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June 18, 2022

Interview with Ethan Jewell

We had the pleasure of interviewing Ethan Jewell over Zoom video.

Ethan Jewell’s raw and emotional poetry is guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings. At only 19 years old, Ethan is pioneering his way through a new genre, which he likes to call...


We had the pleasure of interviewing Ethan Jewell over Zoom video.

Ethan Jewell’s raw and emotional poetry is guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings. At only 19 years old, Ethan is pioneering his way through a new genre, which he likes to call “Musical Poetry”. With elegant, carefully chosen words that blend perfectly with the delicate sound of his piano, Ethan aims to ignite intense emotion in anyone who dares to listen.

Ethan is still new to all of this- releasing his first songs only months after starting his Tiktok account in late 2019, he found inspiration to create in the people who took the time to listen and connect. Hardly two months after he began posting on the platform, his song “Bouquet” went viral- with the original video boasting 5 million+ views and the track at 4 million streams on Spotify and counting.

A passionate advocate for mental health awareness, Ethan has worked to create a space for others to share and understand their emotions- even when it’s difficult to do so.

“I simply want people to understand that they must feel their feelings, no matter how uncomfortable that may be”

Ethan is super excited to share his new single,"Why Am I Not Better".
Here's what he had to say about it:

"When I began making music several years ago, I also began my journey of mental health recovery. The difficult part about recovery is that it is often hard to see the progress you've made. I found myself asking, over and over again, “Why am I not better?”. After dealing with this frustration for months, I finally decided to turn it into art and create this song".


