring brand of music. It is an unfortunate reality in the current world of music where It seems as though fearless, ambitious artists are becoming more and more rare and undiscovered. This is mostly due to an unapologetic desire by most new-coming artists to shamelessly reach into existing successful markets, void of any integrity, and follow an incredibly safe musical formula of commercially appealing and catchy tunes. Powerful messaging and honest content in music has been sadly lost due to this trend; it is growing more and more apparent that the main driving force  behind many new “artists” entering the industry is simply a thirst for fame and money.

Hooyoosay makes no attempt to conform to these market tastes and trends— and this is precisely what makes them such a respectable and remarkable project.

hooyoosay is best described as a music recording project rather than a band, as they invite a variety of unnamed and frequently changing collaborators to participate in their creations. Due to this unique approach to songwriting, the result is a delightful and alluringly wide diversity in styles. This brilliant approach acts as a marvelous display innovation in the indie-world, and each unique contributor effectively channels their deep, emotive, and resonating vision through an impressive display of creative songwriting and inventive musical arrangements. With their provocative, fun, and highly unorthodox tunes; Hooyoosay has reignited the approach that music, as an artistic medium, should transcend the label of “commodity” and become something much more immersive and engaging. These artists are unapologetically committed to supporting their shared vision with their tools of artistic expression, rather than exploiting them for the cash-grabbing gimmick that they can so easily become.

Hooyoosay, in my honest opinion, has the potential to go down as one of those rare concepts whom helped change the musical landscape, and will fondly remembered among some of the most groundbreaking independent projects.

Hooyoosay recently unleashed their fifth musical-outing entitled “Mountain Air”. In this release, the group revisits their dedication to featuring a different artist collaboration in each of its 4 tracks—- to much success. “Mountain Air” is definitely one of those increasingly rare transcendent albums that doesn’t abide by the typical genre limitations and standards. Regardless of your specific musical tastes, regardless of any bias or animosity that you may have against the more experimental genres; the sheer uniqueness and thoughtfulness of the songwriting within this album will inspire and ignite applause and appreciation out of even the most reluctant listeners. The EP is comprised of a large fraction of remarkably accessible, fun, and uplifting indie tunes with a refreshingly odd approach and wonderfully varied sound. It is a tireless listening experience and effortlessly maintains your interest throughout. Perhaps the best quality of the music is the almost frustrating inability to perfectly label and define it. It often makes your head spin— and I think that is the sheer brilliance of it.

Opening track “Mountain Air” particularly stands out upon first listen. The sonic landscape crafted within this track alone fully encapsulates the dynamic nature of the album as a whole. The track showcases a swaying fusion of sound that effectively combines elements of soft rock,  synth pop, roots rock, and indie pop.

Check out “Mountain Air”: 

“My Lucky Dream Day” stands out as an immediate favorite of mine. The track is very vibrant and joyful sounding, and it maintains its own identity perfectly.  Following songs like “Done our Best” and “Mountain View” are full-bodied compositions that again embrace a feel-good and fun sound. They further maintain the project’s dedication to keeping it relatively danceable and light-hearted, resulting in something quirky and fresh. The genre as a whole is brilliantly undefinable and ever-evolving, with Hooyoosay sculpting their own self-defining sound and style. There is definitely something for everyone here. Each track featured on the album is fantastically sequenced in a way that maintains the listener’s interest, and contains minor mixing and instrumental intricacies that are both unique and add undeniable character to the track.

Listen to “My Lucky Dream Day”: 

Hooyoosay are a remarkable act and an amazing breath of fresh air within an industry that has become overly saturated with copycat artists whose sole goal is to cash in on an increasingly uninventive formula. We can definitely see this project continuing their rise and becoming a household name, while inspiring a new generation of independent artists. Not only do they have the ability to craft infectious vocal hooks and melodies, but they does so with a remarkably unique blending of genres and evident care for messaging and content. “Mountain Air” is a MUST LISTEN!

