@skopemag Q&A Featuring Tears Of Joy

We are here on a Monday but it is all good, the music keeps on here @skopemag. Today we get to chat with Tears of Joy. Tears of Joy is a power pop band from Pittsburgh, PA formed in 2015 by drummer Jake Leya and singer/guitar player Evan Kadan. Jake is a former child star who drummed for band of local fame: The Options. Evan is a conspiracy theorist and art song composer whose Soundcloud has over 6,000 plays. TOJ focuses on minimalism, stoicism, the critique of post-modernism, and the dissemination of spiritual energy through sonic hypnosis. We are open to endorsements. Join us today and treat yourself to something new & fresh from the steel city!

@skopemag: What is the most current project that you are working on at the moment?

I just got a cool drum machine, so we are working on incorporating some electronic influence on some new songs. We have a bunch of unrecorded material so we haven’t set anything in stone but there will be another EP sooner than later.

@skopemag: When you began your journey in music were your family/friends supportive?

Jake and I both started playing when we were kids, and played in school band and then went on to study music in college. All that was because of our families who listened to us play, got us instruments and lessons and a musical education. So our families have been supportive at the highest level. Our friends are mostly other people in the music scene and we always try to support each other. We have TOJ, and we both play in other bands and have solo projects and someone always shows up and listens.

@skopemag: What other bands/artists do you respect & inspire you?

I really have a lot respect for the “greats” and I know Jake does too. We got raised on classic rock and alternative, and that still influences us a lot. We really like the Who, we love the music and see them as the ideal embodiment of the rock star. Joe Strummer is another one, I watch live Clash performances from the 80’s and I just think “wow this guy is such a force”. I’m inspired by musicians with their own thing going on, people removed a little from the tastes of the time. David Byrne is really cool, he’s always doing his own thing. Action Bronson covers topics in his raps that no one else does.

@skopemag: When you are not doing music what else do you enjoy?

I love to cook, I feel like lots of musicians do. Cooking and music go hand in hand. they both have a lot of subjectivity and improvisation to them, while also incorporating technique that takes practice to hone.

@skopemag: How do you test whether your new song is a keeper or not?

I will come up with a lick and Jake and I will jam on it, no bass player. If it rocks we keep it. But honestly I am not a big editor of my own creativity. I tend not to flesh out ideas that I don’t think are going anywhere. By the time I have a fully formed song its kinda like “we are playing this thing now.”

@skopemag: How much time per week do you devote to music & social media marketing?

To music? I teach K-5 music at a school, I teach guitar, I run live sound, I archive music recorded on analog formats. I mean I probably spend 40 something hours a week doing something musical, but TOJ usually practices for about an hour and a half once a week. I don’t carve out specific time to write, I don’t find it productive. I can’t search for the songs, they will come to me when they are ready. For social media? I spend plenty of time aimlessly scrolling. I don’t know how much of that time is spent being productive but I would guess like an hour a week maybe. Social media is not a strong suit for us. If we weren’t in bands, I don’t think either of us would keep up with it.

@skopemag: Should I feel guilt as an industry insider for paying $10 a month for Amazon Music Unlimited and having access to all music as I please?

No. Not as guilty as you should feel if you were just streaming it for free. But most bands provide music for free anyway, people tend not to buy physicals and streaming doesn’t make a huge profit unless you are really getting some plays. Buy some merch, go to a show, tweet a band’s music or link your IG story to their spotify. All will be absolved.

@skopemag: What kind of environment & mood do you feel most creative towards your music?

I like it t to be clean and quiet, usually pretty early in the morning. I tend to write when i’m pretty level headed and relaxed. Even if the song I’m writing is about some emotion, I don’t write when I’m feeling that way. But I also don’t write a lot about my personal feelings and experiences in an outright way because I think it’s boring to people who aren’t me.

@skopemag: When are you most inspired to create music?

A lot of times I will write something good when I am supposed to be doing something else. In college I would work on papers and get distracted and crank out a whole song of intricate lyrics. I’ll pick up my guitar to practice a jazz chart or something and end up writing a sweet new riff instead. It’s like as soon as there is something I am supposed to do, my brain is so desperate not to do it that it generates lots of new, cool ideas to distract me.

@skopemag: What is coming up for you & where you @ online?

We are hitting the road in early January for a few days to play some east coast shows. We want to get back in the studio too and put some more music out. Find us on the internet: