In the first week of his new album release “Higher”, I caught up with recording artist Jesse Sarvinski to see what inspired the album and what makes him tick…
1 – What music did you grow up listening to?
My parents pretty much always had the radio dialed to the country station so that was kind of the foundation of my music listening but I was exposed to a lot. My older cousin kept up with the current stuff and listened to the pop station, I spent a lot of time with her so I listened to a lot of that too. Country is really good at telling stories, kind of letting the narrative unfold in a really cinematic way. Pop music is all about the hook, the chorus that really gets stuck in your head. Later in my early teens I got more into rock, reggae, and alternative, much of which was classified as grunge back then. The first few albums I owned were pretty random though. It was something like Ace of Base, No Doubt, Green Day, Real McCoy and Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill – which had a profound effect on me. I remember hearing “Hand In My Pocket” for the first time and immediately asking “WHO IS THIS?” She was a great storyteller. But even like Ace Of Base for example, the beats were so solid. The music just got into your bones and I really love that too. I grew up on everything and I still to this day listen to everything. If it’s a good song, it doesn’t matter to me which particular genre it belongs to.
2 – Who taught you to sing? What inspires you to write songs?
I don’t know if I was ever actually taught. It was just kind of like this “I want to sing so I’m going to” type of thing. My voice was shit when I first started out because I was primarily interested in getting my thoughts out and a lot of times there was no resemblance of a melody and it could have been so off key that it was painful but I just told myself, “Bob Dylan was off key. Johnny Cash was off key. Lots of people are off key.” I made it about what I was saying but never stopped trying to develop my voice. I remember a lot of people asking me “Have you ever thought about being a songwriter, like, JUST a songwriter?” And I would be like “No, I’ve never thought of being JUST that, but thank you.” I kind of knew that I was never gonna be the guy who was doing all these complicated runs with his voice and being some Luther Vandross character and I just accepted that. As I got older I started training my voice much more and working with a coach and it’s kind of like working out at the gym. You have to do it on the regular and if you do, it can only get better and better. I’m inspired by a lot of things, sometimes it can be that I’m out to dinner with friends and someone will say a phrase or a sentence and it will ring a bell in my head, and I think “that’s a really good idea for a song,” and then I’ll run with it. Sometimes it’s a real experience I’ve had, maybe let’s say with a relationship, and there are those things that I think but that I really don’t necessarily want to say to that particular lover so I write about it. Or maybe it’s just a heightened take on an emotion that I’m feeling for one night. It’s always just a snapshot. That’s the great thing about a song. It’s not forever. Like just because I may write something that’s on the melancholy side, doesn’t mean I’m a melancholy person in general but in that moment I was feeling melancholy so I wrote about it. It’s all just catharsis.
3 – How do you stay fresh and on top of new sounds, and trends?
I don’t anymore. Trends come and go but speaking your truth will always be in style so I try to just go with that and if I like something then I do it. A friend of mine is a pretty well-known songwriter and I remember her telling me one day “just go with your gut.” So that’s what I do. And that seems to work best. If you try and analyze and say “oh I gotta do this, be like this person, give it this feel” you will miss the mark. You can be inspired by something but mimicking never ever works. My songs usually start with a beat. A producer will give me a beat and I write the lyrics and melody on top of that based on what the music emotes for me.
4 – Why is your new album called ‘Higher’?
I’m a seeker. I’m always happy to be where I’m at but I’m also aware that there is always more to be experienced so I’m constantly trying to rise towards whatever that may be. Many of the songs on the album are about those types of journeys. We’re kind of on this staircase and you don’t just get one step upward and think, “Okay, well I’m here now. I guess I will just sit at this step for the rest of my life.” For me it’s more like, “Alright. I’ve accomplished that. Now what!?” I’m always making little tweaks to make things better for myself. I also believe in a Power that is beyond what is just inside me and I’m constantly aware of signs that there is something higher at play than just the world we see with our eyes on a day-to-day basis. There is something out there and you don’t even have to give it a name. It’s just a light inside all of us that is working toward some greater good. Those themes are woven throughout.
5 – What’s the hardest song to sing off the new album?
“Inferno”. It’s so high. I don’t know what I was thinking when I wrote it. Hah. Also, “The Stories We Tell Ourselves”. That song is pure raw emotion for me.
6 – How do you overcome performance anxiety?
Sometimes I’ll have a little bit of whiskey butI like to be pretty clear for the most part. I love being on stage, you kind of have to if you want to be in this business. There’s always a bit of a thought process beforehand though. I want the audience to enjoy themselves so I think about that. I get really silent within for a minute and just think about connecting with people like we are all old friends at a house party.
