I created the NJ Avant-Garde for my Online Journalism class at Rowan University. Even though this semester has come to a close and I no longer need to keep this blog going, I love what it has become and will definitely continue work on it.
Check out a few of my “greatest hits” so far:
Hey Market Riot plays in Glassboro: Jesse Riddle rocks a Tom Morello cover
Pour Soul acoustic performance on Radio NJ/AG: Aaron Smith plays live and talks real
AK47Million on Radio NJ/AG: Alex Kiedaisch talks about the style of his electronic music
Waiting at the Bus Stop: The Bus Stop Cafe in Pitman, NJ – Great coffee, great music, great people.
Sweet Dee is No Deadbeat!: DeAnna Munger talks promotion in todays music scene
I ran into Tyler Zlatkus at the Barrington Coffee House. He had been in town for the past week and was finishing up his stay by playing one last open mic. Just the night before he had played (and even hosted because Mike Romano didn’t show up) the open mic at The Treehouse Coffee Shop.
He just recently recorded his six song EP, Pendulum, featuring songs such as, “Puppet Man”, “Forget You” and the title track, “Pendulum” which can be found throughout the audio interview below.
Zlatkus started really getting into music during high school where he formed a band with a good friend of his called The Dimensions which he called, “more of a trippy, psychedelic band.” His friend, “looked just like Jimi Hendrix and played just like him so he couldn’t stand not playing any Hendrix covers.”
At the age of 17, straight out of high school, Zlatkus moved out to live on his own. “I’ve always been very independent,” he said. Living on his own wasn’t as easy as he thought it would be so he produced local bands in Washington to afford rent for a while.
He was living with Josh Jones at the time. They lived together for a year and created a few bands over that time period. Zlatkus became heavily influenced by the Beatles at this time and soon earned their entire catalogue.
Naturally, they started a Beatles cover band called British Export, which has gone on to be a three-time winner of the Liver Pool Beatles Fest in Europe. They played for the remainder of Zlatkus’s stay at their apartment. Ultimately, the two had a falling out and Zlatkus not only moved out but also left the band.
“I really enjoy playing music for people and letting them take the spotlight as well but my solo stuff is always just me,” he explained. “I wrote a lot of my older music when I was happy. My first album can be condensed down to one girl, just about,” he said while laughing.
“About five days before I came here to Jersey I played an open mic called the Mandolin Cafe. I met this producer named Anthony who needed studio musicians. So, I layed down some bass on a few tracks he already had and he offered to record my album [Pendulum] for free!”
Because of Zlatkus’s background with recording and producing, as well as his many instrumental talents, he basically created his entire album by himself. “He checked in on me in the studio here and there, but It was really all just me.”
He recorded his EP in only 5 days so that he would have something to sell when he came to New Jersey. Unfortunately, he did not prove to be a good salesman.
“I tried selling them here but no one will buy them so I’ve given about 30 away so far.”
He was asking only five dollars for the CD so I decided to buy one. After purchasing it I asked him how much it actually cost him to make the CD.
“It didn’t cost me anything [to record the album]. It was just five days of hard work. Plus, the whole, lifetime of learning an instrument and that’s a lot of work too.”
Every Thurday night, Scott ‘Trif’ Trifeletti runs the Wide Open Mic at the Barrington Coffee House. This open mic is always packed every week. Their website even says that the open mic runs from, “8pm until it’s over.”
I’ve always been a huge fan of the Barrington. The artists are always diverse and the coffee is always brewed right.
At the end of every open mic, usually around 12:15 or so, Trif gets a few artists to play together and have a jam session. I’ve joined in on a few end of night jams before. It’s one of the most unique open mic experience because it is always different artists from an array of genres.
This weeks artists did a fantastic job! Check out the slideshow below!
Rick McGuire & Michelle Biehl, ‘Color of Skies’ w/Gerry Thompson & Arthur Herrmann followed by Tyler Zlatkus (from WA!)
************ Known for the Best in Great LIVE Music! ************
Scheduled Friday and Saturday night shows @ The Barrington Coffeehouse
Reservations @ 856.573.7800 For Any Show Taken Anytime!
The food is always delicious! I went for a grilled cheese this time around.
The Treehouse has a very diverse group of musicians that have come in and out over the years. I had the pleasure of watching Willie Stavely perform his unique folk style. I caught up with him after his set and he gave me his card. It turns out he is also a very skilled carpenter that makes custom hand-carved wooden marionettes and dancing puppets.
The Tree house has such a warm and inviting environment that you immediately want to grab a cup of joe and stay awhile.
Stop by their website and check out the menu! Don’t miss their open mic every wednesday!
I had the pleasure of sitting down for an acoustic session with Aaron Smith of Pour Soul. He explains to me what Pour Soul’s motivation is and his lyrical style. He played for me two tracks that he plays with the band and also played a few of his original tracks.
As I wandered through the web today, I did a little research on the New Jersey music scene. I had no idea so many talented artists had come from this beautiful state. Here are just a few I found. Disregard the obvious ones and see which ones you didn’t know.
- Frank Sinatra
- The Four Seasons
- Bruce Springsteen
- Bon Jovi
- Whitney Houston
- My Chemical Romance
- The Smithereens
- Kool and the Gang
- James Moody
- Dizzy Gillespie
- The Sugarhill Gang
- Naughty By Nature
- Ice T
- The Fugees
- Queen Latifah
- Biz Markie
- Faith Evans
- Wyclef Jean
- Skid Row
- Dillinger Escape Plan
- The Misfits
- Bouncing Souls
- Streetlight Manifesto
- The Gaslight Anthem
- The Early November
- Hidden in Plain View
- Senses Fail
- Saves the Day
Alex Kiedaisch of AK47Million talks about his music and explains what music means to him.
Now playing on Radio NJ/AG:
All music ©AK47Million
* “Sounds Fun” featuring Matt Keane AKA Matty Bones