These days when life is less than ordinary and many have been struggling we need strong empowerment to go on. Powerless, the brand new single by Jason Rylan is a help in need, a good art, a vivid take on getting back to our feet. We took the time to have an in-depth conversation on the role of music and art these days, humanity’s future and some fun. Read the thoughts of Jason Rylan and leave a note, a message, a hello to him at the end!
And while you are at it, listen to Powerless:
Music Authentic: Welcome to Music Authentic! Let’s start with our site traditional question: How did you sleep last night?
Jason Rylan: Too funny! I slept okay. I usually follow a regular schedule and sometimes put on a meditation/healing frequency video before bed. I have sleep apnea and sometimes experience sleep paralysis. So, good rest is extremely important to me.
Music Authentic: And what did you last cook?
Jason Rylan: Breakfast! Although, these days I’m back to protein shakes, oatmeal, or egg whites. I absolutely love to cook and have people over for dinner. I haven’t really done much of that in the last year with the shutdowns and restrictions. I’m definitely overdue for having friends over.
Music Authentic: I hear you. We all need some decent eatout in a park, too… In so many places all around the planet weather seems to be quite different from what it is usually – what about at yours?
Jason Rylan: In Vegas, we typically have two seasons: Hot and Cold with a few short months of nice weather in between. The past few days have been pretty windy. I’m definitely not looking forward to the Summer inferno which is just a few months from now.
Music Authentic: I’ve just listened to your brand new single, Powerless, and that comes with real presence and inner truth: you refuse to fear as you say in it. So many are in despair all around and it’s been elevated for more than a year now. How do you find your strength in the everyday life?
Jason Rylan: I think it’s important to keep a regular schedule, try to stay active, and take the small wins whenever we can. Like many people, I haven’t really been working since last March. It’s definitely been a challenge with finding the new “normal”. However, the small wins add up. I think it was Admiral William H. McRaven who gave a famous graduation speech about little things that we can do to change our life, like making the bed every morning, etc… I think it’s also important to be present and maintain balance. We don’t need to succumb to all of the world’s problems, nor let everything consume us. We can absolutely set healthy boundaries with anything from relationships with family and friends to work situations, and so on. Sometimes it’s easier said than done. I think I find everyday strength with Gratitude and service. I’ve done more volunteer work off and on through the Pandemic as well. Prior Covid, the U.S. has had this culture that glamourizes over working and over commitment as if it’s some mythical badge of honor. In my opinion, it’s not healthy and illustrates a lack of balance in life. Of course, we have to do what it takes to make a living and grow, but not when it comes at the expense of a person’s mental, physical, or spiritual wellness. Sure, it’s good to carpool but sometimes a person needs to stay in their own lane.
Music Authentic: These are quite wise words and views. Well, you’ve been around for longer than most from the Tik-Tok generation are alive. Your songwriting has evolved throughout the years. How do you feel now, when streaming is a number game, when the attention span is so little, what are the ways to stay relevant and be heard and seen?
Jason Rylan: Wow! I’m feeling pretty old with this question, but I’m looking forward to those Senior discounts. I totally get that people in general have developed very short attention spans, especially the younger generation. This is definitely the “Scroll, Swipe, Next” generation. Unfortunately, the numbers game is often fake and anyone can buy a million streams or followers. I think, most people can see through that. I was just talking to a friend who is a program director at a Top 40 radio station about this same exact thing. In my opinion, people are constantly searching for fulfillment, commonality, acceptance, and togetherness. I think, good content with substance will always be relevant and stand out. Look at Madonna with Madame X and her song “God Control”; such an amazing piece of work and sadly all too relevant.
Music Authentic: What do you think the role of art and music is these days?
Jason Rylan: Sadly, I think art and music is devalued and underappreciated these days. I saw a friend post a rebuttal for artists being ‘non-essential’ workers whereas they create the music when someone is out shopping, at a restaurant, or at the gym. Or the teams of artists that create the movies and shows for people to watch when they are home and need to unwind. Music is a universal language that brings people together. Historically, music is the soundtrack of the world. A friend once asked me when I was going to make any “real” money with music. I guess, she simply didn’t understand that music is so much more than money, fame, or accolades. For me, music is the challenge of a blank canvas with new song or album, new perspectives, impressions, and expressions. Hopefully, music touches lives through songs like Powerless, Strong, or Help is on the Way.
Music Authentic: Can songs still heal, save and show a different path to take?
Jason Rylan: In my opinion, absolutely! Music, Film, and any sort of art is a catharsis. Generally speaking, the world we live in often has unhealthy mixed messages such as ‘boys don’t cry’ or get emotional, or you have to work yourself to death to get ahead, etc… The illusion of perfection is ubiquitous and the path is never ending when trying to keep up with the Joneses. My mom’s cousin wrote 13 Reasons.
Music Authentic: “Ain’t Nobody”, “It’s Gonna Get Better” or “Powerless”?
Jason Rylan: Wow! Ain’t Nobody and It Gets Better seem like a lifetime ago. All three songs have similar messaging and empowering concepts. There was a music reviewer with a chip on his shoulder that absolutely trashed Ain’t Nobody because one of the lyrics stated ‘no time for your addiction’. He zeroed in on that one line and basically said that it made me callous to people suffering from drug addiction. He wasn’t getting the song at all. What I meant is that often we have to place boundaries on any negative addiction such as food, overworking, and even negative relationships with family or friends. Some people are hopelessly addicted to drama, negativity, and pain. In my opinion, it’s important to put a healthy distance from that. To answer the question tho, at this stage in my life I resonate more with Powerless. I think, it represents how I have evolved or grown as an artist and a person. I’d like to think the song is a reflection of the times with the many challenges we are all facing.