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Transcript

What's going on?! It is Adam. Welcome back to bringing it backwards. A podcast where both legendary and rising artists tell their own personal stories of how they achieve stardom. On this episode, we had a chance to hang out with Ethan Juul. Over zoom video, Ethan was born and raised just outside of Dallas, Texas. And he talks about how he got into music. Started playing piano at a very early age. Didn't end up writing songs until high school, but never showed them to anyone. After hearing a song from hobo Johnson on his drive home, it really hit him. And this way that he just wanted to hit a lot going on, he just wanted to kind of get it out and started writing poetry. 5 (1m 54s): He then took those poems and put them to compositions that he had written on his piano. His dad ends up walking by his room one day and he's doing that. And his dad's like, whoa, like, did you write that? And he said, yeah, his dad's into audio mixing and doing audio engineering. So he told them like, we should record the song. And now his dad has worked with him on all the recordings. He talks to us about that. Being vulnerable with some of the subjects that he's writing about in front of his dad, how one of his songs blew up on Tik TOK. And he didn't tell anyone about this. He was too nervous to even let people know at his high school that he was even releasing music. So he just put it out under a different name. And that song ends up blowing up on Tik TOK. 5 (2m 35s): People start seeing him on there for you page. And then it's like, oh my God, like, that's you, you did the song. So it's really, really a cool story. And he talks to us all about the new music he has coming out. You can watch our interview with Ethan Juul on our Facebook page and YouTube channel at bringing it backwards. It would be awesome if you subscribe to our channel like us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram, Twitter, and Tech-Talk at bringing back pod. And if you're listening to this on Spotify, apple music, Google podcasts, it would be incredible if you follow us there as well, and hook us up with a five star review. 6 (3m 8s): We'd appreciate your support. If you follow and subscribe to our podcasts, wherever you listen to podcasts, 5 (3m 14s): We're bringing it backwards with Ethan Juul. Hey, what's up Ethan? How are you, man? 7 (3m 19s): Hey, I'm doing well. How are you? 5 (3m 21s): I'm fantastic. I appreciate you doing this. 7 (3m 23s): Awesome. Yeah, of course my microphones sound okay. I'm kind of testing a new set up here. 5 (3m 27s): Yeah, no, it sounds great. 7 (3m 29s): Awesome. Perfect. Perfect. 5 (3m 33s): Cool. Well, I'm Adam and this is about you, your journey and music. And we'll talk about the, a new song. Why I'm not, why am I not better? And of course the success of bouquet and all that stuff 7 (3m 46s): Right on. It sounds great, Adam, I'm a I'm Ethan. 5 (3m 50s): He did read. Yeah. Nice to meet you as well. I did read you're from Dallas area. Is that 7 (3m 54s): Correct? Yeah. You got it. 5 (3m 56s): Talk to me about that a little bit apart. 7 (3m 59s): I'm a little bit north of Dallas and the like Plano area. 5 (4m 5s): I've my, the only thing I know about Dallas is playing out because my mom's side of the family basically moved there. All of them kind of migrated there after they were older and everything is 7 (4m 16s): <inaudible> great place to live. Yeah. Born and raised. Literally haven't left this area since the day I was born. So it just it's, you know, good, good place, good place. It's a good balance of city life, quiet life. You know, I, I love it. I love it out of here. 5 (4m 31s): Very cool. Very cool. Yeah. I remember going out there, I used to skateboard a lot and going out there in the summer and being like so bummed out because it was like 9 million degrees outside, dude. I like 15 minutes. And then it would be 7 (4m 43s): Skating has been my number one hobby for the last, like two years. I literally, I thought I broke my hand like a week ago. Luckily I just lost it really bad, but yeah, I've been skating so much and this area sucks for skating, especially in the summer. 5 (4m 57s): Yeah. It was brutal because your schools are inside too. Like I grew up in San Diego in California and the schools were outside. So like going there and like all the stuff we used to skate in the school, he jumped the fence and they had the best planners and everything. And then going there being like, oh, there's like nothing here, except for like this big asphalt parking lot. And it's way hot. And there was a skate park though. We went to when I was there and it was indoor and then have like, there's a little bit that was kind of outdoor. And like this garage, I don't even, even there anymore. 7 (5m 33s): I would have to 5 (5m 34s): 25 years ago. Yeah. I mean, it was so long ago that I can't even remember, but yeah, we used to go to Plano, you know, every couple of years. 7 (5m 43s): Cool. Right on. 5 (5m 44s): So we'll you, you grew up there. How did you get into music? 7 (5m 48s): Oh man. So it's funny. I never really planned on doing music. It was never really like, like, okay. So my entire life I've loved music right from, I I've been playing piano since I was four years old. I mean, it was just, it was always such a like integral part of my life, whether it was listening to music, playing music, all that, but nothing in my head ever really clicked. Like, yeah, I was going to do music. Cause it seemed like such an impossible goal in a way, you know, it was one of those things like that and acting where you tell people that you want to do it and you're kind of shot down. It's like, ah, it's come on. Whatever, what are the chances? Right. Sure, 5 (6m 27s): Sure. 7 (6m 28s): And so it never really was on the forefront of my mind, but probably starting from when I was 13 or 14, I started writing original pieces on the piano just for fun. And then it wasn't until I was probably 17. So a little over two years ago that I started writing lyrics to go with these compositions. And there was one day I was, I was playing one of these songs in my room, this room right here, actually. And my dad walks by, he walked by my room and he peeked his head and he goes, Hey man, did you, did you write that? I was like, Hey, I wrote that, you know, kind of no big deal. 7 (7m 9s): I didn't think anything of it. He was like, dude, you should record that. Like I think you've got something here. Oh 5 (7m 16s): Wow. 7 (7m 17s): Okay. And so it was a, the song was called sunset off of my first album and it's one of the three songs that I've sung in. So he had no idea about the poetry part of it. So then I was like, well, I got a few other songs. And so I played him snowglobe. I played on bouquet and he was just like, yeah, you've, you've got to do this. So I kinda just took the ball. I ran with it. I didn't expect anything of it. And then literally just one thing led to the next, a lot of people connected with it. A lot of people really found something within the music. And before I knew it, it was a full-time career thing just out of nowhere. 7 (7m 57s): It was so crazy. How, how quick life moved? 