Welcome to my first Blog post of 2013!
I have a lot of things that I want to talk about, so it was difficult for me to pick just one to start off the year. Then it occurred to me that 2013 is really just a continuation of many of the things that were put into place in 2012. There were lots of new starts and changes that provided me with renewed momentum, direction and inspiration for doing the things I truly enjoy. At the top of that list of course is writing and playing the drums, both of which have a prominent place throughout this blog and my other social media outlets. As a result, I have connected with some very interesting people who have inspired me and been mutually inspired through the use of social media.
The best example of this is the recent connection that I have made with Bon Evans, an up and coming musician in Kingston, Ontario, Canada. We connected very randomly when he found me on Pinterest, which led him to this blog. That was back in November, and we have remained in weekly contact ever since.
What was the connection and what keeps us connected, you ask? That is simple. The connection was through a mutual love of music and writing. He likes my writing and I like his music, so we have used our social media influence to help promote each others’ activities. And it is working! We have also discovered a lot of similarities between our paths and some very random coincidences that have kept it interesting. But above all else, I think we really inspire each other. When he asks me when I will be posting again to my blog, it reminds me that there are actually people out there who are reading this, and who like what I have to say, and look forward to my next post. That is not just inspiring, it is motivating!
So, I want to tell you a bit more about Bon Evans now, as I think that you will find his story inspiring and his humble attitude about his musical accomplishments very refreshing. His first EP was just released in December 2012, and he describes his musical journal as “Fresh out of the gates.” That is quite like my own description of my recent passion for drumming. Anyway, Bon was kind enough to humor me when I asked him for an interview, so here are a few of the highlights from our online interview.
Why did you get into the music biz at this particular time?
I was born into a musical family, but I was never encouraged to learn or play. In fact, I was discouraged from getting into music, in high hopes that I would pursue a reliable and safe career path. Last year my mother went in for thyroid surgery and it was a very emotional moment in our lives. I came home to take care of her and the day before surgery she overheard me singing and playing guitar. She asked her husband to go into their home studio with me to record what she had heard. The surgery went great and she was back home healing in no time. From that initial recording I was inspired to write and create my own music. I know now what I was meant to do and I’m very grateful for the opportunity to do it.
What drives you to keep making music?
Passion, determination, and the realization that every single person has a true purpose in life. I am very thankful for the opportunities that I have been blessed with and I have no intentions of squandering them.
Who inspires you?
There are many people who have inspired me along the way. George Carlin, Tom Green, Sarah Harmer, Leonard Cohen, and John Hiatt all helped me in one way or another. Learning to accept things that make me who I am and expressing it in everything that I do. Personal inspiration in my life comes from my mother and my grandfather. My online connections have also been a great source of inspiration. Just a simple chat can go a long way sometimes.
How would you describe your musical journey?
Fresh out of the gates! I started singing, writing and recording in September 2011. I hit the ground running and plan on running for a long time.
Who would you compare yourself to musically?
The first obvious one is Jack Johnson, more so for the similar style in which we play the guitar. It’s kind of a slap technique. My fans have also said that my music has a “great vintage Cat Stevens” quality to it. I would like to say Leonard Cohen. I recently saw him live in Kingston and the entire performance was right up my alley.
Tell me about your dreams and goals in terms of music?
My goal is to keep making music that I can share with the world. That’s an achievable goal. My dream is to write and create music for movies and shows. Since I was a boy, I have been an avid movie watcher and feel that when I write music, I am actually writing it to a soundtrack that I have not heard or seen yet.
What’s something that people would be surprised to know about you?
I have only been writing and playing music for a little over a year now. Can’t wait to see what next years progress looks like.
What artists and bands are on your playlist right now?
The Lumineers, Foo Fighters, John Hiatt, Alabama 3, Tom Jones, Jack Johnson, Leonard Cohen, Sarah Mclachlin, Sarah Harmer, Jason Mraz, Loudon Wainwright III, Tragically Hip, Neil Young, Pearl Jam, Stone Temple Pilots, Zakk Wylde…so many others.
What advice would you give someone just starting out and wanting to produce their own music?
I say GO FOR IT! Veterans in the music industry will usually tell you otherwise. But I am young and naive, so go for it! The last thing you want to say 20 years from now is “I could have been a star, if only I had tried.” So get out there and try it! Explore, experiment and enjoy the musical mysteries that will haunt your every day!
I hope that you enjoyed this introduction to Bon Evans and that you will check out his music. I also hope that this blog post will inspire you on some level to do the things that make you happy, or to try something that you have always wanted to try, and to leverage your connections. I am most touched by the comments that I receive on this blog and through Facebook and Twitter when people tell me that something I have said or done inspires them in someway.
Finally, I wanted to close with this photo. It is just a reminder of the journey, and the fact that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel, and that we sometimes pass and are sometimes passed up by others, but that the road always continues on… (Yikes, I hope that didn’t sound like the ramblings of Brad Pitt in the Chanel No. 5 commercials!)