Be sure to stream/purchase the EP here: http://hooyoosay.bandcamp.com/album/mountain-air-ep

Also be sure to support/like/follow Hooyoosay on:

Official: https://hooyoosay.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hooyoosay/201239069949729

Twitter: https://twitter.com/hooyoosay

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/hooyoosay 

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/mountain-air-ep/id1219771576

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/6nMFgiooOrXWebNOyGT92c

Indie Interview Series

We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with DJ, artist, and producer Michael Fall to learn a little more about what makes his wheels turn.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

I love how you manage to render your tracks so personal and organic. Does the melody come first, or do you focus on the beat the most?

Answer: Well, I always have a sort of melody in my head which I try to make in my DAW or play on the keyboard. Off course I set up first the bassline & tempo than I start to implant the main melody based on my melody idea, than I choose sounds & chords. I’ll search & create the best drop, and later I change the sounds on the melody and the track and I try to find a good singer. After that I change a lot until satisfied. But sometimes I start with the drums. Once the melodic elements are in place, I continue developing the drums and the structure around that. On another project I will start with a sample, sometimes I start with sound design. Each track is different and I don’t want that everything sounds the same

Do you perform live? If so, do you feel more comfortable on a stage or within the walls of the recording studio?

Answer: yes, I perform live with dj sets in my home country in clubs, party’s & festivals in Belgium. Also I played on some international gigs in Europe. I did a lot of gigs in the past. But I’m now focusing a lot on music productions, so I really need to set up my gigs again  But it’s a matter of time. Music productions takes a lot from your time.

If you could only pick one song to make a “first impression” on a new listener, which song would you pick and why?

Answer: I made a lot of songs in the past with all different genres, so that’s difficult to choose. I made progressive house, Edm in the past but now my focus is more in deephouse & vocalhouse for clubs & radio broadcast. I already released 2 albums with a lot of Belgian chart position material, so people can look me up and listen to my music. I had releases with Fatman scoop, Lumidee, Luca Debonaire, Nils Van Zandt, Charlie Atom,  Sunseekers and I had great releases such as ‘Turn on your radio’ ‘Go Deeper’ ‘Winter’ ‘la Bonita’ ‘Let Me go’ ‘Find a way’. My singles were included on so many cd compilations worldwide on great labels such as Universal, Blanco Y Negro, Zyx, Warner, EMI, Kontor, in so many different countries such Japan, Spain, Holland, Belgium, Poland, South-Africa, Germany and so on.

What does it take to be “innovative” in music?

Answer: Every time looking for new melodies, singers & try to make something different until you find the right sound. It’s quiet hard,  creating till you drop. I make so many ideas, melody’s, tracks, but maybe one out of 10 makes it as a release. I also listen to great artists & productions from producers how they do it. You totally need to follow the new trend and make your own twist. But I stay focused on my own sounds & ideas

Any upcoming release or tour your way?

Answer: My newest release ‘today’ is just out now and I’m looking forward how this track will do in the charts, beatport & radio airplay. It is released on leader Spanisch dance label ‘Blanco Y negro’. ‘Today’ a collaboration with Mexican Dj & Producer Charlie Atom & Brighton (UK) based Singer Emma Harrop and music promotion is just start, so let’s hope for the best. The brand new single ‘Today’ is the follow single up from our last year released success track called ‘winter’ vocals by ‘Joe Bateman.’ Also I have a few tracks coming up later this year.

Anywhere online where curious fans can listen to your music and find out more about you?

Answer: yeah, off course! Go check my Soundcloud, youtube channel or like me on facebook! Thanks for the interview!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Fall

www.michaelfall.be

or follow me on Spotify!

Check out Fall’s new collaborative Single “Today” with Charlie Atom, also featuring Emma Harrop: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zmGzVpDDX1Y

Indie Interview Series: YUNGSASUKEWITHtheBLADE

We recently had the opportunity to sit with the incredibly ambitious and insanely innovative singer/songwriter/rapper YUNGSASUKEWITHtheBLADE.

Yungsasukewiththeblade (or Sasuke for short) is quickly turning heads and earning praise in the Hip Hop/ Rap scene with his unique take on the genre. We were first introduced to Sasuke’s music through his newly released three-song conceptual playlist. We were so intrigued by the creativity and integrity showcased within the tracks, that we just had to learn more about this on-the-rise artist. 

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

I love how you manage to render your tracks so personal and immersive. Does the melody come first, or do you focus on the beat the most?

