Deep beneath Jonathan Something’s vintage-inspired rock lies the complexity and beauty of the human psyche.
The Brooklyn, Conn., singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer explores the dichotomy between a person’s emotionally turbulent interior and their serene façade on his latest release, “Outlandish Poetica,” which dropped last week via Solitaire Recordings.
Throughout “Outlandish Poetica’s” honest, eclectic and thought-provoking nine tracks, Something, aka Jon Searles, purposefully mixes upbeat, electrified ‘60s-fueled music with ironic, contemplative lyrics. It’s a clever and humorous way to musically and lyrically characterize the growing conflict most people experience when they mask their true self.
“I think I’m sort of a self-deprecating human being as a whole, and I think it’s an interesting vibe. I think a lot of people take themselves a little too seriously when it comes to music,” Searles said. “I like stuff that I can get a good laugh out of, especially stuff with dry humor, and on the surface level, wouldn’t necessarily be funny, but when you take it into the context of how they’re saying and what they’re saying, it packs a little punch.”
LOS ANGELES – Brilliant-colored fireworks exploded over Dodger Stadium as Fleetwood Mac closed out their two-hour set for The Classic West Sunday night.
Hues of red, green, yellow and blue popped over the crowd while the legendary band performed a spirited version of “Don’t Stop.”
The “Rumours” hit single served as the perfect ending to The Classic West, a new two-day classic rock music festival based in Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium featuring the Eagles, Steely Dan, Journey, The Doobie Brothers and Earth, Wind & Fire.
Curated by Irving Azoff in response to last year’s profitable Desert Trip, The Classic West is the ultimate recipe for whipping up a memorable dish of music nostalgia – early 1970s classic and folk rock fused with jazz-inspired tunes, southern California harmonies, groovy R&B, disco and arena rock anthems.
It also served as the perfect time musical time machine for nearly 50,000 attendees and me. I was ready to board a mythical aircraft similar to the one featured on the cover of Journey’s 1981 album, “Escape,” and travel back to a bygone era.
It was time to leave, but something kept me there.
I turned around to catch a final glimpse of Mick Fleetwood. He saw me, smiled and blurted out, “Lindsey and Christine are going to tour this year. You should go see them!”
“I will!” I said. My emphatic response was my way of promising Fleetwood.
Fleetwood shared the perfect parting words as Brian and I left the reception room at the Hilton Austin Hotel on March 15. We had traveled to Austin to see Fleetwood discuss his upcoming book, “Love That Burns – A Chronicle of Fleetwood Mac,” at SXSW.
After the session, we attended a private reception hosted by Genesis Publications to meet Fleetwood and receive his autograph. It was a true honor to meet one of my five musical heroes.
Fleetwood’s comments were in reference to a recent announcement about Lindsey Buckingham and Christine McVie teaming up for a new album and tour as a duo.
I left the room smiling because my musical hero had ended the conversation on the right note — encouraging me to see the other members of Fleetwood Mac in concert was utterly perfect. For years, it felt like I had known Fleetwood. In that final moment, it felt like he knew me.
Four months later, I was ready to attend not one, but two Buckingham McVie shows – July 2 at Detroit’s Fox Theatre and July 6 at Soaring Eagle Casino and Resort in Mount Pleasant, Mich.
Local Natives know how to properly channel the primal energy of Fleetwood’s Mac “Tusk.”
The Los Angeles-based indie rock band recently covered “Tusk” as part of Spotify’s “Music Happens Here” video series, which highlights how “local culture has inspired music throughout history” and kicks off with an inaugural 26-minute episode about Los Angeles.
“To say Fleetwood Mac has a huge influence on our music is a bit of an understatement,” the band wrote March 21 on their Facebook page. “As part of a new Spotify series called Music Happens Here, we covered Tusk in the same room, same studio as Fleetwood Mac covered it.”
I was elated the moment I read those words on Local Natives’ Facebook page. If you’re a Fleetwood Mac fan, then it’s not stretch to like Local Natives’ music, which features lush harmonies, adventurous percussion and multiple singer-songwriters.
My mom retreated to her bedroom to unearth a classic rock album from her 1970s era vinyl collection.
She flipped through the dusty Linda Ronstadt, Carly Simon and Eagles albums to locate Fleetwood Mac’s “Rumours.”
There it was. The original copy she had purchased when I was a baby.
She quickly grabbed the album and brought it downstairs to play during a family listening party one night in April 1987. She plopped the album down on my grandma’s large wooden stereo system, which featured a 1972 era record player inside and was adorned with large golden knobs.
My brother, Steve, and I requested the listening party after picking up a copy of Fleetwood Mac’s “Tango in the Night.” We wanted to hear the band’s mega hit album from a decade earlier in its entirety.
The photo featured Empire of the Sun’s Luke Steele demonstrating a guitar chord for Buckingham in a Los Angeles. I smiled instantly at the thought of a newer artist working with a legendary guitarist and singer like Buckingham.
For me, music abundantly fills my life with a repertoire of endless possibilities.
There’s always a new artist, song or album to study, digest and experience. Each musical encounter slowly satisfies my hunger until the next one comes along. I live for musical abundance, and there’s still more for me to see, hear and do.
Each week, my life is a flurry of concerts, albums, family, friends and professional commitments. The energy I draw from concerts and albums replenishes me in a way I never thought possible. I recharge the most when I can combine music and people together. It’s truly what makes me tick.
One of my greatest joys is to discover new musical talent that leaves a sonic imprint in my mind. I constantly monitor satellite radio and social media for new artists, songs and albums. I keep mental and physical lists of artists and albums handy when I visit record stores and merch tables at concerts.
As a music aficionado, it’s not uncommon for me to randomly hear my favorite parts of different songs in my head throughout the day. Tony Banks’ iconic piano solo in the beginning and middle of Genesis’ “Firth of Fifth” is on repeat. Mick Fleetwood’s gentle drumming in Fleetwood Mac’s “Sara” is another. I hope these beautiful instrumentations never vanish from my mind.
My abundant love of music also allows me to draw musical connections between different artists. I often say to my husband that’s a Geddy Lee bass line or Steve Hackett guitar tap. It’s gratifying to form those connections and see how artists truly influence other musicians.
I just wish they all knew how much they influenced me.