Episode #447 Behind The Music with Jacqueline Jax http://tobtr.com/9894775
GETTING TO KNOW JANAPRIYAN LEVINE
by Jacqueline Jax host of A.V.A Live Radio
Shift My Pitch Up (It’s Christmas Morning):
My songs and videos often begin as several loose threads that come together throughout the production. I was visiting my hometown of Queens in New York City and there were some creepy battery operated plastic dolls that were like babies on cell phones that lit up and giggled and even crawled. They were on display in front of a small shop in Jackson Heights. That store has been there selling wind up toys and other plastic crap for as long as I can remember. So naturally I took some footage of the crawling creepies with my phone. I ended up shooting all the wind up toys and animated plastic effigies that we came across during that visit. That footage ended up in the video. The laughing, beeping, phone ringing sounds of the dolls are even used in the song. Some time later I was cutting up some old school hip hop beats and threw down some balkan style middle eastern melody on the banjo. I asked my girlfriend to come in and play the same lick on the oboe which really beefed out the song and made the melody pop.
Then it was Christmas eve and I was alone in the studio. The only place I would want to be on Christmas eve. As a joke I started singing about how I wanted santa to bring me a vocoder for Christmas. I threw that in there as well, added some synth and asked my friend to throw down some heavy metals riffs and I think the whole thing was done and up on youtube by the day after Christmas.
You can hear a lot of variety and some big risk taking in my music. From instrumental acoustic ballads with an african groove, to irish music fused with hip hop and indian music. Lots of organic acoustic instruments and loop based stuff as well. oboes, tablas, banjos, guitars, jaw harp, Indian raagas, and lots of intricate, technical melodies and lots of wild poly rhythm and deep grooves.
Nevada City, Ca.
Its a quiet sleepy mountain town but there are a number of festivals that come through here and many well known professional musicians that lay low here.
I’ve been very lucky to be successful as a professional musician. I play finger style guitar, and I can produce and make videos and play lots of instruments and teach music. I have put a lot of time into developing a number of skills. So It hasn’t been too hard for me. Technology and the internet give everyone a level playing ground to reach new audiences. At the same time its hard because the inter webs are inundated with everyone trying to get everyone else to come click on their thing or subscribe to their thing. Fewer artists want to know how to write a good song and instead want to know how to be marketing experts. That kind of advertising competition sets the bar low. so folks looking for fresh new music have to sift through the mediocrity. There are plenty of platforms for artists to be heard but there is more to it. Folks may not be targeting the right audience or they might be adapting their music to fit an audience. I think an artists job is to always refine their craft, write better songs, put on a great performance. Be a great teacher. Be ambitious.
If you can advertise well do it. If you don’t know anything about marketing or social media just hire someone else to do that for you. You shouldn’t have go waste your time doing that. If you are a song writer you should be writing songs.
My music is for anyone who is feeling angry…so I can play my guitar and help them chill out a little bit, find some peace.
Websites and pages:
Folks can become a patron for my music, videos and other rewards (like tutorials) at patreon. https://www.patreon.com/janapriyan
and for just the song Shift My Pitch up go to:
I am giving it away for free. Folks can download it from soundcloud.