7 – Do you think artists should give their music away for free?
I think that if people knew how much money the artist put into making that music they would be more inclined to buy it. But people just don’t know. They aren’t aware of what went into that song. I don’t get upset about it or anything. “It is what it is.”But I do often think about how I can’t go into a restaurant and ask a chef to prepare me his favorite meal for free because he loves food and he’s good at it. I don’t go to a tire shop and ask my mechanic to work on my car for free just because he is passionate about automobiles. I don’t get free haircuts. Why? Because that person went through training and certification and hour after hour of perfecting their craft to make me look stylish. So isn’t it funny how it’s so different with music? MUSIC! The thing that every single person in the world loves, that can take you from sad to happy in an instant or transport you back to a time in your life that you remember fondly. For me, I look at it like this; I’m taken care of. Always. I always have enough. I get to do cool things and play my songs for people and that’s pretty cool. For me, it always comes back around. What I give, I get back.
8 – Everyone has a secret, What’s yours?
Everyone has multiple secrets but mine wouldn’t be secrets if I told you them now would they?
Ananya Birla Discusses New Tune “Day Goes By” Ft. Sean Kingston In Interview
She’s a popstar, mental health campaigner, entrepreneur and the first female artist to go platinum singing in English in India. I’m talking about Ananya Birla, who got the chance to chat with Electro Wow blog about her latest collaborative single with Sean Kingston, “Day Goes By” + much more. Scroll down to read this exclusive interview.
1 – What do you miss most about open-mic nights in London?
I really loved those little shows. I guess sometimes I miss their anonymity. No-one knowing who I was, no hype, no real expectation. I was also having a tough time back then at college and those nights around London, when it was just me up on stage, was something I used to look forward to the entire week..
2 – Apart from open-mic nights, in what other ways did you promote your music at the early stage of your career?
I’ve always loved performing, but back at that start of it all I kept pretty quiet about it. I was still full of self-doubt, and unsure whether I had what it took to make it work as a career. It wasn’t until I signed on with Universal back in India that I really believed I could do it and started the whole self-promotion thing. I was lucky that one of my first tracks was remixed by Afrojack, which threw me into everything pretty quickly.
3 – Do you consider yourself a natural-born singer?
Music has always been a massive part of my life – nothing in the world makes me happier. I grew up in an incredibly musical household, and was always performing, whether it was playing classical Indian music on the santoor or playing my friends songs I’d written, strumming along on my guitar. It’s a part of me, for sure.
It was unreal to be able to share the stage with such a talented artist like Wiz. To do what he does, and make it look effortless – now that’s talent.
5 – What type of listeners would be interested in your new tune “Day Goes By”?
It is upbeat reggae/pop vibes… you can dance with it or chill to it. We had a lot of fun making the track and you can definitely hear that in the final product.
6 – Is there any message you want to share through the lyrics?
I write or co-write all of my lyrics, and they’re all based on my own personal experience. While the topics are universal – love, lust, heartbreak– the feelings in the tracks are all authentic. I want my audience to connect with my music emotionally, nothing makes me happier than when I read DMs from fans saying one of my songs helped them to feel better about something they were going through.
7 – How did your collaboration with Sean Kingston come about?
I met Sean last year when I opened for his tour in India. We got on immediately – he’s such a level-headed, grounded guy. He really vibed with my sound, and we agreed we’d jam together next time I was in LA. So, when I was over, I hit him up and pretty soon after we were making Day Goes By.
8 – Can you share with us any funny anecdote while you were recording the music video?
I gave one of my friends back in India a call on their birthday, and I had told Sean she was a massive fan. Next thing I know, he grabs the phone and is singing Beautiful Girl down the line. She loved it!
9 – Who would you love to collaborate with in the future?
So many people, all over the world. Collaborations with artists from different places really help elevate a song to another level because everyone has such a unique way of working and drawing inspiration. Khalid has been doing some amazing stuff recently, I would absolutely love to collaborate with him. Post Malone, I am also loving at the moment. Since I was a kid, I dreamed of working with Eminem.
There is a lot of evidence to say so. Music has the power to act as a tool for processing emotions, trauma, and grief—and it can also be a great way for dealing with anxiety. I also recently read that heavy metal is particularly good for combatting depression. Personally, music has helped me through some of the most difficult periods of my life.
Music has also given me and many others an amazing platform to speak about an issue that is still not really openly discussed. The more we talk about it, the more likely we are to get rid of the stigma that prevents so many people from reaching out and getting help, and also to make sure these people feel less alone.