5 (8m 1s): That's so crazy. That was your dad and musical at all. I mean just pick up piano at four. 7 (8m 7s): Yeah. 5 (8m 8s): Puts you in that are pushing 7 (8m 10s): And he's, he's always been musical. He's never done it as a career back when he was, you know, in his twenties, he used to like play with a band. But other than that, he does like audio posts and stuff like that for podcasts, TV shows, that kind of thing. No. 5 (8m 29s): Cool. 7 (8m 30s): So he's actually my producer, which is really, really nice, even though he's never, he's never done it on a professional level. He's done it as a hobby. And so there was this beautiful level of connection between me and him. You know, we, we were always close, but this bond over music has brought us so much closer over the years because you know, he was like, all right, let's let's record. He was like, let me whip out my mic that I used to record on. When I was know 2017, we can, you know, we can start some drafts of we can. And so we were able to kind of just sit down with a, you know, an old keyboard that he had and a microphone and started doing some drafts. And then, you know, once we realized, oh shit, like we have something here then, you know, we started adding to the set up and buying more things, you know, kind of creating this studio space for us. 7 (9m 19s): So at the end of the day, man, I just, I got lucky that's more than anything. I mean, I just, I got super lucky and that, that, that, that doesn't go over my head. I, every day I'm so thankful. Cause everything just, it just lined up, you know, how it needed to, and it's been incredible. It really has been 5 (9m 39s): That's so cool. So, so your dad, like he does like posts audio production that he's like editing audio after it's been recorded and everything else. 7 (9m 48s): Yeah. So he's done a few spots for like commercials, podcasts, you know, that kind of stuff. 5 (9m 53s): Gotcha. So then you come and he's like recording you. So now it's like, okay, now I can engineer a session with my son and then I go through and probably produce it or edit it quite a bit there as well. That's cool. So yeah. What a thing to bond with your dad on so many years later? 7 (10m 8s): Yeah, it's been really awesome. I gotta say it's it wasn't always the most comfortable thing. There were a few songs that were super uncomfortable to record and I just wanted to leave the moment I recorded them. 5 (10m 21s): I was going to ask yeah. Being vulnerable in front of your dad. Right. And like, yeah. Instead of just presenting the song or handing them like a recording of it, it's like, he's there, you're doing multiple takes. He's going to probably ask you about the lyrics and yeah. Okay. So talk to me about that a little bit. 7 (10m 38s): That, I mean, that created a whole, a whole new level of vulnerability and it, it, it became a bit of a challenge. I was once again, lucky to have a open and accepting dad, but at the same time I came across this challenge where we would go into record in the studio and I would find myself kind of questioning the songs and being like, do I really want to say these things in front of my own father? Because at the end of the day, I didn't want to worry. And that was my biggest concern. I didn't want to worry him. Yeah. So there's another layer added to it and going into the second album where there were a couple of, a couple of The song, the, the, the, the lyrical elements were, were, were heavy. 7 (11m 35s): There were songs such as dreams where I pretty much straight up, just talked about, about battle with suicidal thoughts and, you know, things such as self-harm, which I try to be very open about my music. Cause those are real things that real people struggle with. There was a concern and I didn't want my dad be worried about me. So it eventually came down to, I had to sit down with them. All right, there's the moody lighting. I had to sit down with him and I had to say, listen, I understand that these lyrics may be concerning, but I need you to understand that, you know, this is having an impact. And you know, these are real things I've struggled with. You know, I was like, I'll be honest with you. 7 (12m 17s): I'm not going to sugar coat it, but this is more good than bad. You know, this helps me, this helps other people. And so it's still uncomfortable, but we have this mutual understanding of this is how it has to be in a way, you know, this is, this is for the better at the end of the day. And you know, there, there have been a few songs that I've put off recording just because of how heavy they are. But we, we, we have kind of broken through that barrier in a way. And it all came down to just, you know, honest communication and being like, listen, I, I get that. You're probably going to be concerned about this, but it's, it's part of the art and that's part of what I do. 7 (12m 59s): And we're just going to have to come to terms with that at the end of the day, 5 (13m 3s): Would you say, well, I've got a few questions here. So first question is when you confide in your dad with those thoughts in the lyrics to the songs, was he like, ah, we need to get you, you know, a psychiatrist, we should put you out there. Like, was that even like the, was that the first thing he thought or when he just kind of listened to you? Right. How did that ha like, yeah, but how did he react? 7 (13m 26s): Well, it's, it's, it's never been a w like, we have to do this for you. Okay. It's been really nice though. He's always kind of had a, It's more of a, is there anything more that I can do is how he came to it because I've been in and out of therapy for two and a half years now, pretty much ever since I started doing music, I realized, wow, this is, this is heavy shit. You know, I, I need, I need to have another form of processing that isn't just music. And so w w what it came down to, I mean, it's, it's really been a blessing. He just, every few months almost would kind of check in and be like, Hey, like, is this doing enough? Are you good? 7 (14m 7s): Cause I mean, a lot of these songs, they are concerning. And I understand that, you know, I understand that the topics are real and hearing somebody talk about them is not, it's not something to be taken lightly and he he's never taken it lightly. And so, yeah, it was, it was always left up to me of course, because you know, pretty much the moment I turned 18 and became an adult was hands-off, but it was always checking in and being like, are you getting the help that you needed? And the answer was always yes for me. 5 (14m 42s): Okay. So, yeah, that's nice to know, like, it's good to hear like him coming to you and dusty, just checking in every once in a while, like exactly. You know, 7 (14m 51s): And that's just what I needed. Anytime I was struggling with something, it was always nice to kind of be like, okay, like this guy's, you know, he's got my back 5 (15m 2s): With that as well. Like those songs that you talked about not being able to record yet, or you talk about in front of you, you know, if you were in a studio with a producer that wasn't your dad, would that be something that you'd be willing to share? Or is it something that you're like, I don't even want him to hear him yet. Like we need to get there. 