Sunday, December 23, 2012

Is it Over?

Out of boredom i have decided to write a simple little post about the end of the world. I am writing it at 10:15 PM EST on January 10, 2010.

So the question is... Did it end? You see i have scheduled this post for 6:00 PM EST on December 23, 2012. Why the 23rd? Well, as far as we can tell the supposed end of the world occurs December 21, 2012. However, some say its the 22nd. I figured just in case i would wait until the 23rd to ask the question.

Anyhow, See ya in 2013! (I hope).

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Is it really May?

Yes, I suppose it is. Only things going on with me lately have been me working on some website projects here and there and working on getting a few new tech clients for my IT endeavors. I think in one of my last entries i mentioned an actual live music act that was forming and possibly getting ready to start hitting some venues. Sadly that project, Falcon Heavy, is no more. Seems like it was glued together so well, but in the end it was cheap glue. No animosity towards anyone there though, I was quitting it just the same time everyone else was. Still sucks though, i was enjoying the whole "creating music organically" thing, you know, more than just me writing the tunes. So as far as musc goes, think i am going to be on a bit of a hiatus, at least from writing and recording. Need some time to think abou the things that mean something to me, my next inspirado. Need a new muse. I have ideas to follow up my 2011 release (Swim) with, but they are vague and require more thought. I will probably have that ready sometime before 2013. I am still playing with the cover band locally though, keeps me musical without any real creative effort. Which can be very nice. Next up, I would really like to try to start making some short film stuff again. Even the goofy shit from years ago that can be found on my YouTube Channel. I think that i would prefer to do some more serious, introspective type stuff though. We'll see how that goes. I will kinda need other people to help me realize some of the ideas i have, which is a bit of a curse. You know, cause i would have to rely on other people to help get things done. Its hard to be a great motivator. Anyway, i guess that is all for now. I have ideas for this year and hopefully i can realize them! So say we all.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Been Busy

For the past month i have been rather busy working on web development, a cover band and trying to get a second band going (of original music). Mix in some unexplainable anxiety issues i have been having and you get BUSY BUSY BUSY! The cover band: Well, i am playing drums for that gig. It is a classic rock / blues / country (yeah, country) cover band. Anything from Santana to SRV to Hank WIlliams, its fun and it pays so its a great thing. The other band: too early to say on that, perhaps things are looking good? Web development: currently working on a project that needs to be super clean and "academic" looking. Which is actually more complicated than it sounds. Doing clean and simple designs i think are always more complicated than just slapping huge amounts a geegaws and flash all over the place (not that i'd ever use flash!). About the anxiety... I don't have any idea where thats coming from. Obviously i can think of things that stress me out, but not like this. It seems nearly uncontrollable, nearly. Like i am in a constant state of stress, which is no good of course. Thats all i have to say about that right now. Otherwise things are looking up, I've got at least 6 more live gigs with the cover band lined thru the rest of the year. Starting to feel the draw to write some new music as well, something the rocks hard as well as something creepy, haunting and sultry. Hope to do some work with some female vocals on that front. Anyway, i guess thats all i got for now. See ya later!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

On Completion and Notes from The Trial

So now that my Swim album is done and out there is in the real world I thought maybe it was time to kind of detail some of it's creation.

Inception:

The concept itself was born one night a couple years ago standing alone on the shores of the Atlantic ocean in the middle of the night. I was just there, nothing else. Sound of the waves, the ocean breeze and the feel of the sand beneath my feet. The music itself didnt take on any life at that time, but the mood was born certainly.

Flash forward 2 years and 1 heartbreak later.

I return home, enjoy several months of just being once again the me i thought i was. The musician me. The guy who lives, breathes music. I was alive again and i knew what had to be done...

Conception:

It started simply, just a song called Man Unkind. It was just kind of a test of where i wanted to go with this Swim thing. I felt the pull of that eastern seaboard in an all new way, it wanted me to write an ode to it and the feelings left behind there.

So I did.

Construction (the technical side of things):

Everything you hear on the album is me (save for a soundbite at the end of Creeper Police which is my friend Amanda). That means drums, guitar, vocals, synth/keys and random noises that occur from time to time. This is not because i am some control freak or something. It was simply me expressing exactly what i was thinking, who i am and why i do what i do in the only way i have ever really known how.

