Indie Rocker, Jon Mullane, Keeps The Hits Coming

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JOHN MULLANE is an award-winning, Billboard-charting singer, songwriter and performer originally hailing from Halifax, Canada. He has gained international acclaim and attention through his music, as his songs have been heard on commercial radio stations, featured in numerous television shows, films, and commercials, and played at international sporting events. Heralded for his strong melodic sense, Jon defines what an artist is… embracing an unbridled passion for and dedication to his music, combined with an authenticity that connects him with his fans. We caught up with Jon to talk about the re-release of his summer hit, “SUN IN THE SUMMERTIME.”

When did you first realize you had an interest in music?

I was 12 and my family had just moved to a new neighborhood where I discovered a young rock band practicing in an old barn, which happened to be a teen hangout at the time. Once I heard and experienced the energy coming from the guitars and drums I knew I had to be a part of that, and it wasn’t long after that I bought a bass guitar and began learning how to play.

Jon Mullane – Photo by: Joe Dolan

Did you join a band?

I tried to join the band I heard in the barn but they wouldn’t have me. I wasn’t good enough. LOL. A couple of years later though, I formed my own band in high school.

When did your start writing songs?

I dabbled with songwriting in my late teens but didn’t get serious about it till about 10 years later. Soon after that, I set up a small home studio and sent some songs to the CBC and my local rock station Q104 FM. I placed in the top five in both of their emerging songwriter/band contests. That was reaffirming for me to continue my path as a songwriter.

What was your first single?

It was called “One More Chance” and it received lots of commercial radio play across Canada. I re-recorded that song and included it on my album “The Source” several years later.

Photo by: Bruce Goldberg

You’re an amazing self-promoter? How did that come about?

It was really through necessity. I worked with different managers and agents over the years, but came to the realization that no one was as passionate and could promote my music as well as me, so I learned about the business and went on to develop relationships within the industry.

You’ve spent some time in Los Angeles. Why did you leave?

There was a lot I loved about L.A, but I spent so much time driving there that I found that challenging and and draining on the psyche. Even just going to a short songwriting session took half the day. There’s also a financial disincentive to live there when you convert Canadian money into US dollars. That being said, given the right circumstances, I could see myself living there again at some point in the future.

Photo by: Martin Noel

Tell us about the re-release of your single, “Sun in the Summertime.”

When I was growing up, I always loved summer songs and that Summer music vibe a la The Beach Boys and their contemporaries. The opportunity to write one came about just as we were coming out of the pandemic. I felt that perhaps the world was ready for a fun, upbeat, summer song that just made you feel good for three minutes, like they did in the past.  I wrote it with my friend, a talented Toronto-based songwriter Jim Gelcer, and it was produced by my longtime collaborator Creighton Doane. I’m really happy sonically with how it sounds and the vibe of it. It seems to be really connecting with people when they hear it.

How has the music business changed and are you achieving your goals in Nova Scotia?

The music business of today really doesn’t resemble anything like the music business when I entered it. While the distribution of music has completely opened up, and is a great thing, it also increased the amount of music that is coming out on a daily basis, so there’s a lot of noise to climb above to get heard. But that also allows an artist like me to live in Nova Scotia and still connect with the world. It doesn’t really matter now where you live, like it did a few years back. When I returned to Canada, my focus was to reconnect and rebuild my regional fan base and travel out to do bigger shows as well as open up other musical opportunities. Shortly after that the pandemic started so it’s only in the last year and a half that I have been able to move towards achieving that goal again.

Photo by: Suzie Jagger Richards

You’ve become an independent artist with your own platform to release and promote your music. Do you recommend that to other artists, or do you think they should first try the conventional way, such as find a label try and get on the radio, etc.

I don’t think there are many options these days for getting signed, it’s become almost elitist. I think the best thing to do whether you try for that or not is to write, record and promote your music through the many online and social media and social media channels we have now. Try and get some traction on your own and build an audience, and then if you succeed the industry will show up and offer you opportunities.

Do you still perform live?

I love performing live, there’s an amazing energy you get when you’re on stage and the audience is connecting with the music.

What new projects are you currently working on?

I’m getting ready to do some concerts with my band in Atlantic Canada over the summer and I’m  working on a couple of new songs. I’m also re-launching my summer single and music video for the Summer of ‘24. As I mentioned earlier, it’s called “The Sun in the Summertime” and it’s from my EP California. And I’ll be going back to Los Angeles and Nashville a bit later this year.

Thanks for the catch-up, Jon.

It’s been my pleasure.

For more info on Jon Mullane click: HERE.

See the Sun in the Summertime video HERE


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