7 (15m 22s): I, I think I would be. I think, I think, I think I would share it. Yeah, I think, and I'll always live by this. So when I was in high school, I did public speaking a lot. I was, I was in speech and debate and that's something that I totally planned to do in the future. I love public speaking, but something that I observed is it is infinitely easier to talk to a room full of 200 strangers than it is to talk to a room of 10 close friends and family. It is 1 million times easier to talk to people that you don't know, and that you won't see again, you don't worry about judgment. 7 (16m 5s): You don't worry about what they think as much. You know, it's, it's just all in every aspect. It is easier. I think that concept kind of applies, you know, cause if, if, if I had a producer who was a stranger, they would be that there would be a stranger and I would be able to not see them at the end of the day, I would leave the session, wash my hands of it and then come back for the next one, you know, restart. However, I, I would be missing a layer of creative intimacy that I don't think I could find in a stranger because I care about this music, which makes my dad care about this music. 7 (16m 55s): And so we have this awesome creative flow where it, I mean, it doesn't matter what, what the song is at this point, you know, we've overcome the barriers with that, but he, he he's got this drive because he sees that within me to make these songs as beautiful and as creative and as expressive as possible. And I just, I really don't think I could find that within a stranger. And so it's, it's all a balance really at the end of the day where it's like, although yes, it can be uncomfortable at times. It's uncomfortable for a good reason. You know, all the best things in life are often uncomfortable. You know, some of the best things are on the other side of fear or failure or uncomfortableness. 7 (17m 38s): And so, yeah, there really is a balance to it and it's like, okay, although this is a little bit uncomfortable, I know that he is going to care and he's going to put his all into this because he sees how much I care. And so 5 (17m 51s): Sure you feel like maybe you wouldn't get the same reward with, if you like. Yeah. You'd be able to get the song out, but maybe it wouldn't be as good because there's not the connection 7 (18m 1s): There. Exactly. Yeah. 5 (18m 2s): That makes sense. 7 (18m 3s): I know in a weird way, I think I th I think that little bit of hesitation that I feel can almost make the recordings feel more real because in the same way, I would be hesitant to talk about these feelings with a friend in, in, in the way that I'm hesitant to record them. It almost makes it more genuine in a weird way. 5 (18m 29s): No, for sure. Yeah. You're definitely being even more vulnerable. It probably comes across in the recording. Like not like you're not only being vulnerable to whoever, you know, the producer may be, or, or just in general people hearing the lyrics to your songs. But like now you've got to, you know, say these things in and present the song to your parents. Who's going to be listening to them directly. And, you know, yeah. It, it just adds it, like you said, a whole nother layer of vulnerability between the recording process. 7 (18m 59s): Yeah, definitely. 5 (19m 0s): I find it interesting. Cause you're the first person I've heard it because I bring this up a lot that said, you know, you'd much rather talk to a room full of 200 strangers then, you know, 10 people that are your peers, which I always find a funny word. I talked, I've interviewed thousands of people. And what's interesting to me is a lot of people's story begins with the first time I ever played a show or played for people was like at my talent show or was it, I played the high school, blah, blah, blah. And I'm thinking like that to me is like the most terrifying thing ever. Cause not only are you playing to all your peers, but say, you know, you've got to return to school the next day or finish class for the rest of the day. And you could either be the target, you know, you could possibly be the target of everybody, right. 5 (19m 44s): If you screw up or you can just make your life miserable for the next X amount of years and to go into like a coffee shop or a place that, you know, you don't know anyone, then if you suck or screw up, it's like, well, see you guys later. I'm never going to see you again. 7 (19m 59s): Exactly. 5 (19m 60s): I always just find it so crazy that people end up, you know, that's the first show. Yeah. We did the talent show, but I, I mean, I guess it comes with where you can play or you know, it all 7 (20m 11s): Wherever opportunity. Right. 5 (20m 12s): You're right. Exactly. But it's just so interesting that I haven't heard anyone bring it up that way, but so tell me, you said just a couple of years ago is when you started writing lyrics, but they're more they're poems, right? It's like music to, to poems. And was there a reason you decided to start writing poetry or writing these lyrics out? Like what made you decide to go? You know, I should just try to write, 7 (20m 38s): Right. So it's funny. I, I never liked poetry all through high school. I took a few English classes. We get to the poetry section. I'd be rolling my eyes. I'm like, this is so boring. Oh my gosh. These 300 year old poems. I mean, I'm fighting to stay awake during these, which is ironic. Then let's see my, it was my senior year. I believe 17. And I was driving home from school. I was listening to music and a song by hobo Johnson came on, who? 7 (21m 19s): Yeah, I've heard of them. Awesome. Yeah. You know, he makes that rhythmic spoken word style that really, I, I have yet to find somebody else who does it quite like him, but I heard the song, it was called Creve core one. I think that's how you pronounce it. That's off of his first album. And it is this beautiful piece that combines literally just gentle piano with this super expressive, emotional performance where he's, you know, from my understanding, talking about a relationship with a girl who is struggling with personal things and, you know, she doesn't have time for this relationship and he just wants to be there for her, but she won't quite let him in. 7 (22m 6s): And it's this beautiful story. And I think that that is what interests me so much about it. I listened to it on repeat the whole way home. And every single time, I, it felt like it was stabbing me in the chest every time. And I mean, I was crying and it was just, it was so powerful for whatever reason in that moment. I don't know if it was because I could relate to it at the time or what, but something just, it was, it was the storytelling, it was the emotion, it was the delivery. It just sucked me in. And I mean, I was, I was just completely entranced by it. It was just an incredible work of music to me. And so I got home and that night I was really emotional. 