Rock Nostalgia Unleashed. Heavy guitar-driven rock music designed to make you headbang and reflect. That’s how I would describe Vandarth. I was raised on garage rock. I wish I could tell you I was born in a garage but I at least hung out there a lot. Garages, basements, hole-in-the-wall concert venues and craft breweries are the places I call home. Why? This is where rock lives.
I’d like to invite you to unleash your rock nostalgia and watch this short video. It’s a quick way to share in our love of heavy rock ‘n roll and give you a glimpse behind my music.
I can literally feel a change in my energy level and mood when I hear a Foo Fighters song start playing in a restaurant. Why is that? Rock music has always been the underdog, but in the 90’s it briefly ruled the world. I was young when I first heard it. The style was loud, wild and untamed. There’s something inside all of us that resonates with this. Rock wakes up something inside of us. It fills us with energy and almost demands a physical response (hence headbanging). The music screams, “Let it out!”Rock makes us believe that we can defy the “norm” and go where no one has gone before.
There’s one thing I know for sure; one specific album planted the dream of learning guitar and joining a rock band in my head at an early age. Without that one album, I’m not sure if I would have ever become a musician. My first album The Essentials would have never been written. I would have never played in a rock band, moved to Texas or Kansas. In fact, I do not know who I would be, where I would be living, or what my career would be if I had never heard this album. What was the album that set me on a path that would change the rest of my life?
Weezer’s Blue Album
In 1994, my older brother came home with the very first Weezer album, which was known as “The Blue Album.” Hearing that album for the first time seriously turned my world upside down. Maybe you’ve heard the songs Undone (Sweater Song), Say It Ain’t So, and my personal favorite, My Name Is Jonas.
If you remember that time period, the wave of garage rock that was coming out was unbelievable. I was only in 1st grade, but I thought the songs on that first Weezer album were the greatest thing I’d ever heard in my life. I can remember learning the lyrics to the songs and singing them at school, thinking girls would think I was cool. HAH!
It’s pretty funny looking back, but there was actually one other girl in my class who knew the songs too and she’d sing them with me. Sometimes I wonder what ever happened to her. I credit that first Weezer album for having planted the dream of being in a rock band in my head. It’d still be a few years before I learned to play guitar, but I do remember trying to make my own drum set with empty ice cream containers. It was ridiculous but fun. Worst-sounding drum set ever! Haha.
If you haven’t heard it yet, check out the song below titled Jump! from The Essentials. I bet you’ll be able to hear my Weezer influence in this track!
Sometimes I wonder, what if my brother had never brought that album home? It’s fascinating to think about. Many more rock bands would shape my songwriting, but you can still hear the Weezer influence on my album The Essentials. I learned to write powerful vocal harmonies from songs like My Name Is Jonas and Holiday. I learned to write vulnerable and open lyrics from songs like The World Has Turned and No One Else. I learned to create harmonized guitar solos and epic outros from Only In Dreams. These songs gave me the tools to help me become the songwriter I am today. I would even go so far as to say these rock songs shaped how I see the world and how I view relationships.
It might sound crazy, but maybe you know what I’m talking about when I say the music we listen to shapes us. It can happen in ways we can’t even see until much later. I’m wondering what your “what if” album is. What album or band changed your life? Or inspired you to pick up an instrument? Let me know in the comments below!