Answer: When producers send me beats I almost always listen first and hum or mumble some sort of melody or rhythm to get an idea of the flow I am going to use.

 

Do you perform live? If so, do you feel more comfortable on a stage or within the walls of the recording studio?

Answer: I actually have a few shows coming up, but honestly, I love the studio. It’s like a creative space that I get totally lost in.

 

If you could only pick one song to make a “first impression” on a new listener, which song would you pick and why?

Answer: I would choose either my biggest song, “wash”, or”yung”. Both songs were like definitive tracks. Before that, I wouldn’t even to much of the music I would release. Now, I bump all of my songs in the car. I also feel that most of my fans will feel the message behind both. “wash” is a personal cleanse, where I stopped making music for awhile to figure out just who I was when my past wasn’t looming over me. “yung”on the other hand, is a song dedicated to being young  and all of the trouble that came with for me.

 

What does it take to be “innovative” in music?

Answer: Inovation to me is being yourself at all times. I went through a rough patch where I thought “I have to be the next Drake, Chance, or Kendrick.” Now I just am the best version of me I can be. My music is more personal and it has it’s own flavor. Instead of focusing on just one genre, I try to be as diverse as possible, which I feel will show on the two songs I have yet to release to complete my “wash.rinse.repeat” playlist. Those three songs are diverse. Innovate by showing people what you are capable of, not by what you can imitate.

 

Any upcoming release or tour your way?

Answer: I have a huge list of singles coming. First, I am dropping “rinse” and “repeat”, which will finish my three song playlist. Those will drop within the next few days. Afterwards I have like a month of releases planned out, including “love me because i can’t love myself”, “Master Roshi”,  “Yessica’s Lullaby”,  “mariana don’t cry for me”, and “Hennessy in C Minor”.

 

Anywhere online where curious fans can listen to your music and find out more about you?

Answer: Be sure to watch for updates and new exclusive tracks on:

Soundcloud- https://soundcloud.com/yungsasukewiththeblade

Instagram- @yungsasukewiththeblade

Twitter – @sasukegotblades

Facebook- https://m.facebook.com/yungsasukewiththeblade

Sasuke is definitely one of those increasingly rare transcendent artists that doesn’t abide by the typical genre limitations and standards. Regardless of your specific musical tastes, regardless of any bias or animosity that you may have against the hip-hop or rap genres; the sheer uniqueness and thoughtfulness of Sasuke’s debut tracklist will inspire and ignite applause and appreciation out of even the most reluctant listeners. We highly recommend you check this artist out!

 

Indie Interview Series: Lee N. Sage

We recently had the opportunity to sit down with on-the-rise indie-acoustic sensation Lee N. Sage.

Bobby LeSage is based in Detroit, Michigan and has been steadily gaining exposure and increased visibility for his incredibly unique take on the indie-acoustic genre. We were first introduced to this artist through his infectious new self-titled EP. 

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

Check out the brilliant intro track here: 

We were so impressed by the creativity and confidence showcased on the new EP, that we wanted had to learn more about this stellar artist. Lee N. Sage was kind enough to take the time to answer some of our questions.

 


I love how you manage to render your tracks so personal and immersive. Does the melody come first, or do you focus on the beat the most?

Lee N. Sage: For the most part, in terms of structure, I prefer taking the approach of coming up with the rhythm/beat before anything else. Trying to get the basic skeleton of the song down first, as far as the verse(s), pre-chorus, chorus and bridge go. Once I figure out the instrumental portion of the song, the melody for the vocals usually comes together organically and then I’ll start writing lyrics, coming up with a story. Although as we all know music is interpretive, so if an idea or type of inspirational flow strikes for any part of a song I’m working on, I’ll simply run with it. 

 

Do you perform live? If so, do you feel more comfortable on a stage or within the walls of the recording studio?

Lee N. Sage: Absolutely – anytime an opportunity presents itself, I’m all over it. There’s no better high than being up there and performing in front of people. I mean, nerves are always going to be there, but that simply means you’re ready and well prepared. Not to mention this is the first time I’ve gone off on my own as a musician, so it’s all a bit new still. But, regardless the studio atmosphere is always more comfortable, getting lost in the recording process is beyond relaxing, time becomes irrelevant.