7 (22m 48s): This was, I was going through through a break up at the time. It was my first breakup. And so I sat down, I was feeling really upset and I wrote snow globe, which that was the first song that I ever properly wrote. And, you know, at the time I felt like I was trapped within what I was feeling and I couldn't get out. And it felt hopeless, you know, as any angsty teen teen would. So I, I thought of this concept where I'm like, okay, I'm, I'm, it's almost like I'm a little, I'm a little human trapped in a snow globe and I'm being tossed around and I don't have any control and there's snow. 7 (23m 29s): And, you know, I'm, I'm just totally out of control. So then it went beyond the feelings of the breakup and it went into feelings of isolation. It went into feelings of not knowing where I'm going in life and feeling lost and confused. And I just sat down and for 15 minutes I just wrote and I just let it flow. And I finished a step back. It's like, oh wow. That's, that's really fucking cool. I've created this story. I've created this, this emotion and suddenly poetry wasn't so boring anymore. Suddenly it had, it had life. It was telling stories that had emotions. 7 (24m 9s): And that opened up this whole, whole new worlds within the art that I had never quite seen before. And it brought something that I often felt a lot of lyrical singer songwriter songs were missing and that's that extra layer of emotion and that extra layer of vulnerability. I feel like so many songs almost distract from their real meaning from the depth of the lyrics with pretty noises. I feel like a lot of times when something is sun, unless it's done right. Some of the meaning can be lost. 5 (24m 49s): I can see what you're saying there. Especially it's like a hook, like a great hook. And then you're like, whoa, like, I don't know. I I've used saves today as an example before, but like, I love that band, but like, they're, his lyrics are dark 7 (25m 3s): And 5 (25m 3s): He's, he's got a very poppy voice and he sings it in a way where you're like, oh, this is like a sing along. And you're like, 7 (25m 10s): Oh 5 (25m 10s): My God, he's talking about singing. You know, like, you know, at your funeral at, or whatever it is or talking about, you know, cutting his scan. Like it just like gets like dark, but the way he's presenting it as, and so it's just like poppy, like, yeah, like we're not even hitting the way. I'm sure he was when he was writing it out 7 (25m 30s): And don't get me wrong there. That is a beautiful thing. And I think it's a whole, it's a whole different category of creative and it's a whole different genre of emotional music, you know, I'm, I'm not trying to put myself on a high horse here. I don't know. 5 (25m 42s): I know you're not, but I'm just saying, yeah, I can see exactly where you're coming from. 7 (25m 46s): Yeah, for sure. For sure. You know, I, I don't think I'm some Messiah creating beautiful emotional music, but what I found within myself was, as I read through these foams, or I listened to pieces by hobo Johnson, just this, this emotional delivery that was, 0 (26m 2s): If you're into designer furniture and you want the sofa that broke the internet, you don't have to go broke to get it because designer looks, furniture has all the same styles and trends and all the quality, but without the designer prices check them out. Designer looks at American signature furniture or design. It looks.com. 7 (26m 19s): It was so raw. I mean, you couldn't get away from what, you know, he was saying a hobo Johnson, for example, where it was just piano and just vocals. I mean, it slapped you in the face with what it meant. And I thought that was such a beautiful thing. And I was like, that's, that's what I want to do. And so when I got around to the actual process of recording, I, I kept that close to heart and you can hear that you threw out my whole first album, 90% of the songs are just piano and vocals. And that's how we recorded them. I mean, we wouldn't even record the piano vocal separately. It would be me at the piano with the mic in front of me. 7 (26m 58s): And some of them were first second take. I would be like, there it is. All right. That communicated what I needed. So yeah, I just, I just had fallen in love entirely with the, the emotional harshness, almost of the, the style of poetry. 5 (27m 20s): It's amazing. And with, with that, like, I mean, being vulnerable, like people resonate with that, obviously. So it all, did it start with the Tik TOK success? Like it was that when people were really like attracted to, oh, what's this guy got going on, is that what drew people in? 7 (27m 35s): Yeah. I, I mean, I didn't think there was any kind of audience that, that was one of the main reasons I, I never recorded just cause I was kinda like, I don't think anyone would cares too much. Yeah. You know, it was 5 (27m 47s): Weird about that. 7 (27m 48s): And we were very, I was, I was kind of almost embarrassed about the music cause it was so it was different and it was vulnerable. And at the time, you know, I'm a 17 year old kid and I'm, I'm thinking about social norms, you know, all sorts of stupid bullshit like that. But you know, at the time 5 (28m 4s): I was still in high school then 7 (28m 5s): Yeah. 5 (28m 7s): Song hit real hard. Like you were still in high school. 7 (28m 10s): Wow. So 5 (28m 11s): Crazy. 7 (28m 13s): It was, it 5 (28m 13s): Wasn't the questions about this. 7 (28m 15s): It was a big deal at the time though. I was, I was, I didn't want anyone to hear these songs. Honestly. I was, it was because it was so vulnerable. I was, I was really scared, but I started posting on take stock just for fun as most people do. And then I posted a clip of me singing somebody else's songs. And I got, you know, like 10 times the amount of likes that a normal video would. And, 5 (28m 41s): And were you doing this on your personal thing that you're all your classmates and peers knew about? 7 (28m 47s): No. Nobody knew about it at the time I put it under, I put it under Juul boy, which he knows my last name with boy at the end of it. 5 (28m 55s): That's still your handle, I think on Instagram, 7 (28m 59s): But I didn't tell anyone because once again, I was just, I was kind of embarrassed that I was like, I'm just doing this. 5 (29m 2s): Sure. Yeah. That's what I was wondering if you're going to, if that was something, okay, sorry, go ahead. 7 (29m 7s): And then one day I recorded snowglobe and I had it, it sat in my drafts for a few days. I didn't post it cause I was like, man, I don't know if I want to like put this out there one night I was about to go to bed and I was like, fuck it. I'll just throw it up. Whatever, whatever, you know, woke up the next morning I had like 80,000 likes and the, the most, the most likes I'd ever gotten on a video before was like 2000 most. And so I was just like, oh my God, of like I'm being perceived. You know, there's people in the comments that are, are, they have things to say about my emotions. 7 (29m 51s): And I was, I was so overwhelmed. I went to school the next day and I kind of felt like I was floating. It was all I could think about. I was just like, this is crazy. So 5 (30m 2s): Gosh, how many 7 (30m 4s): Weeks? 5 (30m 5s): Real quick. So that's yeah. And you're probably not sharing this with anyone, right? Or are you like, yo, like I'm 80,000. It's just nothing. 7 (30m 12s): Didn't say anything. Didn't say you got 5 (30m 14s): To keep it in. Okay. 7 (30m 17s): Then yeah. A few weeks ago by and I'm like maybe, you know, I'll post another. Why not? And so I record, okay. And man, I did like 20 takes. Cause I just, you know, 5 (30m 33s): Get it right this time. Exactly. Exactly. 