Music Authentic: Again, good thoughts for the ones with ears to hear. So, Las Vegas… What makes it special for you aside from the Strip?
Jason Rylan: Honestly, I rarely go to the Strip or Downtown. However, I went to the Strip today and got rear ended which totally sucked. I also went to dinner about a week ago at Fashion Show Mall across from Wynn Hotel. The Strip was absolutely bare on a Thursday night around 9pm with very little foot traffic. It’s really sad and alarming. Unfortunately, I think it’s going to take some time for the city to fully recover. Over the years, I would say that the people I’ve met and friends that I’ve made really make Vegas special. Vegas is also where my parents got married, divorced, and where my Father passed away. I miss California and try to visit when I can. There is just an amazing energy along the coast.
Music Authentic: The time will come when people stop being afraid and be free again to meet and enjoy life, maybe in a few months, maybe next year. What are your concert plans? I’m sure Red Rocks would be one dream… any other?
Jason Rylan: I haven’t really been much of a live player, but that could change in the future. I’ve had discussions with a few bands off and on. One performed regularly at House of Blues at Mandalay Bay and also The Joint which was at Hard Rock Hotel before it was sold to Virgin. Red Rock would be awesome with the natural acoustics, for sure! I think, it would be cool to one day be able to perform at a place like T-Mobile arena.
Music Authentic: It seems a Mars colony gets closer minute by minute. Would you take the journey to become the first professional performer there?
Jason Rylan: Sure, I’d love to go to Mars, but I’m sure that there are many more well-established artists on the list ahead of me. Hey, did you know you can buy an acre of land on Mars through Groupon?! 🙂
Music Authentic: Really? I guess soon we can grow potatoes online then and watch them grow in an app… 😉 Superheroes are really the part of the American culture. Whom of them you would prefer to play? And by the way, who do you think the actual heroes are?
Jason Rylan: Interesting question… I’ve never really thought that I would play a Superhero, but I’ve always wanted to be the voice behind a Disney animated character and/or a song for Disney. One of my friend’s Daughter landed a part in Disney’s Raya and The Last Dragon. The world is filled with many heroes. I wholeheartedly believe that everyone is connected with purpose from Janitors and Porters to CEO’s and Presidents of large Corporations. For me, a true hero can be anyone that steps up to meet a challenge. For some, that could mean a career in healthcare, for others it can be volunteer work, and for some it can be going through another round of chemo or getting out of bed that day. I think, it’s important to understand and accept that people have different struggles, challenges, values, and priorities.
Music Authentic: Bono and The Edge, Elton John and Paul McCartney are in the same café, to which table would you go for a meet and greet?
Jason Rylan: A tough decision, for sure! Well, this is Vegas and anything is possible. One of my friends interviewed Elton John a few years ago. Paul McCartney performed at the Fifth Anniversary for Cirque Du Soleil’s Love. Over the years, there have been various artists and celebrities drop by the clubs such as Janet Jackson, Lady Gaga, Cher, Madonna, Britney Spears, etc… I’m pretty sure that I would have to go with Paul McCartney or I would be disowned by my mom and she would be really pissed if she wasn’t able to meet him as well. She’s a huge Beatles fan and has wanted me to cover Black Bird for a few years now. I have a few reimagined cover songs on this next album that I’m finalizing.
Music Authentic: Good taste… and Paul McCartney’s latest album is simply brilliant, isn’t it? Who are the greatest influences in your life these days?
Jason Rylan: I am mostly influenced by compassion and gratitude these days. I have some family members with some pretty serious medical conditions. I have many musical influences, but lately I’ve been listening to Alanis Morissette, Dua Lipa, and Lady Gaga.
Music Authentic: Which is a bigger dream for you: winning a Grammy, getting into Top20, or maybe using your stage to effectively support the ones behind the rainbow, the ones with less hope and more needs?
Jason Rylan: Joey Welz from Canadian American Records nominated me for a Grammy a few years ago for my work on my last single, Strong. Of course, it takes major sales and momentum to make it to the Top Five nominations that we actually see (dominated mostly by major labels). I would be down for almost anything that would help the music grow into a position to help others more. I would say that my biggest “dream” would be to have an awesome song placement in a feature film at just the right moment; something like Strong, Help is on the Way, or Powerless. Of course, to actually win a Grammy or land Top 20 on billboard would be beyond amazing.
Music Authentic: I do hope and wish people will hear “Powerless” in their heart and act upon not to be afraid anymore. As we say goodbye, is there a message you’d like to encourage the readers and your fans?
Jason Rylan: I hope more people find and resonate with Powerless as well. I’d like to think that it’s an empowering song that transcends the Pandemic and applies to many Life situations. For people that like the song, please download, share, and comment. The comments mean a lot to me. I find it amazing when a listener writes a nice little note through one of the music sites or subscribes to the mailing list. The last thing I would like to share with people are a few words my Dad used to say to me anytime that I felt like things were falling apart. Just four little words that that helped put things back into perspective for me: “This too shall pass”.
website: Jason Rylan