Hailing from Vegas, Jason Rylan is a sucker for the nightclub scene and it shows in his music with energetic elements of: Pop, Dance, Electronica/EDM and even Rock in play. Rylan has been working on his latest album for the last six years, so a lot of blood, sweat and tears poured into this project. The record is titled ‘The Charm’ and it fittingly so since it’s the third release from Jason Rylan and so luck just may be on his side. Quite a buzz on this one as Rylan said it best here: “To me, turning on the Charm meant helping others (and myself) grow spiritually through music. It was meant to hopefully inspire healing, new perspectives, and that it’s okay to be different.” Now it’s off to the races with Jason Rylan!
J Rae: So I see you were born in California but reside in Las Vegas and so wanted to ask what made you move to “Sin City”?
Jason Rylan: My parents decided to move to Las Vegas when I graduated High School. It was sink or swim!
J Rae: Besides music, what is your favorite thing to do in Vegas and does the term “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas” apply to you, your lifestyle and/or music in any way, shape or form?
Jason Rylan: Loaded question! I pretty much spend most of my free time working on new music, hanging out with friends, nightclubs, go to shows. I would say ‘What happens in Vegas’…would make an interesting television show. Just when I think I’ve seen it all, I’m often surprised. I would say that Vegas definitely influences my music.
J Rae: Do you enjoy all of the glitz & glam that Vegas has to offer and does this atmosphere play a big factor when it comes to writing songs and creating music?
Jason Rylan: Once you take away the Strip, it’s really a small city. The glitz and glam is fun, but all the pretty lights do turn down at some point. I think Vegas has inspired some specific songs over the years. On this current album, Vegas definitely inspired the song “Out Loud.”
J Rae: It stated in your bio that your parents were musicians and that they used to jam out in the garage when you were just a baby. So music has surrounded you your whole life but at what age did you figure out you wanted to be a musician too?
Jason Rylan: Honestly, I never really wanted to be a musician. I really wanted to write and direct major motion pictures. But I was writing melodies for songs for as long as I can remember. There has always been a comfort, familiarity, and solace to it. I gravitated towards commercial music after my father passed away. He had always wished that I would do more with it and I honestly enjoy it, so I started working on projects song by song until a full album was completed.
J Rae: Looking back, what was your favorite instrument to play and learn?
Jason Rylan: Although I suck at it, I like guitar.
J Rae: I saw that you’ve had 3 albums released since 2005 and during that time the elements of electronica, dance, pop and rock have been heavily infused into your songs. What attracted you to this particular style of music to begin with and why?
Jason Rylan: A couple of things attracted me to this… I love the nightclub atmosphere, EDM, and dance music. There is always an energy to it that brings people together. Like most people my age, I also grew up with Pop and Rock…So, naturally I wanted to incorporate a lot of these elements into my own style of sorts.
J Rae: I read that you have worked at several radio stations in Springfield, Missouri and that you also had the chance to work with Disney Magazine and Rolling Stone. Would you mind telling the Skope readers more about this part of your life? Are you still involved with radio stations or magazines?
Jason Rylan: I interned in the promotions department at ALICE 95.5 and KGBX in Springfield, MO. This was a fun time in life. I learned a lot about media value, negotiating, and bartering for airplay. The remotes were fun too. I’m not all that involved with radio stations or magazines anymore except for the stations that air and rotate my songs…or the occasional magazine that covers me or does an interview.
J Rae: It stated in your Bio that you have a passion for visual arts and instrumentation and was wondering if you could describe this more in detail to the Skope audience?
Jason Rylan: Definitely, as mentioned I always wanted to write and direct major motion pictures…like Spielberg/Cameron kind of stuff. I also wanted to film short comedy skits and shows like Chappelle. I still toy with the idea of short fun skits, but haven’t really dived into it.
J Rae: Your most recent album, ‘The Charm’, was released last year and saw that this recording still has the electronica, dance, pop and rock in place but with more of an edge and a little hip-hop thrown in for good measure. Can you take us through the whole recording process of this album and what can listeners expect to hear on ‘The Charm’?
Jason Rylan: I actually started on The Charm about six years ago back in 2010 when I released the album 2012. When I released 2012, I knew that I wanted to work on a third album. I was already conceptualizing the compilation. Even now, I am conceptualizing a potential fourth album, maybe not quite as experimental or as many mixed genres – more pop/dance/rock.
I think the first track we recorded was “I’m Just Sayin’” which made it to the final cut for The Charm. I later decided on the title track about the time we recorded “I’m Just Sayin’”. I decided that since this was my third album, the saying goes “The third time’s the charm.” I wanted each song to be unique, almost like charms hanging from the album as they would from a bracelet…indiscriminate.
At that point, I knew what The Charm was about and what it was going to be: a collection of charm songs with common coined phrases and familiarity. Yet, I wanted every song to be unbound by genres, unbound by religion, dogma, stereotypes, self-judgement/self-hatred, anger, insecurity. To me, turning on the Charm meant helping others (and myself) grow spiritually through music. It was meant to hopefully inspire healing, new perspectives, and that it’s okay to be different. I recorded mainly on the weekends, song by song. A couple of my favorite tracks are “Help is on the Way”, “Ain’t Nobody (Got Time For That)”, and “I’m Just Sayin’”.
J Rae: Being that your latest record is called ‘The Charm’ I have to ask if this has to do with an attractive, personable quality or maybe a good luck charm since you do live in Gambling Central?
Jason Rylan: More like a collection of sayings like “The third time’s The Charm.” I am awkward and not charming at all. ;-)
J Rae: How does ‘The Charm’ stack up to your previous two releases? How do they compare and differ?
Jason Rylan: I think ‘The Charm’ is more of a sophisticated album. I definitely spent more time working on it compared to my previous two releases. I feel like I shared more of myself with this album and like the first two albums were warm ups. ‘The Charm’ has definitely turned more heads and received more attention/accolades.
J Rae: How are you promoting ‘The Charm’ and how has the response been so far from fans and critics?
Jason Rylan: I’ve been promoting the album through various press agencies and Canadian American Records. So far, the response has been cool. Lots of positive feedback, mostly good reviews (and a few bad ones), and lots of fan sign ups. “Help is on the Way” is the song that seems to be drawing the most attention. And I feel that it sends the right message so I’m very happy and Thankful that people gravitate towards this song. I think it shows that they care and that they want to do something to better the world, to better others.
J Rae: Looking ahead, if you can, what’s in the works or on the horizon for Jason Rylan?
Jason Rylan: I’ve been toying with another album project for the last few years and recording off and on. I’m vacillating on album #4 and maybe some music videos.
By Jimmy Rae (firstname.lastname@example.org)