7 (30m 35s): At that point you realize you're being perceived and I'm like, wait, this might matter a little bit. And I'm so frustrated. I can't get it right. You know, I can't get it. Right. What I didn't know at the time is there is no right or wrong within creating things. But at the time I was really worried about getting the right. So man, I must've recorded that two dozen times, at least. And after you know, fucking two hours of trying to get the right take, I give up and then lats, it's another last minute decision. I'm like, whatever, I'll just post this last draft. I'll just throw it up there, throw it up there, go to sleep. Same thing next morning, I wake up except this time it's almost a million likes overnight. 7 (31m 17s): I mean 5 (31m 18s): This, this, 7 (31m 19s): This thing. I still have never had a video replicate that level of success, not even close. I mean, it literally is. No it's insane how much that video took off. And I'm looking at 8,000, 10,000, 12,000 comments of people having something to say about this super close, intimate, emotional thing that I've written. And that was one of the craziest feelings. I mean, I, I just, the, the dopamine rush and 5 (31m 50s): Dude, I can't even imagine 7 (31m 52s): Mixed with the terror mixed with, I mean, just all these different feelings. I mean, I was just so overwhelmed. Only person I told about was my parents. That was the only person. 5 (32m 4s): So you're like, oh my gosh, this, I mean, this has a million legs. Like, do you even like, at that point, you're like, oh my gosh, I've got to move this. How do you capitalize on? I mean, that's a bad word to use, but I mean like how do you now go, okay, like I have this audience, people are liking what I'm doing. Do you, are you responding to all these comments? Are you like, are your followers just going crazy? Cause now you have a million hits on this. 7 (32m 29s): I probably jumped over 70,000 followers in one night. I mean, it was, it was insane. Like I genuinely okay. I've I have, I've had friends who want to start making music. That'll come to me in the last for advice. And I will say, dude, I couldn't tell you. I got lucky. That's that's, that's all it is. You know? I, I, 5 (32m 52s): Well, I'm going to ask you that. I hope hopefully you'll have something to say, but yeah, that's, that's insane. That's so crazy. Wow. And then at this point you say, Hey, Hey to your friends, like, you know, here's my, my stuff. Like when do you, when do you, are you able to, or when do you feel comfortable, like talking about this project you have, 7 (33m 14s): It's funny. The way it first started is I had a friend of mine sent a screenshot of bouquet on his for you page. And he said, Hey man, is this, this is you. Right? And I was like, no. And I was like, yeah, that's me. And then another friend texted me the next day. And then, you know, they all start talking and it just spreads suddenly everyone knows. And you know, going to hang out with friend groups and it's all they're talking about. And I'm like, oh my God, this is, 5 (33m 47s): Was that cool or weird? Or like, like being, you're probably, you know, obviously the talk of the school at that point, like, oh my gosh, the kids is viral song. 7 (33m 57s): I've never been one to, to love being the center of attention. To be honest, I didn't love it. I did not love it. Especially bad people got fake quick. I found out, you know, people, people are like, Hey, can I get, can I get your phone number? We can talk. We can be friends. And then I'd find out that they're going and like bragging to other people that me and them are friends now. And it's on honest thing. And you know, when people post pictures with me, cause like, cause I have a personal Instagram too. Right. It's private. And I only let my friends on, but you know, they would, it was little things like they would tag the big Instagram instead of the small one out of nowhere. I'm like, okay, I see, you know, I see how it is. 7 (34m 38s): Right. 5 (34m 39s): So story with me, 7 (34m 41s): My circle, my circle very quickly went from this and me being super extroverted and having a million friends to five friends that I trusted and you know, and that was it. It was just, you know, my close group. 5 (34m 55s): Oh my gosh. Yeah. I was thinking that like, cause it's, so it's crazy for me to even think about like how it is growing up with social media in school and like how ever, you know, it's, it's beyond me. Cause that wasn't something I grew up with at all. And when I was in high school, but I would just, just showing up at school if somebody went like viral, like, cause that's what everybody wants. Right. Which is weird. Cause when I was growing up, it was like, if a band sold out, you weren't allowed to like them anymore. Now it's like, people want to have that hair, but I can imagine kids being like wanting you to, you know, share something of theirs or tag them in something just so they can build off of what you have already created. 7 (35m 35s): Yeah. You know, you can't blame him, but at the time it kinda 5 (35m 40s): Wild. 7 (35m 41s): Yeah. It definitely, it sucked a little bit. I mean it's w what a first world problem, it'd be like, oh my God, suddenly 5 (35m 48s): I have all these people following me and loving my music. Like what a drag. 7 (35m 53s): Yeah. But it was, it definitely, it made me realize that, you know, things are a lot simpler. If you just have a few friends that don't care, you know, th the, the, the people who stuck around are the ones who didn't change. They kept making fun of me. They kept, you know, they quite frankly didn't care. And that's exactly what, what, 5 (36m 14s): Or we're happy for it. Not to the sense of like, but now I like expect, can you help me type thing? 7 (36m 20s): Exactly. That's exactly. 5 (36m 21s): Oh, I'm so happy that you did like, that's so cool. 7 (36m 24s): Yeah. So happy they did that. And then we're not going to really talk about it again. And I'm like, right. 5 (36m 30s): That's wild, man. Well, so then how do you bring these people over to your Spotify? Because you probably didn't have a Spotify account if you just put it up, like, you're like, okay, I'm going to see what happens if I throw this on Tik TOK. 7 (36m 41s): Yeah. Let's see. The bouquet went viral in, I want to say really early November or really late October of 2019. And then I released my first album in mid December of 2019. So really it came down to man. I, once again, I didn't know what I was doing at all. I had very little, I mean, I'd literally gotten social media for the first time. Like a couple of years before. I never really like used it that much. Like I wasn't like seriously on social media all the time. So, I mean, I didn't know what the fuck I was doing. I had no idea. 7 (37m 21s): I didn't know how to handle it. I didn't know how to keep fans. I knew nothing at all. So it was just little things where I would make a video and be like, Hey guys, I'm working on this album, stick around, please type in. 5 (37m 35s): Oh, okay. So you just go on there and kind of just say, Hey, like yeah, I'm working on stuff. 