Along with approximately 359,954 other people (and that's not counting their other social media followers), you may be familiar with a little YouTube team called Blimey Cow and their series "Messy Mondays". I don't even remember when I started following them, but I think it was back in 2011 because I remember being amused when I learned later on that several of the people I met in Nashville knew them personally. Between their videos that balance hilarity and conviction better than just about anything I've ever seen online, and how friendly and appreciative they were when it came to their fans, I knew that I wanted to keep following Josh, Jordan, and Kelli in whatever their endeavors were in the future.
So when Jordan announced that he was officially making his own album, I knew I wanted to be a part, so I pledged on his Kickstarter. Doing so got me early access to the album, titled "Long Drive," and let me tell you, it's better than I could have ever imagined it would be.
Jordan's vocals entrance you from the first note of the first song, as if his voice is washing effortlessly over the music. Each song flows flawlessly from one to the next, as if it really is one story told in pieces over a single car ride. There is a similar smoothness in the instrumentation of each song that binds them all together, yet each song is still completely unique in its mood and tone. With the start of each song, I never once felt like I'd heard anything like it before, but there was a constant sense of comfort and serenity throughout the entire album. However, even in the midst of the feelings of comfort and calm, I still caught myself wanting to dance to his music. There are very few bands or artists that I know of that can strike that balance so well.
Knowing and loving The Vespers for several years is probably at least partially to blame for my love of supporting independent artists, but I can 100% honestly tell you that even if I hadn't known about this album in advance to support it on Kickstarter, I would still have bought it if I found it on iTunes or heard about it through a friend. I definitely got my money's worth on my pledge, but more than that, listening to Jordan's album just makes me happy. And isn't that what we all want when we listen to music, to feel something? If we don't feel something when we hear it, it's just noise, not music. Jordan definitely made music, and pretty incredible music to boot.
And as an added bonus, I was able to email Jordan some questions to post here on the blog as an interview. :)
You have a beautiful voice, Jordan! Have you taken voice lessons, or is that all just natural talent?
J: Wow, thank you! I took voice lessons leading up to having to record vocals for the album.
What made you decide to do an album with vocals? The original music I heard from you was just instrumental, and I loved that, as well.
J: I wanted to do an album with vocals because it just felt right. I don't really know what else to say, but when I was trying to figure out about doing a fully instrumental album, I just felt like I needed to add lyrics to a lot of the songs.
My favorite track on the album is "Every Detail." What was the inspiration for that song?
J: The inspiration for that song was just summer nights where you like someone and have no worries and nothing seems like it could ever go wrong.
Which song was the most difficult for you to create both instrumentation and lyrics?
J: Either Separation or Don't Let Me Go were both difficult to come up with the lyrics for. If we're talking about instrumentation though, maybe Long Drive or Feet of Shadows.
Which one was the easiest?
J: The song that probably came to me the fastest was Home.
Do you have a favorite song on the album?
J: My favorite song kind of changes depending on what time of day I'm listening to it, but I'd probably have to go with Need Each Other.
Were there any artists or bands that were inspiration for you going into these songs?
J: Yeah, definitely Jimmy Eat World, Ryan Adams, and Relient K. Those are the ones I can think of off the top of my head.
When did you start playing the guitar?
J: I probably started playing guitar like 8 years ago or so.
Have you always wanted to make an album, or was this at one point just a hobby for you?
J: Playing guitar and making up songs still just feels like a hobby to me honestly, and I kind of like it like that. I haven't always wanted to make an album, but when I feel like I have something to say, then I write it down and overtime that accumulates into an album.
How was the experience3 of having Josh help you throughout the creation of the album?
J: It was great! Josh is very good at planning things out and executing. Without Josh, this album would have never happened. We've always worked well together, so it was awesome to have something new to work on together.
Why did you name the album "Long Drive"? I've always loved learning why artists and bands pick the album names they do, so I'm curious.
J: I picked "Long Drive" because the whole album kind of revolves around a car ride, and because I realized that that was happening as I was writing it, I named it after the song that naturally encompassed that the best.
Do you have dreams or plans for another album, or are you still basking in the enjoyment of finishing this one?
J: I can't say that I haven't thought about it. I definitely have, but yes, I'm still enjoying this album and the aftermath of its completion. It's nice to just have some time where I can relax and make up songs without the stress of having a due date, even though a due date sometimes makes the creative juices flow a lot better. Possibly at some point if enough songs are created to release a full length album again, then I'll make another one.
Go get Jordan Taylor's debut album "Long Drive" on iTunes, check out his website messyjordan.com, and say hi to him on Twitter @Messy_Jordan.