It starts usually with a line, a sentence. Like an ocean in my head and how the waves just keep breaking. Its an unstoppable force, before us, with us and long after us those waves will break. So thats it. I write the words for the song "Like and Ocean" and then decide what that particular song should sound like. In that case it sounded like plucky minor chords and and a descending chorus with a little drum driven break.

Sometimes though it starts with the guitar and a certain feeling. The song "The Good Ones" is an example of that. I felt like it needed to move fast, to run away from everything else. To get away from the good ones who cant understand its meaning. So its got it's jagged chorus and jittery guitar thats on the verge of a psychotic breakdown. And then when it feels like perhaps it will fly apart the drums, bass and guitar come together for a solid bridge and into the outro.

The third method is much more organic. There are two songs that were written that way. "Truth Be Told" was written practically at the same time it was recorded. It's straight from my soul, i guess. Its the truth i suppose. Then "Which Way Home" was sort of the same. I had this simple two chord strum going and the words were just there, i knew them without having to ever right them down. The song was built to close out the album and apparently close out this post as well.

Errata:

There was a lot of other work that went into creating "Swim". I not only wrote and played all the instruments. I also produced it, meaning i recorded it, mixed it and mastered it. Which in the end took likely twice as long to do as the actual writing did.

"Swim" is obviously a heartbreak record, i had some of that i had to get off my chest. Don't think however its all about some girl, because it certainly is not. Many things break hearts just as well as girls. Some of it has basis in my previous active band project and the lack of true commitment from parts of the components of the particular machine.

The album cover. I had several different options for it including an original piece by the same Amanda from "Creeper Police". In the end i chose the night shot from the Atlantic because it was literally from the exact moment of the inception of the very thing it represents. It just made sense to me, and thats who i was doing this for.

Closing:

Its been a very informative and enlightening experience. I think i have really honed my skill as a composer. Gone are the days of meaningless pieces of music that dont make sense (not that i wont return there for fun). I feel proud of what i accomplished on my own and i sincerely hope you enjoy my creation.

- Jonathan Rollans

P.S. Yes, a live act swim set is in the works. It is too early to say what, who and when it will be, but it is coming.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The water is fine, come Swim

As of Sunday, July 31st my debut album is complete! I am talking full on gold master release to manufacture stuff here. Albeit this will be a digital only release to begin with (iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, etc...) It is set to be released on August 16 2011.

Three years of deep thought and a decade of experience has grown this record, has permeated the music with actual feelings and emotional discord (I know, right? Me, emotions?). I started writing the material in ernest in October 2010 if i am not mistaken. Wrapped up the the actual track list in May. Took three months off to reflect on whats been done and see if its really what i meant to say in my own way. Oh, yes, yes it is exactly what i want to convey to the listener. Its like a tattoo in some ways, i thought maybe i would get it done and then regret it. I don't in the slightest.

Basically what i am trying to say here is that i am releasing a record August 16th and you should buy it from your store of choice. I have a few stories to tell you if only you'll listen.

The album itself is titled "Swim".

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My Lost Wallet

Just in case anyone ever finds my wallet and happens to google me, I am posting here to say.. Keep anything in it, I just want the wallet back. It was my stepdad's who passed away 10 years ago. (though I would like my stash of concert ticket stubs as well).

Jonathan Rollans
(682) 738-5709

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The album “Swim” coming soon!

Howdy folks, just wanted to post up a quick item here and let it be known that my album of brooding indie rock tunes will be released in July. I Don’t have an exact date yet, still some finalization going on with it (mixing, “mastering” (cause you know, what exactly IS mastering in this age of digital distribution?) ).

In a lot of ways this record was being written for the past three years. More in a metaphorical sense, i didn't actually start writing the parts until October, 2010. I had a lot of “focus” time while living in the in the hills of West Virginia. Time to think, for introspection and the philosophy of cause and effect. What does that mean? I dont know, im just a vague artist with 50 minutes of half thought/wholly felt emotions and instrumental intentions.

Having said all that, I also wanted to share this here music video I did for an acoustic version of the song titled “Desperation” which is a track from the album.



P.S. About the name “Swim”;

I chose this name because of some deep thought i was having about the human condition and all that. If you were stranded out in the middle of the ocean, alone, with no reason to believe there was any help on the way. Would you swim? Or would you just sink on down into the watery depths of the sea? So really, the album’s name is an answer to that multiple choice question. It is just in our nature to swim, and this is me swimming.

Qik

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I am a musician/songwriter and I also develop websites and do a little bit of hobby programming.