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Music News Reviews

PACO Shares His Loneliness in New Single “Cold Love”

St. Louis native Paco just released his single “Cold Love” today, and we’re ready to keep this track on repeat.

Paco’s music defies the constraints of genre, so we asked him how he would describe the sound of this single. “Soul and R&B are my home-base,” Paco said, “but ‘Cold Love’ has a lot of pop influence, some rock influence, and a lot of electronica.”

Whatever this mashup of influences is, we’re down for it. We’ve already got “I’ve got secrets and no one to keep them / tell me are you lonely, too” stuck in our heads. In fact, we are surprised to learn that Paco didn’t think this was even a good song when he first wrote it. “For me personally, I thought it was the most pitiful song I ever wrote,” Paco told us, “but then I played it for people, and they found it relatable.” And relatability is what we really need from songs, isn’t it? The smooth vocals, music that make you move, and an irresistible chorus are truly the cherry on top.

”’Cold Love’ is all about a lack of intimacy from a desired relationship and the cold feelings he receives as he fills that void with a casual love affair.” – PaACO

Click here to listen to “Cold Love,” and be sure to keep Paco on your radar for more music this year!

Categories
Interviews Videos

Molly Lovette on “Lovin’ You” Lyric Video

Rising country artist Molly Lovette released her first lyric video today! And we, of course, are huge fans. Is this also because our own Lauren Hayes shot and edited the video? Yes. But we’re mostly excited to see Molly on our screens, and because we’re finally learning all the words to “Lovin’ You.”

CROWDSURFER: When did you decide to make a lyric video?

MOLLY LOVETTE: I knew I wanted to do something with this song, but with a lot of things being shut down these past few months and having to quarantine, it would have been hard to make a music video. So a lyric video was a nice alternative!

CS: How was your experience shooting your first video?

ML: I didn’t really know what to expect. I didn’t know how awkward I would be or what it was going to be like, but it was fun! It was cool to act out and show the dramatics the song brings. It brought me back to my theatre days.

CS: And what was it like for you being a part of the whole process, from concept to final video?

ML: I love being creative and getting to think of ideas. I’ve had this song recorded since January so I’ve had some time to think it through and plan it. It was nice to collaborate with my publicist at Brickshore Media and with Lauren to take all of our different, but similar, ideas together to make the video.

CS: And how do you feel about the final product?

ML: I love it! Like we said, this is my first video so it took a second to get comfortable seeing myself on the screen and not cringe sometimes. [laughs] But I’m proud of how it turned out! And I think that people are going to like it. I think it’s something different and I’m excited for everyone to see it.

CS: What’s your favorite part of the video?

ML: I really like the instrumental part right after the bridge. I like all the different shots, how it goes quickly, and it’s dramatic. That’s honestly my favorite part of the song, too!

CS: And what was your favorite part of the process?

ML: Just being on set getting to sing and act it out. It was fun just living in the moment!

CS: We love that you’re excited about releasing this video! Thanks for talking with us!

If you haven’t already, be sure to watch the official lyric video for “Lovin’ You” by Molly Lovette right here!

Categories
Interviews Music News

Paco on New Single “Cold Love” and New Label with Sonca Nguyen

Artist Paco and our music curator Sonca Nguyen are quite the talented pair. Paco is a singer-songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, while Sonca is a songwriter, producer, and engineer. Put the two together and they’re bound to make great music. As we do these days, we all talked together, but separately, through a video call to discuss new music and a new label!

CROWDSURFER: Paco, you have had a couple of exciting announcements recently! The first being your new single, “Cold Love,” which comes out June 5th. How are you feeling?

PACO: I am excited! Not a lot of people know but I’ve had this song for about two years. So it’s been a minute, and I’m ready.

CS: Did the song change much in the last two years?

P: Initially, I was ready to put it out and ready to get started. But Brian Owens, my mentor, was like, “Wait, let’s develop it.” The lyrics, melody, all that didn’t change much; the essence was still there. I had some co-production and arrangement from Sonca, who first was just a friend and collaborator, but now is like my lifeline and partner in music. As well as additional co-production, drum programming, and counter melodies from Courtney (JR) Orlando, a Grammy Award Winning Producer and mentor of mine!