 

If you could only pick one song to make a “first impression” on a new listener, which song would you pick and why?

Lee N. Sage: This is a hard question, because perception is everything. How I view these songs in terms of rank and order, are vastly different than other people I’ve talked to the last few months that’ve listened to my music. But, I’d pick “Pastures”.  To me it has that complete warm feeling to it, layered with it’s own story of where I was and doing at that point in time.

Check out “Pastures”: 

What does it take to be “innovative” in music?

Lee N. Sage: Don’t pay attention to what other people are writing, focus on your own sound, let your influences come in to play. Being original as possible of course is always the goal, but don’t force it. Don’t “work on it”, let things happen naturally. If you’re consistently playing and honing your craft the songs will inevitably come. The moment you start to try, is the moment you strain your creativity and in turn trap yourself.

 

Any upcoming release or tour your way?

Lee N. Sage: Yes, indeed. I’m working on my second E.P. now and hope to get that finished as soon as possible, perhaps by early next year. For now, playing more shows as much as I’m able. A tour would be nice though!

 

Anywhere online where curious fans can listen to your music and find out more about you?

Lee N. Sage: Yup, you can find all my music streaming on Spotify, Pandora, Apple Music, Tidal, Amazon, Soundcloud, bandcamp, Deezer, etc. I’m also on Twitter (@leensage) and Facebook (@leensagemusic). Connect with me!

Thank you again for the interview, this was awesome! Appreciate you folks more than you can fathom.

 


 

Lee N. Sage a remarkable act and an amazing breath of fresh air within an industry that has become overly saturated with copycat artists whose sole goal is to cash in on an increasingly uninventive formula. We can definitely see this artist continuing his rise and becoming a household name, while inspiring a new generation of independent artists. Sage’s self-titled EP is a MUST LISTEN!

Be sure to support/like/follow Lee N. Sage on:

Facebook: facebook.com/leensagemusic

Twitter: twitter.com/leensage

Pandora: pandora.com/lee-n-sage/lee-n-sage-ep

iTunes: itunes.apple.com/us/album/lee-n.-sage-ep/id1166746626  

Spotify: play.spotify.com/album/3n4xtQXLooQXEHjvHHosuK?play=true&utm_source=open.spotify.com&utm_medium=open

Indie Interview Series: Seth Hilary Jackson

Seth Hilary Jackson recently released his outstanding debut album entitled “This One’s For You”. The album showcases a sound that is refreshing and passionate, while the content of the music remains entirely relatable and hard hitting. Versatile vocals shine through alluring acoustic guitar-work, masterful lead electric guitar, while a wildly groovy rhythm section adds undeniable character to each track. This makes for a wildly diverse and lively musical experience. The artist not only acts as a unique innovator; but he also effectively channels his deep, emotive, and resonating vision through an impressive command of the country, folk, pop, rock, and alternative genres. To be more precise, Seth’s overall sound is an amazingly varied fusion of these aforementioned genres.  Each song covers a range of topics from silly love songs to songs about personal struggles and social/political issues. Read our full review here. 

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

Check out “Broken Promised Land”: 

We were so impressed by the creativity and thoughtfulness showcased within his newest album, that we just had to learn more about this incredible artist. Seth was kind enough to take the time to answer some of our questions.

 


 

I love how you manage to render your tracks so personal and immersive. Does the melody come first, or do you focus on the beat the most?

 

SHJ: The process varies for each song. I usually start with a concept of what I want to write about, and from there, I come up with a title. Sometimes the melodic hook comes next and then the lyric. Other times, I go right to the lyric before writing the music.  It’s not that black-and-white, though, because while I’m writing a lyric, I have a meter in mind that eventually becomes part of the music. I more or less write the melody, chords, and rhythm all together.

 

Do you perform live? If so, do you feel more comfortable on a stage or within the walls of the recording studio?

SHJ: I love to play live even though I’m not the most polished performer. A lot of my performances have been at songwriter nights where the main focus is on the song itself. That creates a fun, relaxed environment. If I happen to make a mistake, nobody cares. That allows me a lot of freedom to express myself. The studio is harder because I have to try to get it as perfect as possible while still keeping the emotion. It can take a while.