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SYNES Opens Up About Chart-Topping Single “The Man I Am”
SYNES opens up about “The Man I Am”, a Synthpop ballad that debuted at number 3 on the LGBTQ chart. But behind the catchy melodies, there are also emotive and relatable lyrics. For all those who know him, you’ll agree that all his songs are impossible to go unnoticed due to his powerful and strong vocals. Read our full interview down here!
1 – First of all, what message do you want to convey to your listeners with your new single “The Man I Am”?
I think the message that I want to send my listeners with my new single is don’t be afraid to write about stuff that’s personal. Good music comes from the heart, and great lyrics come from the heart. Art is subjective. Be who you are, and don’t forget to thank those who made you who you are.
2 – Are the lyrics based on a personal story?
Actually yes. The song is written as a thank you to my late mother who died back in 2017. I wrote the song as a story first. Recounting the time I walked into her house after she passed to pick up the pieces of her life. My mother always kept pictures of us kids on her walls and when I arrived there I had to take them down off the walls which was rough. The song starts with the memories of those pictures. In looking at them one by one, I saw the timeline of her and how she was with me growing up. It was beautiful and tragic all at the same time, just like her. It took me a long time to forgive my mother for some behavior over the years. But this song was the catharsis I needed to move on. This song is dedicated to her memory.
3 – What’s your favorite line from this song?
“I try to find the reason why you were so blind, But now I’ll swallow all my pride.” Because this is the moment when I forgave her.
4 – If I am not wrong, I believe your sound is influenced by Depeche Mode. Is that correct?
Absolutely, among others such as VNV Nation, and Petshop Boys, and other great Synthpop acts. I grew up going to industrial and goth clubs so my sound is still very much in that vein.
Actually no, he co-produced both “Something’s Got to Give”, and “It’s Over”. We have been working together since the inception of SYNES. He’s a great producer.
6 – Why do you believe this track is going to keep climbing up the charts? How do you feel about it?
Ha! One can only hope, right? There is so much music out there, it humbles me that people want to listen to my record. I think it’s doing well because it is a deeply personal song that folks can feel connected to. Maybe they have someone in mind as well that made them who they are when they listen.
7 – How many days did it take you to shoot the video?
Actually only one. I was graciously given the space from my college to use and we banged it out in one full 9 hour day.
8 – Are you planning to release remixes?
As of this time, we are not planning on releasing remixes. Perhaps an acoustic or just piano version, but not remixes.
9 – Is SYNES taking a dark direction with his music for the upcoming singles?
I’ve always lived on the darker side of things. I have a hard time connecting to stuff that is overly happy. Not because I’m sad, I just don’t think it’s genuine. Maybe one day I’ll write a love song or a soulful ballad, but since the world is dark, and my world is in a dark place, my writing and art are going to be as well. I think art should reflect the artist’s situation. Anything else feels disingenuous.
10 – Finally, is there anything else you would like to share with your fans?
Be on the lookout for new singles, and my album “7” which is coming soon. And keep at it, that little voice telling you shouldn’t is the reason why you should. Remember that!
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Interview | Questions & Answers With Roberto Rodriguez
Roberto Rodriguez is known for his releases on labels such as Red Lizard, Pulsive Media, and Seriously Records and has seen support from major DJs such as Don Diablo, Oliver Heldens and Timmy Trumpet. His latest release “Nostalgia” is a melodic Bass House tune that’s guaranteed to bring the party. We caught up with Roberto to find out more about his track.
1 — Hi Roberto, first off, great track! Can you tell us a bit about the story behind ‘Nostalgia’?
Hey and thank you! This song was created in a summer studio session and was produced in a few hours. I wanted to capture those summer feels in this track.
2 — How do you approach creating a new production?
First of all, there must be nice weather, lots of sunshine! Then I like to have a lot of positive energy and just be in a good mood when I’m producing.
3 — What do you love most about this track?
As in most of my songs, the main melody is what is most memorable.
4 — Would you say this is the typical ‘Roberto Rodriguez’ sound?
This is not the typical ‘Roberto Rodriguez’ sound because it does not exist. We are in these times now where every song should sound different and I love experimenting with each release.
5 — What has the reaction been like so far?
So far the reaction has been really positive. I think that with good promotion, this song can do really well on the market.
6 — How would you describe “Nostalgia” to someone who hasn’t heard it yet?
“Nostalgia” is a song that can be classified as a light Bass House. It is a track that allows you to let loose and have fun at parties.
8 — What’s your one piece of golden advice to new producers?
Set targets for yourself and consistently strive for the goal. You need to put in a lot of hours to reap the rewards.