CS: And your other announcement is that you and Sonca created Crush Records as a branch of Life Creative Group. First, congrats! Second, when did you decide you wanted to make your own label?

SONCA: It was kind of random. When we first pitched this idea of Cold Love as a single, we pitched it to Brian Owens, the owner of Life Creative. He said, Let’s do it, but instead, do it as your own label.” So, we didn’t even have the idea to create a label intentionally, it just kind of happened because Brian made us realize we were doing everything a label was doing anyways and pushed us to go for it ourselves.

CS: What does Crush Records mean to you?

S: It puts in perspective what I want to do and makes other people take me seriously. Crush is an outlet for us to start a community where we can develop artists the same way we’ve done for Paco. I love the whole process of it, and I want to do it for other people. So, this means that I get to do this forever. And having this name under me gives me more opportunities.

P: It was kind of always the vision to start a label. To me it was just like, shoot, I can do that. It means that one, we’re business owners and that’s amazing, and two, we get to kind of help develop other people and do what we’ve just done. So as other artists come through the ranks we’ll get to write, produce, develop them as well. So that’s exciting.

S: That’s the best part! Working with people is my favorite part besides all the business stuff. And this is what Brian told us. He said, “I just want you guys to do this thing and then give back, give other people these opportunities.” And we were like, oh, absolutely.

CS: As we said, Crush Records is a subset of Life Creative Group. Paco, you’ve been with Life Arts and Life Creative for a while now. How has working with them impacted you?

P: Working with Brian and a non-profit organization such as Life Arts has legitimately given my life direction. Life Creative Group, the creative extension of Life Arts, was just what I needed musically to get my head in the right place.I was dropping out of college, not sure what to do, and I reached out to Brian on Facebook because a friend advised me to, and that’s how we connected. And eventually, I started working in a therapeutic songwriting program and I would produce the songs that they made in the program. Now I’m working with the non-profit side, still working with the therapeutic songwriting program, still working with kids from the Ferguson/Florissant area… but we’re also building the for-profit side now.

CS: Life Creative sounds like a great place to grow that’s full of support.

P: I’m very much a loner and an introvert, and I don’t feel a sense of family many places at all. But I do with these people. Just because they’ve invested so much in me and vice versa.

CS: Anything else you want us to know?

P: I’m not the only artist under Life Creative, so I want to shine a light on some of my peers. Christopher Daniel, who I produce for, and Malena Smith, who’s like a new Norah Jones. We have a couple artists coming out, and hopefully we’ll have a next generation coming behind me soon!

CS: We’ll keep our eyes out! Thanks for talking with us!

Be ready to listen to Paco’s single “Cold Love” on June 5th, and check out the promo video for a sneak peak at the song in the meantime!

Categories
Concert Photography Music News

Drive-In Concerts: The Start of Something New?

Many industries have been hit hard or wiped out completely during this pandemic, and live music is one of them. Summer in St. Louis usually means hanging out on the lawn of an outdoor venue with friends, drinking a beer, and listening to your favorite songs. Now, that’s been taken away. Or has it?

The first of many drive-in concerts took place on May 21 at the POWERplex. Tickets could be purchased ahead of time or on arrival, and cars were spaced out so that you could have an area next to your vehicle to bring out a lawn chair and sit without compromising social distancing.

Molly Lovette kicks off the drive-in night

The stage was big, giant screens broadcasted the video feed, and you could tune in to a radio station if you didn’t want to get out of your car to hear the music. Staff, all wearing masks, came around as servers to those VIP spots on the turf and served orders of food like hot dogs and popcorn. People were dancing, singing, and honking to show their approval!

With a 450 car limit for this event, 200 tickets were purchased ahead of time. By the time they converted the setup from drive-in concert to drive-in movie, capacity was nearly full! It certainly seems like people are down to come out for this form of entertainment during a time where we’ve been without concerts and movie theaters! And at these events, you get both a movie and music.