 

If you could only pick one song to make a “first impression” on a new listener, which song would you pick and why?

SHJ: That’s always a hard question. Sometimes, I’ll be at a writers’ night where I only get to perform 3 songs. I’ll spend time agonizing over which 3 to pick. The same thing happens when I pitch songs to music industry people. A lot of times they’ll say, “Let me hear your best 3 songs.” I don’t know what my best 3 songs are. It varies depending on my mood and who I’m pitching to. As an artist, my style is eclectic and covers a wide range from country love songs, political songs, alternative rock, and novelty songs that makes people laugh. Depending on my mood and the audience, I might either pick, “Broken Promise Land”, “This One’s For You”, or “If Love Had a Butt”.

 

 

What does it take to be “innovative” in music?

SHJ: I usually don’t think in those terms while I’m writing for myself as an artist, I just write what I feel like writing.  It’s different from when I’m writing commercial songs to pitch to other artists. That kind of writing requires paying attention to commercial trends. If possible, you try to anticipate the trend to keep just slightly ahead of the curve. It’s a tough thing to do. Writing for myself is liberating. Innovativeness just happens because I’m not trying to fit into a particular style. I’m just being me.

 

 

Any upcoming release or tour your way?

SHJ: I just released my first album, “This One’s For You. I haven’t even begun to think about the next one. I’d love do a tour, although I have a lot to learn about putting one together. It would help to have a booking agent.

 

 

Anywhere online where curious fans can listen to your music and find out more about you?

SHJ: The best place to go for information about me is my official website, www.sethhilaryjackson.com. My music is also available on Spotify, Amazon, iTunes, and the other usual suspects. You can also find me on Twitter (@songdude), ReverbNation (sethhilaryjackson), and Facebook (sethhilaryjackson). I’d love to have you connect with me!

I’m honored that you chose to interview me, and I really appreciate it. Thank you!



“This One’s For You” oozes with integrity, musical ambition, and fearless creativity. This release is definitely a trend-setter and sets an unbelievably high standard for artists hoping to break through into the scene. We thank Mr. Jackson for his time and thoughtful responses. 

We highly recommend you check out this album. We rate it a MUST LISTEN!

Please support/like/share Seth Hilary Jackson on:

Official Website: www.sethhilaryjackson.com New album “This One’s For You” can be found here.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sethhilaryjackson/

ReverbNation: https://www.reverbnation.com/sethhilary

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdKIXY9VoKtj630iGgzv_Zg

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2kf11pfCLLGdclCZj76Kvs

Artist Spotlight: YUNG Chakra Indigo (Cleatis)

With independent recording continually growing more affordable and accessible than it ever has been; the industry is quickly becoming over-saturated with hobbyists and crowded with wannabes. Due to this, it is becoming ever-harder to be noticed within the endless sea of independent noise. The number of new hip-hop artists entering the industry every day is growing exponentially.

With this increase in industry competition, you’d think there would be a “standard” for things you shouldn’t do if you’re trying to become noticed and successful. Unfortunately, this is not the case…in fact, it seems that a vast majority of new artists have taken the lazy route — copy those whom are more successful than you.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

YUNG Chakra Indigo (Cleatis for short) has fiercely rebelled against this current trend; creating something innovative and unique, yet entirely approachable and digestible.

We recently had the pleasure of getting to know this incredibly ambitious new artist, and we were beyond impressed. Recently, it seems like every new rapper we meet describes themselves similarly. It usually goes something like, “I want to be the next Kanye/Drake/Lamar…” This sentiment is then often uncomfortably showcased in their music as a shameless imitation of their heroes.

It is completely natural to become inspired by your industry forerunners, but you must stray away from riding on their coattails by replicating their distinct sound and style. This is precisely what Cleatis naturally does so well. Upon discovering Cleatis, we were immediately struck by what may be his strongest asset: his courage to be entirely unapologetic in his assertion of his own unique identity. This shines radiantly in his first official track entitled “Might Don’t Make it”.

Listen to “Might Don’t Make it” here: 

Not only has Cleatis recognized the same tired trend in the music industry, but he has made it a point to aggressively rebel against it. One of the first characteristics that we noticed in Cleatis’s tracksthat immediately set him apart was his willingness to be vulnerable and honest. Too often, rappers feel the need to push a familiar facade (which at this point, has become a parody of itself), or they mistake humbleness for weakness. Cleatis does neither, he has embraced his own personal identity and has made no apologies for it.

