THEAUSSIEWORD.COM catches up with Jonathan from UNBLOOM.
How and where did it all begin for you? What drew your interest to the music industry?
I started playing drums when I was 13 years old, and eventually made my way into several indie, funk, and jazz bands. My love for production and studio wizardry began when we recorded these projects in various studio environments. I loved the process of tinkering and sculpting sounds to create new and exciting ideas.
My love of dance/electronic music, however, occurred when I listened to Disclosure’s debut album “Settle” for the first time. I knew in that instant that I wanted to make music that could move people physically and emotionally.
What motivates or influences you in your quest to make great music?
Making people emote to my music is something that motivates me every day to become better at my craft. I want to make music that engages you on all levels.
What are your biggest goals you hope to accomplish as an artist?
In a world of streaming and metrics, I think getting to 1 million streams would be a big deal for me. I know numbers a superficial basis to mark success, but I just feel hitting that number would mean so much to the validity of the UNBLOOM project.
What can we expect from you in the coming months? Any plans to tour?
No touring plans as of yet, but expect more music very soon!
Tell us a bit about your latest release and how would you best describe your music?
‘Best Believe’ is a song that explores the hard truths of what it means to be in a relationship–to be in love. Sometimes, it involves confrontation and the ensuing pain of getting to the core of where the relationship stands, or, quite frankly, doesn’t stand at all. And sometimes the relationship surprises you; the pain is temporary because the outcome is worthwhile. That’s the kind of sentiment Connor and I wanted to explore in ‘Best Believe’.
Give us an insight into your creative process. What gets you writing songs?
There has to be an initial, emotional spark. Whether it is the drum pattern, chord progression, or melody line, something has to make body move and engage me emotionally. If the idea doesn’t accomplish this, I toss it pretty quickly.
Is there a hidden meaning in any of your music?
I’m not sure it’s hidden, but I certainly have a track record of making music that is sonically extraverted, yet lyrically introverted (if that makes sense haha). I make music that creates a personal crisis on the dance floor.
Success, what is the secret to it?
I guess you can’t go wrong with the holy trinity: hard work, perseverance, and patience.
What has been your biggest career highlight so far?
I’m fortunate to say there have been a few! Being featured on Apple Music’s electronic main page as a completely independent act was certainly a surreal moment. Getting recognized by tastemakers such as EARMILK, Cloudkid, and Peter Robinson (of Popjustice) was also pretty special. Famed Japanese radio legend, DJ TARO, also played my song ‘I Followed’ live on Japanese radio which was so amazing—he actually sent me a video of him singing along which was bonkers!
Which stars of the music industry do you find inspiring?
I look up to Kevin Parker of Tame Impala. That’s a man that said “screw the industry, I’m going to make music thatIlove.” He wasn’t concerned with alienating his fan-base when shifting his sonic palette—he simply just did it. That fearlessness is something I admire.
Are there any new projects in the pipeline?
Yes there are! A new UNBLOOM song will be released by the end of April. Let me tell you, the feature artist on it is fantastic, and the song itself is a huge bop.
The music industry is huge, where do you see yourself a few years from now and what is your favourite and least favourite part about this line of work.
I hope to be writing for other artists, and doing production for larger acts. My least favourite part of this industry is the inconsistency it delivers on every level. It’s hard to make a career of something that dips and rises like a rollercoaster.
Name a few of your favourite Australian artists.
Obviously I have to say Tame Impala! Another Aussie act I love is the band Last Dinosaurs—really groovy and intricate indie rock.
The shape of the music industry has changed significantly over the years, including the use of social media, how do you feel about the industry as a whole and what does it mean to you in getting your records out into the public eye?
The industry is full of liars, scammers, and salesmen. But here’s the thing: a lot of other industries operate in the same way. Ultimately, I use social media as a platform to voice my own vulnerability and frustrations (not only my success), and hopefully that destabilizes the “façade culture” social media has created. I’m just being as honest as I can be.
How do you plan on cracking the international market?
I have had a fair amount of success outside of Canada, actually! I think the use of international playlists has broadened my fan-base.
Do you collaborate with others? Who is on your wish-list?
I absolutely do! 2018 was more of a solo-effort for me to prove I could be a “complete” artist, but now I’m returning to my roots as a talent curator of sorts. I love bringing talented people together to create something beyond my own skillset. In terms of dream collaborations, I would be chuffed to work with Disclosure or the living legend that is Pharrell Williams.
What advice do you give for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
Develop thick skin, and prepare for rejection; not everyone will vibe out to your music the way you hoped. But don’t be discouraged! Take the good with the bad and better yourself.
A message for your fans. How do you best interact and respond with your fans?
I love you all so much. Your unbelievable support these past two years have been humbling. I can’t wait to make more music for you.
Any last words?
Thank you so much for having me, and playing ‘Best Believe’ on your station! It means the world to me.
Apple Music: UNBLOOM