American Opera is a indie-folk-rock project based out of Michigan. If you aren’t familiar with them yet, now is the time to get on. With a new album coming out and a new record contract, they are poised to be the next big thing in alternative rock music.
I was first introduced to John from Anerican Opera at Vans Warped Tour in 2015 and their live show is fantastic. It’s John on guitar and a foot pedal of some sort of percussion and a bassist. John was kind of enough to answer some questions for me. Check out his twitter account and purchase his music here.
Tell me about what this new record is about?
The new record is about a period of my life where the foundation of what I knew about life began to crack and crumble. I started over in a new city and state far from the home I knew. I lost family. I lost friends. I was starting over. It’s about the good and the bad. The fight between good and evil that exists inside all of us. It’s about finding that little glimmer of hope and chasing it down to see its light.
For those that aren’t familiar with you yet, what is your story?
I was inspired by my older brother to play the guitar. That lead to throwing shows in basements and rec halls. That lead to touring. I toured with an indie rock band for the better part of 8 years. Chasing down that dream. It fell apart in my hands so I started piecing it back together. All the roads I traveled with my best friends, I was traveling by myself. I started over and here we are. After 13 years, I signed my first deal with Spartan Records. I’m not sure if I’m stubborn or too dumb to quit or both. I’m just happy I’m still here.
Why the name American Opera?
I was inspired by a lyric by one of my favorite bands, Cold War Kids. American Opera is my life set to music.
What’s your go to movie on the road?
Unfortunately I don’t have much time for movies on the road. I’m the driver, tour manager, booking guy, merch dude, writer, and performer all in one. It doesn’t leave too much time for movies. But when I’m home my wife and I keep chipping away at IMDB’s Top 250 Films. Some of my favorite movies are Fargo, One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest, and Boyz in the Hood.
How important is touring and connecting with fans to you?
Aside from my wife and family, it is the most important thing to me. Ever since my first show, chasing that feeling of connection with people is one of the driving factors in my life. There’s nothing like the feeling that you get when you write a song in your room, then you record that song and release it, then you go and play that song at a show, and a couple hundred people sing the words and melody you wrote. There is NOTHING like that on this earth.
If you could compose a score for any movie, what would it be?
Oh jeez. I’m not sure I’m the kind of writer who could do an entire score but I would love to give it a go. Who knows? Maybe someday I’ll get the opportunity.
What movies do you see your music fitting in the best?
I’ve had my music featured in everything from dramas to fishing documentaries to a snowboarding movie. I think it could fit well in an indie film.
Thank you again to John from American Opera. Check them out on tour and keep your ears open for their new album. It’s gonna be special.