Music Promotions recently caught up with singer song writer Jason Rylan about his musical journey, his single Strong for the Route 91 harvest Festival tragedy, his future music plans and more.
Can you start by telling everyone more about your single Strong?
I started writing Strong last August, a few months prior to the Route 91 Harvest Festival tragedy. My cousin, Denon was killed by a Seventeen-year-old who stole his parent’s car. He was street racing at 95mph to impress some girls and hit her car. She was like a little sister growing up. It was a complete shock for the entire family. She would never see her two daughters 16th birthdays, graduations, get married. It was a very emotional time.
A few months later, the Route 91 tragedy happened here in Vegas. Everyone I know here in Vegas was stunned and the entire town was very emotional. I was still grieving along with many other family members and starting thinking about the hundreds or rather thousands of people that lost a husband, wife, mother, father, brother, sister, a friend…So many people lost loved ones. There many tears across the entire valley.
Yet, through all of this turmoil the Las Vegas community came together in such a selfless way that I’ve never seen before. In a city that thrives on gambling, greed, glamour, and lust, so many people were donating blood, time, water & food, shelter, funds. There were vigils and people simply trying to comfort each other. I was deeply moved and touched by how truly awe inspiring this was. I think that’s when “Strong” really started to flourish and manifest further.
Strong is your tribute song to the Route 91 harvest Festival tragedy, can you tell everyone more about this tribute and how anyone can get involved?
Shortly after the tragedy, Las Vegas became “#VegasStrong.” All across the valley, there were businesses, billboards, t-shirts, and pretty much everyone showing the strength of the community tagged with “Vegas Strong.” I wanted to produce a song that memorialized that strength and solidarity, and hopefully inspire others to continue in some form. For me, Strong became a tribute to Vegas and hopefully a way to channel some of that Strength to those who are affected by a heavy loss. I was struggling with the chorus with the song I was originally writing specifically for Denon, but decided to make some changes.
For anyone that would like to get involved with the tribute song, they can download the music and share it with friends and family. Word of mouth is really the best. There is a free copy of the song available on my website (www.jasonrylan.rocks) for anyone that would like to sign up for my mailing list. Or the single is also available 10.1.18 on iTunes, Amazon, or any major music distribution channel.
Strong features Sham Lewis how did you decide to work together on this song?
Sham has been featured on several tracks that I’ve released on previous albums. I think our vocals blend and harmonize well together. When I started editing Strong, I really felt that his unique harmonies would make the song fuller. Sham is an amazing vocalist and local entertainer.
Any more duets together?
On my last album, The Charm, Sham was featured on a few songs such as “Help is on the Way” and a licensed cover of “I still haven’t found what I’m looking for.” On this new album that I’m hoping to release next Spring, Sham is featured on Strong and a licensed cover of Stand By Me. Stand By Me is available on 10.1.18 along with the release of Strong.
How would you describe your music sound?
I’d like to think that my music is a unique blend of pop, rock, and electronica.
You’ve already recorded three albums, have you a new album coming soon? And how does your new music compare to your previous songs?
Yes, I am currently working on a fourth album called “Heathen.” Friends and family have already given me some slack over the title by commenting that it’s not a heavy metal or hard rock album. It’s kind of like the same obstacles I’ve received in the entertainment industry for not conforming to one “style” or genre. One music promoter commented that they couldn’t work with me because my brand needed work. I was told that I had a country look, but also Electronica/EDM look, and my music styles were all over the place (EDM, Rock, Adult contemporary, etc.). They couldn’t market a brand or artist with such mixed messages. My reply was that decades ago no one thought that “Electronica” or “EDM” would be a music genre. Who knew that Trap would manifest? Pop evolved as an all-inclusive genre for popular music. At the end of the day, either people like the music and the artist or they don’t.
For those that don’t know, traditionally before the modern negative connotation of the word, a Heathen was someone that did not really follow a widely held religion such as Judaism or Christianity. My musical concept behind Heathen, is one that does not follow widely held music. So, not a heavy metal or hard rock album and not a social deviant either. The album is simply following a different musical path…
I think Heathen is turning out to be a much stronger and more polished album compared to my previous works. I’d like to think it’s more refined. Similar to my previous albums, there are elements of pop, rock, electronica, and EDM. I’d like to think that they are done in such a way that they hint at a mainstream likeability. With the release of Strong, I hope people will catch on to some of the positive aspects of the music. Of course, only time will tell. Other songs include “Wish You Were Mine” which is in rotation for a radio release this Fall and “Gratitude.”
Who inspires you as songwriter?
People inspire me. People who are strong during difficult times. People who are also positive, kind, graceful, and display a high level of integrity.
What music are you currently listening to?
Sadly, I haven’t been listening to much new music lately or watching any television programs. I’ve been knee deep in releasing Strong and still working on finalizing this new album.
If your music was on the sound track to any film what would yours be?
The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly?
I’m really not sure. One of my life long “bucket list” items and dreams has been to have one of my songs featured in a major motion picture.
Have you any touring plans? Any plans to tour the UK and Europe?
I would LOVE to go on tour. There are no plans at the moment, but you never know. I would need a solid touring partnership in order to effectively pull that off.
What is coming next for you?
Recently, I was voted Top 100 Men of Vegas and will be featured on the cover of My Vegas magazine. The magazine releases in October. I feel very honored. Strong will be featured in the “Ball in to Fall” radio release by Canadian American records. The CEO has stated his intention of nominating the song for a Grammy (quote below). Of course, that nomination needs to be accepted by NARAS, and even if accepted the odds are astronomical. It is nice to know that there that are people very touched and moved by the song which is the ultimate goal for any artist.
“Strong” by Jason Rylan, has such a powerful message it deserves to entered for a GRAMMY AND WHEN WE RELEASE IT THIS FALL TO 10,000 RADIO STATIONS ALL OVER THE WORLD THROUGH OUT CONTRACT WITH AIRPLAY DIRECT, That’s what I intend to do. I will enter it for Record of the Year. WE HAVE SIGNED A GREAT YOUNG TALENT TO OUR LEGENDARY Canadian American Label, AND I LOOK FOR GREAT THINGS TO
COME ABOUT WITH HIS MUSIC”…. Joey Welz CEO CANADIAN AMERICAN RECORDS
Anything else you’d like to add?
I would like to add is that all of my work has been self-produced and self-financed with majority as original songs written by me. I’m definitely interested in working with more people in the industry.