7 (37m 40s): Yeah. Or I'd make a video and out of another poem and I put in the caption, okay, this is going to be on the album type thing. And then it was just a matter, we pushed out the album as quick as we could. I mean, that first one, we literally made it in less than a month. Like the, the time between, when we started the album and when we released it was less than a month. Wow. I mean, the recording process itself, we probably did everything in about a week's worth of time. Most, 5 (38m 5s): I guess, you'd want to, because if you people's interest goes like that. Right. And then they're like, oh yeah, yeah, that was a cool, like a month ago. Like I don't care. 7 (38m 14s): Yeah, exactly. And so I was working at a, at a, at a burger place at the time. This was a really shitty job. Horrible managers, coworkers kind of sucks. I mean, it was, it was awful. And I was talking with one of the nice coworkers in the back. I don't remember. And I was talking about, ah, yeah. You know, releasing an album next week, blah, blah, blah. And they're like, oh, awesome. They're like, you're gonna, you're gonna like blow up. I was like, no, I was like, I was like some people on tape talk like that, but I was like 5 (38m 44s): More than I already have no size. 7 (38m 47s): I was like, I was like, realistically, I was like, you know, it's been a month. The hype has died down. My videos are doing worse. Again, you know, I'm back down to maybe a thousand likes video. You know, I was like, eh, you know, I'm going to be one of those artists where it says lent less than a thousand monthly listeners underneath their name. And each of their songs have to be a couple thousand streams. And I was like, that's what I'm going to be. But I'm like, that's, that's enough for me. I just, I want some people to hear me, you know, I was like, at the end of the day, I just want to get this off of my chest. I want to process these things that I'm talking about. I want to get it out there. So I had no expectations of transferring between platforms, such as that. 7 (39m 28s): Then I released it and essentially naturally got a million streams on the album, on Spotify, in that's crazy in the first month. And so, I mean, once again, it was just, people wanted to hear it and people needed to hear it. And one thing led to another and they listened. 5 (39m 51s): Cool. 7 (39m 51s): I still, I still can't. I I'm still in disbelief. I mean, it still feels like the first day that everything happens and I'm just kinda like what, like I still to this day, I still feel that it's unreal. 5 (40m 2s): So once that happens and now you've proven not only the song worked on Tech-Talk, but now it's working on Spotify at this point, our rate, our record labels and management and people like that, kind of coming out of the woodworks being like, oh, Hey, let's just of go going on. 7 (40m 18s): Not really. No, it's, it's interesting. I, I I'd always heard that and I was expecting it. I didn't really get that. I still couldn't tell you why I'm no music industry guru. I don't, I don't, I don't know much about the management or label. I mean, I've had a few labels approach with, eh, deals that I just wasn't a fan of. I've had a couple of managers approach where I'm just kind of shrug it off. Cause I'm like, I can do most of this stuff myself. Yeah. You know, I, I don't know. I feel like a lot of labels might hear my stuff and kinda just be like, this is weird. 7 (40m 58s): You know, we can't mainstream this, you know, let's, let's move on. 5 (41m 3s): I see. 7 (41m 4s): And honestly, I don't know, unless the label deal was really good. I, I wouldn't take it independent is totally the way to go. Yeah. 5 (41m 12s): I was going to stay. You're working. You're doing just fine. Mean, it's just, yeah. That's so cool though. Wow. All right. Well then talk to me about this new song that you just put out. 7 (41m 24s): It's called. Why am I not better? It, it touches on a concept that I feel anyone who struggled with mental illness at any point can heavily relate to it essentially is. It's very straightforward listening to the title. It is asking the question, why am I not better yet? And I wrote it in a very dark place a few months ago, where I was looking back on my mental health journey over the last two years, as I've discovered things about myself and realized, oh man, like I'm not, I'm not okay. Type thing. I was looking back at it all in a kind of dark moment. And I was thinking to myself, dude, why, why am I not okay yet? 7 (42m 6s): Why is my mental health not better? I've been going to therapy for two years. I mean, I've been making music to process this stuff. I've been doing everything I can. I've been, you know, taking cold showers, getting plenty of sleep meditating, going on, walks, doing everything I can to try to improve my mental health and nothing is working. I'm still in the same spot that I was two years ago. So frustrated and throughout this whole evening, just the, the, the question, why am I not better? Just kept ringing around my head until finally I was like, well, I'll, I'll, I'll do what I know how to do. So I sat down and I typed out my phone. 7 (42m 46s): I typed out, why am I not better? I just kind of sat there. And I looked at it for a little bit and then it just started to flow as it does. That's that's how I write whenever I, whenever I'm intensely feeling, I don't think I've ever taken more than 20 minutes to write a song. It's all in the moment. If I'm feeling something, I just get this overwhelming urge to just sit down and just write. And I can't explain it. It just is how I process. And so everything's from the heart that I write. And so I sat down and I mean, it just came and I'm like, God, it's been so many years. And then it just, just kept going. 7 (43m 27s): And so, yeah, I really, I tried in the production stage to really capture the haunting feeling of realizing that things aren't improving. It's a very hopeless feeling. It sucks. And so I really tried to make the song encapsulate that and really tried to make it communicate that fact. And I th I think, I think it does it pretty well. I think it's a stab in the heart. I think it's a, it's a, it's a harsh awakening. Yeah. It's, it's, it's a powerful piece. Sure. Yeah. 5 (44m 4s): And was this something else that you had written or recorded, I should say with your dad at your house? 7 (44m 9s): Yeah. Yeah. Wow. Literally right behind that wall is whereas, and yeah, he, he was actually the one that thought of the idea of adding in the vocal effect in the cell, really the, and I'm forgetting how to sleep and, you know, there's this kind of warped darken thing. And the concept is essentially almost this, it's almost like a Jekyll Hyde thing where during the dark, the really dark lines where I'm talking about really dark things, you know, like eating disorders or self harm or anything like that, it's almost like this other side of me comes out and that's kind of the part that I'm questioning. 7 (44m 53s): And I'm wondering, why am I not better from this? And so it kind of creates that cool dynamic that back and forth. 