An interview with Jake X
We've come across this italian singer, songwriter and producer who recently started his solo career into pop music, after a decade of great accomplishments within another scenario. Welcome JaKe X! After a few months from kickstarting your solo career, how's it going?
I'm pretty happy about it. The two single edits were very well received, both in my country and abroad. I'm satisfied that people, whether they're listening with a professional ear or not, are noticing "something" that makes them like the music and come back for it. I guess this is one of the things that a songwriter and an author wishes most.
At Berklee they use to speak about the IVI of an artist which is his Identity, Vision and Intention. Can you tell us about your IVI?
As for my identity, I wish two points to sparkle above all: my very different musical background before this moment (metal music) and my personality, inside and outside the music. I'm a very easy going person that however tends to find peace in darkness, silence and solitude. I literally don't like too much light in my home, same as I don't like too many colors around myself. All this gives me a shadow that I've come to embrace and want to put into music. My vision is that the more I dig into myself as an artist, the better I become as human. It means undressing completely and constantly in order to be up and honor this call. I want my music to express the search and the concept I have of existence itself. My intention is to leave something to whoever I get in touch with. Whether it is by my music, my words, my attitude or simply being silent, I want to give back to the world as much as I can, after I felt so much peace and enthusiasm in filling myself while walking the pathway of art and music.
How do you get all this stuff into your music? Do you manage all by yourself or do you cowork with someone?
My first two edits were done completely by me. I've handled every aspect, from composition/arrangement to execution, production, mixing and mastering. I don't exclude at all being coworking though I must admit that it feels so great to give your thoughts a musical shape, look back and see the painting you did all by yourself. I try to keep well in mind the IVI concept and ask me all the time if I feel on or off the rails as I'm writing. Not because I consider that the rails are carved in the stone and can't be moved at all. It's simply cause it can be very easy to distract as you compose, perhaps you hear a sound you love and you might be led to develop an idea, but then you realize it's going nowhere, according to what you're trying to tell. So, I try to picture a landscape (sometimes literally) where I try to give all subjects a representation with the music.
By reading the lyrics of your songs plus hearing you speak now, I can't help but notice that the topics and the mindset is pretty "profound". Do you want to tell us a little more about your writings?
Ever since I started writing, I felt that lyrics along with the music, are like my children. If so, I want my children to be as beautiful as possible and the most representative of the father. I'm not saying that I can't conceive a lighter song; though I believe that I wouldn't feel happy if I wrote about my crazy weekend, how I met that girl and the world turned off etc. I do think pop ain't just for lighter topics. Anything (or almost) can be said; it's the how that matters.
What's being an artist like in your country? Was your course smooth?
Not at all. Although Italy is impregnated of art, it's not easy pursuing this path. I've been into music since the age of 8 and never stopped learning and improving my skills and knowledges. This doesn't always do the difference cause my country imports what's already sentenced as valuable or simply clones patterns of domestic successful artists. Renewal and artistic research isn't the best that italian music industry can do. Though, I don't know if maybe precisely because of this, I always felt a strong will not to give up under any circumstances. As something is harder to achieve, you grow stronger to bear the challenge.
When will we be able to see you live?
It should have been this year. The organization of the promotional tour was ongoing but the virus of course stopped everything. I don't know if there's a little chance for 2020 but I'll surely be ready for 2021.