This approach to songwriting naturally injects his music with integrity and honesty. His confidence in his own story, as well as his embrace of his own style allows his music to outshine the rest within the genre. His vulnerability in his songwriting makes it much more organic for the listener to connect with his songs on a personal level. These are qualities that are severely lacking within the current industry, and impressively, Cleatis has already figured it out as a relatively new artist on the scene.

With the newly released three-song EP “Potions”; Cleatis has already shown us his alluring versatility as an artist. This is even more remarkable given the fact that he has taken on the undeniable challenge of being a fully independent artist. We find that one of the most glaring setbacks for new-coming independent artists is the lack of professional mixing and mastering that is necessary to break through into the mainstream markets. This certainly isn’t the case with Cleatis. He has shown exceptional judgment in whom he chooses to work with. The production-work featured on each one of his tracks showcases an entirely unique style and technique.

It is rare that we are introduced to an independent artist that absolutely blows our minds; more so, upon their first fully-realized release. Cleatis is a refreshing exception. The audio production exhibited in the freshly released tracks is nothing short of spectacular, especially considering it is entirely independently produced. This is especially remarkable considering the beats themselves are incredibly dynamic and unrestrained. His flow is unstoppable, his delivery is inventive, and his style is undefinable. This is the type of artist that the industry desperately needs.

Listen to “Killlll” here: 

Cleatis is definitely one of those increasingly rare transcendent artists that doesn’t abide by the typical genre limitations and standards. Regardless of your specific musical tastes, regardless of any bias or animosity that you may have against the hip-hop or rap genres; the sheer uniqueness and thoughtfulness of Cleatis’s debut tracklist will inspire and ignite applause and appreciation out of even the most reluctant listeners.

Check out “Soon” here: 

It’s pretty damn refreshing to hear somebody so incredibly versatile and talented behind the mic (and so brilliantly selective with the production). Shying away from the typical clichés of both of the genres that he borrows inspiration from, Cleatis has a remarkably unique style and sound which he maintains throughout these early tracks. While Cleatis certainly pays homage to the greats; he frequently veers away the genre’s increasingly tired tendencies, making the listening experience feel entirely new and unpredictable.

This artist will almost certainly be taking the scene by storm!

Please be sure to like/share/follow Cleatis on:

Soundcloud Link: https://soundcloud.com/kaseem-gaines/sets/poison-ep

SongWhip Link: https://songwhip.com/artist/cleatis

Twitter: www.twitter.com/CleatisDaDude

Facebook: www.facebook.com/cleatisdadude

Email: kaseemgaines@gmail.com

Artist Spotlight: Deuce

It seems that every week we are introduced to the same regurgitated beat with the same lazy mumble-rap verses and auto-tune saturated hooks—- only to fizzle out into forgetfulness.

Deuce’s newest Single “Snapchat (feat. Rai P prod. by FM)” lands a devastating blow to this terrible trend, and in the aftermath, sets an incredible new standard for all new coming Hip Hip-inspired artists.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

Check out the FIRE Single here: 

This wildly versatile artist is based in Houston, Texas and recently linked up with well revered artist Rai P and Producer FM to put out yet another certified banger! We find that one of the most glaring setbacks for new-coming independent artists is the lack of professional mixing and mastering that is necessary to break through into the mainstream markets. This certainly isn’t the case with Deuce.

The audio production exhibited in the freshly released “Snapchat” is nothing short of spectacular. This is especially remarkable considering the music itself is ferociously dynamic and unrestrained; we imagine this must have been very challenging to mix. The soundscapes are masterfully complex and unrelenting, the pointed raps and melodic hook sections are intertwined perfectly with each evolving and ever-changing layer

This is truly a milestone and an accomplishment for this artist. When approaching newly released music, it’s hard to do so without inherent criticism. It has become tiresome and mundane within the current culture of Pop dominated music. We, as listeners, are exposed to the same formulaic, cookie-cutter, copy of a copy of a copy brand of artists. Though these types of artists have brilliantly perfected the ability to produce safe, catchy, and infectious music; they ultimately amount to being entirely forgettable— certain to be replaced by the next musical clone.

