Artist to Watch: Joel Matthew
Artist to Watch: Joel Matthew
by Victoria Grijalva Ochoa
photo from Soundcloud
The reason up-and-coming artist Joel Matthew is going to be your new favorite? He knows what he wants and he’s going to create exactly that.
With a sound emulating all of his favorites, such as Michael Jackson and Kanye West, Matthew is diving into the music scene with his debut EP, Glow. Providing an eclectic sound, Glow is full of slick verses and smooth beat transitions. As far as his inspiration for creating a sound like this, Matthew says, “My taste in music is all over the place, so I wanted to make something I would listen to.” Matthew is taking the concept of “if it doesn’t already exist, make it yourself” to a whole new level, by creating his own sound with a mixture of hip hop, alternative, and pop. When introducing his EP, Matthew went on to say, “It’s a mix of icons that I look up to, I just put it all into one thing to create my whole idea.”
When it comes to what’s most important in his music, there isn’t a single factor that comes above the rest. “The level of quality, originality, and artistry should be at a certain level,” Matthew explains. To him, there are multiple more factors that come into play still, such as originality, honesty, production, quality, inspiration, and diversity. Just in his debut EP, the songs range from the upbeat and fast-paced, as heard in “The City,” his debut single from Glow, to the softer sounds, like “Cold Day.” “Each of them are a different feeling, a different emotion,” says Matthew. In fact, he explains that since his music is mostly personal, it is written based on what he’s feeling at the time. The range of his music isn’t only found in each song’s sounds, but also in their meaning. “I have a song on there about my dog dying and then there’s one about my fears, I guess, where I get what I want but it’s not what I thought it was going to be.” To Matthew it’s not only about making each song personal, but also about writing it in a perspective where anyone can apply it to different parts of life. “I want the sound and all to be there, but I also want the music to fit certain moments in your life,” Matthew says. The range and diversity is also evident when asked what his favorite song off of the EP was, as he couldn’t settle on one. “I like all of them for different reasons.”
To celebrate the release of his debut EP, Matthew hosted a listening event where he invited friends, family, and press for the first listen. “I only wanted a handful of people who I think are really cool to listen to it,” Matthew explains. The event itself was a testament to Matthew’s artistry. When talking about the detail behind the event, Matthew says, “I wanted the visuals to be crazy, I wanted the lights to be crazy, I wanted all that stuff. It took a lot of planning, a lot of work, but it came out exactly what I wanted.”
Whether it comes to the planning for his events, the music, or even his life in general, Matthew is very particular with what he wants and what he does. The way Matthew explains it, “I’m a person that when I have an idea and it’s something that I want to do, there is no other option, that’s what it’s going to be.” Matthew has a vision of what he wants in his music and in his career, so much so that he has a timeline of how he expects his future to play out. His vision doesn’t contradict his realism, though, “There’s a certain age where I want to be Jay Z, or Kanye level. I want to be signed, I want to be that guy, but I also want to continue to make the music I want to make. I have to be able to create a certain niche for myself in order to allow for something that large to work.”
With a vision this large, and the desire for originality, Matthew is only just getting started. Matthew says, “Art isn’t the only venture I want to go into.” He’s looking to make more music, work in film, and own his very own movie theater in the future. Having already started working on his next EP, Matthew says, “There’s a lot of big plans that I have in life and this is the first step to all of them.”
You can purchase his EP, Tuesday, November 17, 2015 through his website.
And, you can find Joel Matthew on:
Youtube: Joel Matthew
Soundcloud: Joel Matthew