Interview: Jon Worthy

Published on 4 May 2022 at 08:20

1: How did you decide on the name, “Jon Worthy"?

Easiest question ever…it’s my real name! People always ask me if Worthy is my real last name and yes it is!

2: What inspires you to create?

A lot of it is just an innate desire within me to create music, songs, art, because I love to. It just feels natural to try and create music so I do it. Other times it’s hearing a song or a lyric that really resonates with me. When a song or a lyric hits me deep in the heart it really drives me to try and create something similar and have other people feel that same emotion. And a lot of the time it is real life experiences that drive me to create music. For me, music is like a form of therapy so being able to write lyrics and then create the landscape of music to accompany it is very therapeutic. 

3: What advice would you give to someone who wants to be in a creative profession?

Be yourself. It’s already hard to feel comfortable always being yourself, but throw in TikTok, Instagram, and all the other social media apps where everyone is so fake it’s extremely overwhelming to think you can stand out just by being yourself. But I think people truly resonate with people when they see authenticity. So much of social media is being a copy cat and trying to hop on to a trend. That idea may have worked originally because it was coming from a place of authenticity, but when you are simply copying someone else’s idea, there is no creativity or originality in that and I think for the most part people can see through that. 

4: Do you feel open minded about what you listen to? Do you like going out of your comfort zone?

If I am being honest, I am so singularly focused on creating my music and the work for hire music I create that I have become a terrible music listener. I know it sounds awful, but with my life totally consumed by creating my music and helping others create their music, my escape is not to listen to more music. I do like when friends show me new music so I can get a sense of what people are listening to, but for me it’s hard to continue being an avid music listener and still constantly creating music.

5: What outlets do you find out about music from? (Record stores, magazines, samplers, etc.)

I hear about a lot of artists via social media. They just pop up on my feed. It seems like the artists that pop up on my Spotify and YouTube are mostly bigger established artists so I don’t look to that much anymore to discover new artists. Also, just the shows that I play I always end up going back after the show and listening to the other bands catalogue.

6: What is your favorite format to listen to music on? (CD, Vinyl, etc.)

It used to be CD. My dad used to belong to a monthly CD club where he would get to pick a couple albums each month to be delivered to our house so I naturally ended up borrowing a lot of those CD’s and that’s where a lot of those albums became my foundation for music. One day I will for sure be getting a vinyl record player!

7: How do you feel the internet has impacted the music business?

I think the internet has opened the door to so many artists and musicians that would never have gotten a second glance by anyone. It is an instant audience of billions of people and you can’t underestimate that. It’s still extremely difficult to break through, but the internet gives everyone a shot. I know personally, over half the opportunities and experiences I’ve had from music would not have happened without the internet. It is an amazing networking platform and meeting place. One downside is it has caused a lot of saturation, but there are plenty of fans out there to win over that everyone has a chance. 

8: Who was the first band/artist that became your favorite band?

I started playing the guitar because of seeing Behind the Music: Guns N' Roses so I would say they were initially my favorite band. However, Pearl Jam eventually became and remains my favorite band. The way they always did what they wanted to do without giving in to any outside influences is super admirable. They did it their way and that’s a big reason they have had so much success. I have listened to many a Pearl Jam songs on repeat to get through a tough time in my life. Eddie Vedder’s lyrics are so deep and relatable, and their music has inspired my songwriting and life in a big way. 

9: Who would you most like to collaborate with?

I’d say Jack Antonoff. Over the past couple years, I’ve gone away from recording in a studio as a band and have been producing myself or working with one other producer to build my songs from the ground up. It’s so much fun and allows you to really control every element of the song. I think with Jack Antonoff it would be a blast to shoot ideas back and forth and add all kinds of crazy sounds to a song. He is a great songwriter too so I think we would have some badass collaborations.  

10: What was the inspiration for your song “Give It Up”?

Give It Up started out as an instrumental track that I had made and then I eventually came up with the “give it up up up up” part. That’s all I had. And then I had a session with my friend River Ezra and I showed him the track and he really liked it so we decided to build out the song more. I laid down a bass line for the verse and then River took over and wrote a lot of the verses lyrically and melodically. And then we both came up with that pre-chorus drop part. I think River had been watching some type of reality show at the time and was inspired to write a song about someone that has everything but no matter what it’s never enough. So, the song takes you on a journey of someone still searching even though they have obtained success by society’s standards. And then in the chorus that person realizes they can figure this thing out

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