Meet the Young Tennessee Native Turning Heads With His Modern Take on R&B
Why is no one talking about Jon Waltz? He may only have four songs on Spotify but he’s no stranger to the scene. Jon has been releasing music on Soundcloud from as early as what seems to be 2013. He has released two EP’s- Airways Blvd. and Alyss, as well as a few singles.
His first release, Bang (Left My Home) which dates back to 2013 and appears on both Airways Blvd. and Alyss, paints the haunting picture of what seems to be drug use that ends in suicide. Of the line in the song that goes “But if I die because of that, will they still kinda miss us?”, Jon said via Genius, “If i’m a good person who makes mistakes, will my mistakes overshadow the good i’ve done. Will you look at me as a monster or a saint because of my drugs?”. The lyrics of this song are so multi-faceted that it’s hard to draw just one meaning from it. While intentional or not, this is one of those tracks that can be interpreted as whatever the listener needs it to be interpreted as, to be able to relate to it.
Alyss, released in 2014, is said to be based loosely on Alice in Wonderland. Since Airways Blvd. has been removed from all streaming platforms including Youtube, and Alyss is the only EP still able to be located, it is the first time we are able to fully hear the capacity of Jon’s talent and ability to seamlessly switch between rapping and singing. Alyss starts off with the track Villain/Fright, and listening to it, it’s hard not to draw parallels between Jon Waltz and Drake. Villain/Fright is followed by the tracks College Girl, I’m Your Dog, Bang (Left Me Home), Alyss, and On Everything. Listen to the full EP here.
“You are a melody
I hear you all the time
It really gets to me
It’s always on my mind
You are my favorite song
Your love is justified”
Jon returned to the scene a year later and released the sort-of love song Anna, produced by Brockhampton’s Romil Hemnani, where he foregoes rapping and solely sings. A few months later came Justified, where Jon returns to blending rapping and singing- creating a smooth, melodic, upbeat love song. In October, came Riot, a track with awesome funk/soul vibes. Jon broke down the meaning behind Riot on Genius, saying “Riot’ started as a song about rich kids in Calabasas — affluent minorities conscious about being affluent minorities — and then turned into a song about generational values and internal conflict. It’s about who I was five years go versus who I am today. I had a moment last week where I said to myself, This really sounds like the song I needed to hear when I was younger.” This year, Jon’s back with Backstreets, a catchy R&B-like single with a slightly different sound than his previous releases. Could his recent release finally mean a new album or at the very least an EP? Follow Jon’s links below.
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Atlanta-based music editor and interviewer who loves the idea of introducing people to great artists they may not have heard of yet.
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