The FIRE track is the perfect mood-setter. The track begins immediately with a sort of lush pad and dialogue opening up to a perfectly crafted beat. The hard hitting, unapologetic vocals enter immediately carrying venom and exuding confidence. The track is fantastically sequenced in a way that maintains the listener’s interest, with each layer capturing its own space, but never distracting from each other. Deuce’s skillful production choice with FM and songwriting prowess are on full display here.

Deuce’s “Snapchat (feat. Rai P prod. by FM)” is a refreshingly unpredictable experience from beginning to end. This track oozes venom, musical ambition, and fearless creativity. Not only is it polished and meticulously crafted, but it is sequenced to perfection, leaving the listener wanting more. This release is definitely a trend-setter and sets an unbelievably high standard for indie artists hoping to break through in the scene.

The undefinable, unrelenting, ever-evolving Deuce is almost guaranteed to continue his steady rise to prominence with the release of this brilliantly undefinable, yet insanely track.

Be sure to check out his other tracks here: https://soundcloud.com/htownbeast 

Deuce is simply an artist you CAN’T IGNORE! Be sure to support/like/share on:

Twitter: www.twitter.com/htownbeast

Facebook: www.facebook.com/htownbeast

SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/htownbeast/snapchat-ft-rai-p-prod-by-fm

Email: 713htownbeast@gmail.com

Artist Spotlight: Untitled Art

We recently had the pleasure of getting to know the insanely inventive Untitled Art through their new ground-breaking experimental Single entitled, “Philly To Long Branch (part 2)”.

Untitled Art – the on-the-rise composers, artists, and experimental music sensations (consisting of Dave Sempier and James Linton), in my honest opinion, will evolve as one of those innovators, whom I’d put amongst some of the most groundbreaking musical masterminds.

Check out other artist profiles: https://indiemusicindex.com

These brilliant artists not only act as unique innovators; but also effectively channels their deep, emotive, and resonating vision through an impressive command of the experimental genre. Supporting their shared vision with their tools of artistic expression, rather than exploiting them as the gimmick they could easily become; Untitled Art stands out among an overpopulated market as a fearless and honest act with a story to tell. This duo is inspired by an incredibly diverse range of artists within the EDM, alternative, dark wave, electronic, industrial, gothic, and new wave genres. With regard to their music, this duo has effectively unleashed their wide-spanning musical tastes and influences into a giant boiling caldron, seasoned with style and flair —  and much like a mad scientist, have stirred ferociously until what has emerged is unrecognizable — an infectious monstrosity of delicious sound.  

Check out “Philly To Long Branch (part 2)”: 

It is an unfortunate reality in the world of music, crafted by today’s generation; that it seems fearless, ambitious artists are becoming more and more rare and undiscovered. This is mostly due to an unapologetic desire by most new-coming artists to shamelessly reach into existing successful markets, void of any integrity, and follow an incredibly safe musical formula of commercially appealing and catchy copy of a copy of a copy Singles.

While this approach may work well if your goal as an artist is to make fast cash, albeit becoming forgettable, it certainly isn’t the winning formula for industry longevity and lasting notoriety.

In a refreshing twist, this undeniably fearless and sonically ambitious musical duo is rebelling against this trend and quickly emerging as an experimental sensation. Untitled Art is quickly proving that with their provocative, unique, and highly unorthodox tunes; music, as an artistic medium, can transcend the label of “commodity” and become something much more intimate and immersive.

Untitled Art‘s newest experimental Single “Cosmic Bipolar Nebula” is not simply a collection of electronica avant-garde pieces per se – certainly not in a strict or literal sense. Rather, it is comprised of a large fraction of remarkably accessible, percussive, and electronic/synth EDM pieces with an expansive, encompassing, and immersive sound. The track also features ornery, engulfing sonic barrages of rhythmic sensibility and infectious vocal work.