5 (45m 1s): No, it's, it's such a cool song. All your songs are rad. It's just such a different way. Like I just can't like put, like you said, there's, it's just, it's presented in such a cool way that I haven't heard anything really many artists do it's yeah. I love it. And I mean, so from now, like you said, that you're just doing this folder. Are you able to do this? Full-time now with the success of the songs 7 (45m 25s): I am. I am. I'm super, super lucky to be able to do that. I mean, I just, I, I really can't express to you at the end of the day. Like, it's just, it's, it's so incredible. One of the questions I get sometimes is prepare, like what, what did it, what does it feel like? You know, w what did it feel like to, to, to go viral? And what does it feel like to be able to make songs like this? And I'm like, dude, I, I just can't describe it is it's incredible. I I'm so lucky that everything just fell into place. You know, I, I count my blessings every day. Th th that I am able to do this full time. I mean, the fact that, you know, I get, I get to process and express my emotions as a job and help other people do the same is just, it's such a gift that has been given to me. 7 (46m 21s): That's, that's the, you know, I'm not going to sit here and go, yeah, I, I earned this, you know, I deserve this. I, I, I put in, you know, I, I put in the work, I got the reward. It was just something where, you know, people related to it. And that is the only reason that I'm, you know, here able to talk to you that I'm able to make music is because people connected with me and they listened and they felt understood. And it's just, it's a beautiful thing that I'm, that I'm able to do this. 5 (46m 57s): Yeah, definitely. Well, being a senior in high school, and this all happened, like, what was the plan is say, you wouldn't have ever got the courage to put that song up on Tik TOK, and this didn't happen the way it did. What were you, what was the plan or were you even thinking of pursuing music? 7 (47m 14s): Let's see what I can tell you. I was not thinking of pursuing music. I wasn't at all. Just cause it was both something I was embarrassed of. And it was, you know, something that I didn't think with what I was writing, people would ever want to hear. I didn't have a plan. I mean, I had, I was in such a low place. I didn't even realize how low I was at the time I thought I was doing just fine. But once I started allowing myself to feel and process, I mean, I realized I was in a horrible mental state. Sure. I mean, I had very little vision for my future. I knew I wanted to, I wanted to do motivational speaking. That's the only thing I had going for me. 7 (47m 56s): And I knew I wanted to do something around emotions. Cause that was still something I was passionate about. I didn't realize how passionate I was about it, but I was like, yeah, I want to do like mental health awareness. 5 (48m 7s): Well, you're kind of doing, I mean, you're obviously doing that now, so totally different way. That's 7 (48m 13s): But I mean, at the time it was just, I was just going day to day working at the burger shop, going to school, just trying to get by really? I wasn't thinking too. Long-term I was kind of just surviving honestly at the time 5 (48m 25s): For sure. Well, congratulations, man, what you're doing and that's such a cool story. I have one more quick question. I know you said you don't know how to give advice, but I would love to hear if, what piece you could, you know, hand to somebody, an aspiring artist, what advice you'd give 7 (48m 41s): To that on? Okay. To two pieces of advice, the first one is going to seem really simple. The first one is to just start, just, just start, whatever it is. If there's a project, if you're an artist who hasn't even began to record yet, if you just have a vision, don't fall into the trap of once I get this, I'll be able to do this. Don't that's a trap and it will leave. You stuck for years at a time, just start. That's all it is. Yeah. 90% of success comes from starting. 7 (49m 26s): That's the starting and sticking with it. There are a million times I could have quit. There were a million reasons for me to not even start, but I kind of just threw caution to the wind and decided this is something that I want to do is something I'm passionate about. Fuck it. I'm just going to do it. That the end of the day is the number one thing for any creative. No, there is not going to be a special moment. There is not going to be a change in the direction of the wind. You just got to do it. And the second thing, if you are passionate about something, don't let anyone take it away from you. Don't let anyone stop you. 7 (50m 6s): I've had my very fair share of hate many, many, many comments and DMS of people telling me that I didn't make a real music that you know, since I wasn't singing, I sounded horrible. This is, you're just trying to appeal to the female gender by being in tune with your emotions. I mean, any, anything you can think of I've had thrown at me. I've had, I've had real life friends talk behind my back about how they think it's embarrassing, how they think my music sucks, et cetera, et cetera. All of those I could have taken to heart and I could have thrown the music in the garbage and moved on to something that other people approved of more. 7 (50m 53s): But if I did that, I wouldn't have had, I mean, countless incredible opportunities. I wouldn't have met incredible people. You know, I, I wouldn't be where I am today. That's for sure. And so if there's something you're passionate about something you love to don't listen to anybody. That's I mean, that, that is the, the, the, the other biggest thing don't listen to anybody. Don't don't don't try not to take advice. You know, don't, don't take my advice. Do your own thing genuinely. Just like, like don't listen to anybody. Just do, do your thing. Start to go run with it. 7 (51m 34s): That's that's all you can do. 1 (51m 59s): Mary redeemed, a $50,000 cash prize playing Chumba casino. One line, 2 (52m 4s): I was only playing for fun. So winning was a dream come true. 1 (52m 8s): The casino was America's favorite free online social casino. You too could have a chance to win life changing cash prices. Absolutely. Anybody could be like Mary B like Mary log on to Chumba casino.com and play for free. Now, no purchase necessary void where prohibited by law 18 plus terms and conditions apply. 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Ethan Jewell Profile Photo

Ethan Jewell

Poet/Artist

Ethan Jewell’s raw and emotional poetry is guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings. At only 19 years old, Ethan is pioneering his way through a new genre, which he likes to call “Musical Poetry”. With elegant, carefully chosen words that blend perfectly with the delicate sound of his piano, Ethan aims to ignite intense emotion in anyone who dares to listen.

Ethan is still new to all of this- releasing his first songs only months after starting his Tiktok account in late 2019, he found inspiration to create in the people who took the time to listen and connect. Hardly two months after he began posting on the platform, his song “Bouquet” went viral- with the original video boasting 5 million+ views and the track at 4 million streams on Spotify and counting.
A passionate advocate for mental health awareness, Ethan has worked to create a space for others to share and understand their emotions- even when it’s difficult to do so.
“I simply want people to understand that they must feel their feelings, no matter how uncomfortable that may be”