Hello world and Merry Christmas to all, peace & love on earth! Like many of you I love Pandora. Do you know that Pandora has to pay $$ everytime we stream a song on their platforms? As you can imagine this can get quite costly. I suggest they begin paying per 500 or 1000 plays. I realize musicians need to get paid but I hope not at the cost of losing this revolutionary music genome technology. We need compromise on both sides! Now I said my gift to you all is music and I did not lie. NYC native Jared Weintraub is here with his smooth, melodic, and contagious sound. His ‘Full Band EP’ is out now and I will have it playing thru New Years! Join me as Jared speaks on getting into music, staying positive, and he was right about December 22.
Stoli: I love your sound. At what age would you say that you developed your sound and discovered who you are as a musician?
Jared Weintraub: Thanks! My sound is something I have been developing my entire life and am constantly experimenting with. I think that my sound is a reflection of wherever I am personally at that point in my life and how I express myself as an individual every day. Being an acoustic artist has always been a natural fit for me because I feel like I have a very simple and positive message in my songs that is easily expressed with a simple acoustic guitar and me singing. However, I also think that with this “Full Band” EP project I learned that adding other instruments and ideas into the simple music that I originally wrote, that I could expand on the messages and themes of my songs in a bigger way then I had imagined them. This realization is an example of how I think it’s very important to constantly question myself and try new things while also remaining true to the sound I have always known myself to be bound to.
Stoli: Growing up in your home how much did your friends/family encourage you to pursue music?
Jared Weintraub: My earliest memories revolve around music and my family. On my moms side my grandfather was always listening to Broadway musical soundtracks, or playing his mandolin. My uncle Art is also an incredible musician so I always remember seeing and hearing him perform which was a huge influence on me. On my dads side I have very early memories of playing the piano in my grandmother’s house, which was probably my earliest experimentation with creating music of my own. My family always taught me to do whatever you love and whatever makes you happy and somehow figure out a way to make it work. Music has always been that thing for me so I am very lucky to have a very loving and supporting family that has never second-guessed my decision to make music my life. I am also very lucky to have a lot of close friends who all do very different things in life and support each other in whatever ways we can. I was overwhelmed on the night of my EP release party when over 100 of my family and friends came to show their support for me. I am very thankful and grateful to have such incredible people in my life.
Stoli: You have been a solo artist for most of your career. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being solo as opposed to a group?
Jared Weintraub: I have! Obviously there are tons of advantages to being solo: You can rehearse anytime and anywhere, schedule any performance at anytime wherever you’d like, make decisions right away without consulting anybody else, and pretty much having the independence to do and go anywhere you’d like. However, there’s a lot of pressure being a solo artist because no matter what happens on or off stage you are ultimately responsible for the results. Doing a full band was an incredibly eye opening and positive experience for me since I had never tried it before. I love being surrounded by extremely talented musicians who brought out things in songs that I wrote that I would have never thought of or knew existed in my writing. I also love performing with other people because each person brings different perspective and energy into the music that I could not do acoustically. I love each of the two experiences and definitely plan on doing both in the future.
Stoli: I have your ‘Full Band’ EP and its great! How long were you writing & recording the songs and how did you choose the 5 on the EP?
Jared Weintraub: Thank you so much! I wrote the song “Why Won’t it Rain?” when I was 15 and “Positivity was written a week before rehearsals started with the band, so the “Full Band” EP is a collection of songs I’ve written over many different stages in my life. In choosing these 5 songs I tried to pick songs that I felt a deeper connection to than just the words or the music. I also wanted to make sure that they were songs that I thought would benefit from being recorded with a full band rather than the acoustic home recordings I’ve done in the past.
Stoli: If you were to do a music video for one single what would it be off the EP?
Jared Weintraub: I’ve thought about this a lot recently because I would like to do a high quality video in the near future. Right now I’m leaning towards “Stand Up” because I feel like there are a lot of different images and themes that I could incorporate into the story of the song. A music video should be something that adds to the purpose of the song and I think “Stand Up” would definitely benefit from a visual interpretation.
Stoli: I watched some of your live videos on YouTube. Do you prefer playing live or in studio and any shows coming up?
Jared Weintraub: I love playing in the studio because there are unlimited options as to what you can create with very little. For example, I can sing lead vocals, then add several different harmonies, and it will sound like a bunch of different people singing together. However, I have to say that I prefer playing live. There is something about performing to an audience and being able to feel their energy and feed off of however they are feeling that makes me love performing live. I think the act of performing live is one of the very few experiences that will never be able to be reproduced by a computer and feel the same as the real thing.
Stoli: I love your song “Positivity.” What inspired you to write that song and how can people who are hurting stay positive in these hard times?
Jared Weintraub: “Positivity” was a song that really wrote itself. I was visiting my friend Frank at the University of Delaware (where I went to school as well), and while he was in class I sat in his bedroom and just started writing. By the time he got back from class I had written the whole thing and played it for him. Having just graduated from college, being in California for the summer, and then coming back home and realizing I wasn’t going back to class in the fall and not knowing what was next for me made me feel very anxious. Sitting in my friends room and reflecting on this and realizing that as long as I kept a positive mindset and worked hard at whatever it is I decide to do in life then I can never live with regrets. To me regret is the scariest idea because it means that you wish that you had made a different decision in life then the one you decided at the time. The idea behind “Positivity” is that no matter what happens, even if I end up sleeping on the floor, I can take responsibilities for my own actions as long as I stay positive and try my hardest. Some of the hardest times in my life have led me to some of the greatest. By finding something to be passionate about and work hard for, I think people can stay positive in the times we live in today no matter how hard things may seem. I have always believed that hopelessness and boredom are the two most dangerous things in the world.
Stoli: What times & mood during your day do you feel like writing music?
Jared Weintraub: For some reason writing comes to me in waves. I can write several songs within a week of each other and then not be able to finish a song for several months after that. My songs typically start as a single line or idea that I write down throughout my day about whatever it is a may be feeling at any given moment and then I end up going back to it when I have time to be alone and really digest whatever thoughts or feelings that inspired that line.
Stoli: Do you believe the Mayans that December 21 is the end of the world?
Jared Weintraub: I think that anything is possible! My gut tells me that the sun will rise on December 22nd and things will carry on as usual. But I think the possibility for some sort of fundamental change in our way of living is very possible as well.
Stoli: What is coming up for Jared Weintraub and where you at online?
Jared Weintraub: I have lots of big plans for the near and distant future! I am in the early stages of planning a tour for 2013, recording an EPK video, writing new music, and promoting my “Full Band” EP. I am online at www.jaredweintraub.com, www.facebook.com/jaredweintraubmusic, @jaredweintraub on twitter, and soundcloud.com/jared-weintraub.