The two bands that played are local to Missouri and mostly sang covers, but nonetheless the audience was excited to be there. Could this work for a touring artist? Probably not. But until we can return to shows the way we used to know, we’re glad to see people being safe and enjoying live music at the same time.

Categories
Music News Reviews

NOTD Partners With Astrid S in New Single “I Don’t Know Why”

You might know electronic duo NOTD from their songs “I Wanna Know” featuring Beat Miller or “So Close” featuring Georgia Ku, which came out in 2018. NOTD continues to prove that they can create hit after hit with their latest single called “I Don’t Know Why.”

The song, released today, features Astrid S. Her ethereal vocals complement the upbeat track, resulting in a mix that will make you want to dance and sing along with her. We dare you to try to not break out any dance moves during the chorus! Catchy from beginning to end, you’ll find this song stuck in your head. Even if you don’t know any other words than “I don’t know why / oh, I don’t know why,” we bet you’ll be humming the tune throughout the day.

Images provided by Island Records

Take a listen here, watch the official video here, and be sure to keep your eyes and ears on NOTD! We sure will be!

Categories
Music News Reviews

PUBLIC Follows Up Hit Single “Make You Mine” with “Honey In The Summer”

PUBLIC released a new single today titled “Honey In The Summer,” following up their hit “Make You Mine,” which you’ve most definitely heard on TikTok. And if you’ve been searching for the perfect anthem for this summer, look no further! You might not think that such a song could exist for a season tainted with coronavirus, but PUBLIC succeeded regardless.

“Honey In The Summer” proves that we can do this social distancing thing and still have a great time. “But I don’t have a sweetheart to hold when I’m alone / So I just grab my keys and snag my favorite CD / Cruisin’ and it’s just me in the front seat” sings lead vocalist John Vaughan, reminding us that listening to this song at full blast, windows down, and an open road ahead is all we really need.

Photos provided by Island Records

But don’t just listen to the song! You should also check out the lyric video. Giving us a lovely mix of live action and graphics, our animated band cruises down the road in a bright yellow SUV. It makes you want to hop in the car with PUBLIC as a cute little animated version of yourself and belt out the lyrics alongside them!

So what are you waiting for? Go listen to “Honey In The Summer,” watch the video, and then head out to your car to welcome the summer season!

Categories
Interviews Music News

Artist Interview: Jaden Gray

Crowdsurfer: What has your life been like since the end of Fourth Ave?

Jaden Gray: It has been bittersweet. It’s been bitter only because we departed and went our own ways, and it wasn’t like it was fun to leave. It was just that we all came to a point where we were like it was time to conclude Fourth Ave, but not conclude the friendship of Fourth Ave, and pursue our solo careers. And since then it’s been a great time, I’ve been living my best life. As a solo artist, these past few months have been outstanding.

CS: You just released a new single called “Love Happy.” How does it feel to put out a song as a solo artist?

JG: Whoo! So when the boys and I put our EP out it was mind-blowing. But when it came to my own song, that was only me on the track, a song that I helped produce, helped write, I was blown away. I just never thought that I’d be here and this age. I thought I’d get there eventually, but not at 19. It’s an amazing thing to see all the fans respond and do videos and sing and already know the words and it’s only been out for a week!

CS: Is the vibe of Love Happy what we can expect your sound to be in your future music?

JG: Very much, and then not at all. Let me break that down. The sound that I’m going for is Pop R&B. My voice is the R&B effect, but the music is going to be pop. So for the next few songs I’m gonna experiment, and whichever the fans gravitate to most that’s the sound I’m gonna stick to. My next song is gonna be more along the lines of Pop Latin vibe. But Love Happy really feels good so I really hope the fans stay in that lane because I love making music that makes you wanna dance.

CS: Can you tell us anything about this next song? When are we gonna hear it?

