Home » Blog, Music

Q & A With Musician Keaton Simons

by Erin Darling 23 November 2011 426 views No Comment E-mail Erin Darling

He’s an accomplished singer, songwriter, composer, producer, musical director, guitarist, pianist — and he’s passionate about finding new ways to share it all with his audience. Keaton Simons is a multifaceted musician who has worked with artists like Jason Mraz, Hanson, and most recently, American Idol alum Didi Benami.

I had the chance to talk to Keaton Simons about upcoming projects, collaborations and his views on the changing face of the music industry. For more on Keaton Simons check him out on Facebook, and be sure to download your copy of “If I Hadn’t Forgotten” on iTunes.

Q. You’re involved in so many different things and projects. What are you working on now?

A. I’m working on a number of different things. I’ve started doing a bit more production, working on fun projects on my own. My main thing is I am running this PledgeMusic campaign to promote my new album.

Q. Sounds great. What’s PledgeMusic?

A. It’s like Kickstarter. A lot of great artists are doing it. It’s basically an artist/audience partnership. You create a goal for yourself whether it’s to make an album or EP. I had already made an album with (producer) Mikal Blue and wanted to take the next step, independently, so I decided to do it through PledgeMusic. In my case it’s a unique situation because the album is already recorded, so we are focusing on marketing, and other aspects that the public doesn’t usually get to see or become involved in. Most pledge campaigns are to fund the recording process. So, now is the next step which is deciding the final sequence of the album, determining the album artwork, media campaigns and touring. It’s great having my fans be a part of the process, whether they want to be involved or just be observers of the process.

For a pledge of 10 bucks you get the album and exclusive videos and stuff like that. Also, there’s a charity tie-in for every PledgeMusic campaign so some of my profits will go to Falling Whistles, and NaturalChild.org .

Q. What made you decide to put your project on PledgeMusic in the first place?

A. They actually came to me, it was very cool. We set up a meeting and made it happen. A lot of people that I know have done them and run some really successful campaigns. I made this album and I’ve been shopping it around to labels but in that process I realized that I’d gone way too long without making new music. I thought…this is ridiculous, I just need to get some damn music out there. Gotta get back to the core of it. I love making music and sharing it with people, so this is the most effective way I can do that.

Q. Speaking of sharing music and content, I see you’re really active on YouTube. How often do you post to YouTube or use social media?

A. A few times a week. I’m always trying to come up with new stuff. My girlfriend is on top of it, man. It’s so much easier when you have partnership! But I post as consistently as I can. I recently did an online concert at stageit.com . A lot of my friends have done them, like Lisa Loeb. It’s an online streaming concert where you can set up a ticket price and play/

Q. That’s amazing. It’s incredible how technology has really changed the face of the music industry…

A. It’s revolutionized it completely. I’ve been in the industry for so long, through so many revolutionary changes. When I first started performing music there was no YouTube or Twitter. It was on the tail end of people making bootleg cassette tapes. Then illegal downloading went out of control. I’ve worked with major labels and watched them totally freak out…It’s fascinating. There are so many challenges and obstacles that rapid change can create, but it also creates opportunities. There are so many opportunities for young artists you just have to work your ass off.

It’s such a different world. Years ago, in order to make a recording, you had to get a studio and find a producer. But now it’s a totally different game. Why would I wait for the whole process and prevent releasing new music? It’s the opposite of what I’m trying to accomplish.

Q. What are you trying to accomplish?

A. I’ve got pretty massive goals and aspirations but I love music and I love sharing it with people. My universe has always been very music centric. When I get caught up in record labels and the industry, I get back to my center. The more music I can create and the more people I can share it with, the better. That’s where all of my goals for success in the music business come from.

Q. Do you have any advice for aspiring songwriters/performers trying to do the same thing?

A. People ask me that a lot and my best advice is really indulge in your authenticity. Don’t try to emulate someone else because the world in general is abundant as long as everyone maintains their authentic, unique self. Whatever’s really you, just be that, and there will be room for you. Work hard and remember why you do it. Do it because you love music. All the ups and downs will be easier to handle if you love the process. That gets you through. if your focus is right, it will point you in the direction you need to go.

Q. You’ve worked with a lot of interesting artists in the past and currently, what are some of your favorite collaborations?

A. One of my favorites was the song I wrote with Jason Mraz, he’s been a great friend and a really supportive person. I appreciate him tremendously and I love that song. One of my best friends is an upcoming performing, Jay Ollero, he’s fantastic and we’ve written some really cool stuff together. I appreciate all of the collaborations.

I recently had a song, “If I Hadn’t Forgotten” featured on “Private Practice.” I wrote it with Jason Reeves, he’s best known for writing with Colbie Caillat. He’s wonderful…The episode opens with Kate Walsh in a therapy session, and she has a song stuck in her head and she starts signing the lyrics to my song…It was insane placement! I wanted to maximize the exposure so I recorded a duet with a friend of mine, Didi Benami, in order to release it in addition to the original version of the song. That was a fun collaboration too, but so much of music is about sharing and I love sharing with people and playing with people.

It’s a fun journey and I love the collaboration between myself, other artists and the audience. so get involved and you won’t be sorry.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)
Loading ... Loading ...

Leave your response!

Add your comment below, or trackback from your own site. You can also subscribe to these comments via RSS.

Be nice. Keep it clean. Stay on topic. No spam.

You can use these tags:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

This is a Gravatar-enabled weblog. To get your own globally-recognized-avatar, please register at Gravatar.