Check out the wild “A Fighter’s Heart (Part 2)” 

Impressively, Somewhere within these complex and fastidiously crafted tracks there’s a magnificent injection of anthemic, yet indescribable instrumental and vocal pieces and that conjure up dynamic range of feelings and emotions. The electronic textures featured within each track are lush, but not in the literal definition of the word; rather – in the very sound of the word. The sonic landscape crafted within their growing catalog showcases a fusion of sound that feels intimately roomy, well-balanced and evocative, with a great focus on gorgeously shaped backdrops that add a dark, refreshingly organic quality to their tracks. At times, momentarily focusing on minimalism, the sounds resonate, merge and surround the listener in a sort of sonic ecstasy. They expand and meander in a flowing fashion, and sweep you in much like the dragging waves washing on the shore of a dark beach; curiously, these textures are effectively peppered by small intricacies, experimental percussion, and infectious vocals.

Each sound within each track seems to memorably interfere in an oddly irregular, yet efficacious fashion. This first builds an almost perturbed monotony – a growing excitement and sense of anticipation for something to emerge which never fails to deliver.

Check out their cover of the Cure’s “Disintegration”: 

It is an extremely rare occurrence that we are introduced to an independent artist that absolutely blows our minds; Untitled Art has done just this.

The audio production exhibited in the released Singles are nothing short of spectacular. This is especially remarkable considering the music itself is ferociously dynamic and unrestrained; we imagine this must have been very challenging to mix. The soundscapes are masterfully complex and unrelenting, the experimental vocals are intertwined perfectly with each evolving and ever-changing layer

Each mix is absolutely stunning, with each complex sonic layer given space to breath and evolve. A truly arduous task for anyone defiantly accepting the challenge of being TRULY independent. This risk has undeniably paid off, as the tracks showcased here are alluringly fresh and entirely unique. The genre is brilliantly undefinable, with this duo sculpting their own self-defining soundscape and style.

Each new track is truly a milestone and an accomplishment for this artist. When approaching newly released music, it’s hard to do so without inherent criticism. It has become tiresome and mundane within the current culture of Pop dominated music. Though these types of artists have brilliantly perfected the ability to produce safe, catchy, and infectious music; they ultimately amount to being entirely forgettable— certain to be replaced by the next musical clone. This trend has infected almost every musical appendage and genre, whether it be commercially produced or independently released. The most unfortunate result of this trend is the stifling of musical ambition and the lack of innovation to set oneself apart in the industry.

While this approach may work well if your goal as an artist is to make fast cash, albeit becoming forgettable, it certainly isn’t the winning formula for industry longevity and lasting notoriety.

This is certainly NOT the case with the on-the-rise experimental sensation, Untitled Art.

With independent recording continually growing more affordable and accessible than it ever has been; the industry is quickly becoming over-saturated with hobbyists and fame-seekers. Due to this, it is becoming ever-harder to be noticed within the endless sea of independent noise. The number of new artists entering the industry every day is growing exponentially. With this increase in industry competition, you’d think there would be a “standard” for things you shouldn’t do if you’re trying to become noticed and successful. Unfortunately, this is not the case…in fact, it seems that a vast majority of new artists have taken the lazy route —- copy those whom are more successful than you. You would think that this competitive environment would inspire some artists to go against the grain and carve out their own identity, but this is too often not the case.

This is precisely what makes Untitled Art such remarkable and respectable artists.

Listening to Untitled Art’s back-catalog was truly an engaging and refreshingly unpredictable experience from beginning to end. Each track oozes independent integrity, musical ambition, and fearless creativity. Not only are they polished and meticulously crafted, but they are sequenced to perfection, leaving the listener wanting more. These releases are definitely trend-setters and set an unbelievably high standard for indie artists hoping to break through in the scene. The undefinable, unrelenting, ever-evolving Untitled Art is almost guaranteed to continue their steady rise to prominence with the release of this brilliantly undefinable, yet insanely addictive album.

Be sure to keep an eye on the duo as they prepare the release of their upcoming album “13”

Please support/share/like/follow Untitled Art on:

Bandcamp :: https://untitledart.bandcamp.com/track/philly-to-long-branch-part-2

SoundCloud (track is downloadable here) :: 

https://m.soundcloud.com/untitled_art/philly-to-long-branch-part-2

Twitter :: @UntitledDave

YouTube :: https://m.youtube.com/watch?t=4s&v=zStjlOcw__0

fonds d'écran