JG: I was shooting to put the song out this month but being that the studios are closed down due to quarantine, I’m going to put it out in May. I’ve been talking to a few people and there will possibly be a feature on there as well, and me singing a little bit of Spanish as well. That’s all I can give. But it’s gonna be a vibe!

CS: Well, now I’m excited about it and sad we have to wait a month! And on the topic of things getting pushed back, I know this year is up in the air, but what are your plans for 2020?

JG: Before all of this happened I was scheduled to do Coachella, I was scheduled to go on the tour with Kanye West, I had four solo shows in a matter of two weeks which I’ve never done on my own… And all of that got pushed back. It didn’t get cancelled, but pushed back. As of right now those are the things that are solidified and I’m planning on this year!

Photos by James Johnson

CS: What’s your writing process like?

JG: My writing process is different. I’m not the best writer, that’s just not my strength yet. So usually when I’m in a room writing a song, I usually bring a couple other people in because I can tell people a story and I just need them to put it in a writing format. Once they start doing that, it’s easy for me to say “How about we change this to this?” But songwriting is something I’ve really been working on perfecting probably since Boy Band since we met Justin Trantor. He gave me so many different tips on how to write songs and poems that can turn into songs. I have a passion for good writing and I want to perfect it and get to the point where I can do it.

CS: What have you been doing in quarantine? Anything exciting?

JG: The past two weeks I think I’ve been working out, going to sleep, working out, probably eating, and then going back to sleep. But today is the first day since the beginning of quarantine that I’ve had things to do! I’ve been productive for the whole day and will be for the rest of the weekend. This quarantine has been pretty rough but I’m listening to what they’re saying and I’m staying in!

Photos by James Johnson

CS: I’m glad to hear it! And to wrap this up I have a few questions from fans on Twitter!  The first is: what’s your favorite place you’ve traveled to? – @kayaxstevens

JG: Oh my! My favorite, favorite place I’ve traveled to is for sure Paris. The first time I went was quick because we had a show that night and had to be in Italy the next day. But the last time I went a couple months ago, I was there for five days. Three days were working with Kanye and the other two days were free. Being able to have two full days in Paris was amazing and beautiful and everything I imagined.

CS: If you weren’t singing, what occupation could you see yourself going to school for? -@victorigiddings

JG: Acting, modeling, and styling! I have a passion for all three of those. And then I love to build, I’d build a whole house if I could. So I’d do that just for fun.

CS: Just build a house for fun?

JG: Why not? And then I’m gonna live in it!

CS: Last question: what is your favorite part of the music making process? -@hello_dreamerr

JG: That’s a good one. My favorite part is literally the last thing in my process which is I’ll listen to the song and then ask everything extra, the runs and harmonies, to be stripped out and just listen to the plain vocal. Then I’ll go back into the room and add everything I loved the most and just go!

CS: Anything else you’d like to add?

JG: Go stream “Love Happy” on all music outlets and follow my Instagram @jadenbgray!

Categories
Concert Photography

Silversun Pickups at Brooklyn Steel

Silversun Pickups played two nights in a row at Brooklyn Steel, and we were at the first one on March 5, 2020. They opened with “Neon Wound” and played other crowd favorites such as “Panic Switch” and “Nightlight.” Fans all around could be seen dancing like crazy and, or course, screaming every word. Check out the gallery for photos from the night!

Photos by Lauren Hayes

Categories
Concert Photography

The New Regime at Brooklyn Steel

The New Regime played in NYC on March 5, 2020, the first of a two-night run at Brooklyn Steel. The dark, moody lighting set the tone and we were treated to a longer opening set, which I certainly wasn’t opposed to. The New Regime ended on “Heart Mind Body & Soul,” which is a song I strongly suggest you take a listen to if you’ve never heard it before!

Photos by Lauren Hayes

Categories
Concert Photography

PUBLIC at Webster Hall

PUBLIC opened up the final show on the Band of Brothers tour and certainly kicked it off with energy! Take a look at the pictures below from the show and if you haven’t already, read our interview with the band here.

Photos by Lauren Hayes