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Behind The Scenes Of Withus’ ‘Up Down’ EP — Interview
Since forming in 2018 they have quickly gained the attention of the industry with their original productions getting signed to some of the hottest labels around and bringing their signature sounds to clubs and festivals all over Germany. Withus never fails to thrill the crowd with an energetic grooving mix of House and Tech House. Their recent EP ‘Up Down’ has been a raging success across the electronic music scene so we caught up with the boys to discuss their Motive Records release.
1 — What was the concept behind the EP?
After releasing ‘Got Me’, which we created with a lot of Ibiza vibes in mind and our Tech House groover ‘Diamonds’ with its Hip-Hop samples on Heulsuse, we wanted to make some classically inspired House again.
Alex found this vocal hook deep down in his folders and we put dozens of FX on it and played around with it for a solid three hours. The second track “Someone” started out with that piano progression. We built a matching bass line and put some very classic House vocals on it.
2 — Which is your favourite track on the EP and why?
Really tough question right there. Every track got its own unique spin to it. It depends on the situation and mood. “Up Down” surely has more of a clubby dance vibe to it, “Someone” is more for the chilled-out party at the beach, when the sun sets and you put more and more booze into the drinks!
3 — What is your creative process like when working together?
It usually starts out with an idea one of us has picked up at some point in the studio individually. Then we both sit down and talk about which direction the track should head. Everybody comes up with different elements, ideas, vocals. There is no certain procedure. Every song comes to life in a different manner.
4 — How would you best describe the ‘Up Down’ EP in 3 words?
Catchy, groovy and uplifting.
5 — What do you love about each track?
“Up Down” is exactly what you want to hear at 1 am in the club with its chunky bass-heavy groove and its super catchy vocal hook. “Someone” is the perfect accomplishment with a deeper vibe, it’s jacking percussion, thumping bass and classic house vocal samples.
6 — Tell us how the reaction to the EP has been?
We’ve got a ton of great feedback. It was really surprising. We knew we made some solid stuff, but we didn’t expect that much appreciation. Seeing the EP climbing higher and higher in the charts and finally peaking at #27 on Traxsource House was stunning.
7 — Which part of the track do you usually start with?
Like we said, there’s no certain way. Every track comes to life in its own inimitable way. Sometimes we start with kick and bassline, sometimes with a vocal snippet or hook, sometimes with a melody we have in mind or with a percussion groove.
8 — What was it like working with Motive Records?
At that time there was this massive release ‘Give Me Love’ we pumped at our gigs on and off, on Motive Records. So, we sent them our demo. Within a few hours, they replied on Instagram with our songs on blast in the studio and a few days later we signed the contract!
The guys from Australia did a great job and really pushed the release. All the lovely people there are kind-hearted, down to earth and you immediately recognize there’s nothing more important to them than music. We want to take this opportunity to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts once again.
9 — Where can people download their copy?
Download your copy of ‘Up Down’ on every store or stream it on every service out there. You can click this link to go to your preferred store/streaming service: https://smarturl.it/withusupdown
10 — What’s next for Withus?
We don’t want to say too much about the next big thing at this point, but we’re currently working with some great artists and material and we’re non-stop in the studio. Right now, we’re in talks with some really nice labels, so see what surprises are coming in the future. Stay tuned!
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Interview | Questions & Answers With Natixx
German DJ and Producer duo Natixx are currently climbing their way through the ranks of the EDM scene with every release they make. With previous releases on Maddox, Spur Records and a whole heap of successful bootlegs, it’s clear that this duo is a match made in heaven and with their “Harmony” release making its way up the charts we caught up with the duo to find out more.
1 — What was the inspiration behind ‘Harmony’?
We actually had no real inspiration. We were just in the studio messing around with some sounds until we randomly came up with the idea. Because it was a really melodic track with lots of harmonies, we decided to name it “Harmony”.
We always start with the Melody. After that, we try to build a drop around it and when we are finished with that we start working on the rest of the track.
3 — How has the reaction been to the release?
The track received some really great feedback from all over the world.
4 — What was it like working with League Of Lyons?
Everything worked perfectly fine. We know the owners of League Of Lyons (The Lyonbrotherz) personally so it went really smooth. We loved working for them.
6 — What’s your favourite part of the drop?
In the second half of the drop when the melody goes one octave up.
7 — How would you sum up “Harmony” to someone who hasn’t heard it yet?
It is a really melodic and powerful track that is perfectly made for streaming but also for big festivals and clubs.
8 — Where can people go to download your latest single?
It is available on every major store and streaming service.
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