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  • Tracy Heck

Secondhand Serenade gearing up for new album release

Emo-pop rocker, Secondhand Serenade, recently released "One," the first single from their forthcoming album, Just Because You Sing Loud, which is expected to be out sometime early this year.

The solo project fronted by singer/guitarist, John Vesely, also recently wrapped up a Fall tour, which included a stop in Ann Arbor at the Blind Pig.

Just Because You Sing Loud will be his first full project since 2017 and the title stems from a confrontation with a neighbor at a temporary apartment he and his wife had moved into while their home was under construction.

The issues led to the neighbor leaving a note on his door that read, "Just because you sing loud doesn't mean it's good."

The harsh words served as an inspiration for the new album and Vesely ended up framing the note and hanging it in his studio as a reminder that any negative can be turned into a positive.

Recently, Rock Life got a chance to interview Vesely, who spoke about the tour, the album and being back in front of his fans.

Rock Life: How was the show at the Blind Pig and how did the tour go in general?

John Vesely: The show at the Blind Pig was incredible. I haven’t played a show in the area for a while so it was good to see people excited about it.

The tour was great. Obviously, it’s been a few years since I was last able to tour so being back out felt really good.

Rock Life: What does it mean to you to be back out playing in front of fans again?

JV: It’s like a part of me was missing and I finally got it back. I missed the feeling of being on stage. There’s really nothing like it.

Rock Life: I loved the story of how the album title came together. Do you often find that little incidents that irritate or hurt you wind up in your music and serve as a form of therapy?

JV: I always say that writing songs is therapy for me. I’m generally a very happy, upbeat guy so I use writing as an outlet for me to get all of my frustration and negativity out.

Rock Life: Can you talk a bit about the process of getting the new album together and what do you want people to know about it ahead of its release?

JV: Well, it’s been a while since I’ve worked on a project like this and I’m just really excited for people to hear the new music. I’m trying to take it back to my roots and make the music that made me want to become a artist in the first place. FYI: there will definitely be some sad songs.

Rock Life: How did the "One" track come together and why did you choose that one to be the first single release?

JV: “One” is a song that means a lot to me. Me and my wife Veronica wrote it together.

I started out writing the chorus and the phrase “I just wanna know you” came out. There was something really meaningful about it. From there, we just wrote about how it applied to different stages of our relationship.

I was just really excited about how it turned out and I felt it was a great song to start with. We also later found out that we were expecting so the song meant that much more.

Rock Life: How many singles do you plan on releasing and besides the album release, what's the plan for the new year?

JV: Well, I’m planning on dropping 10 songs this year. I will likely be planning for another tour after they are released. Hopefully, by then I’ll be able to do some international touring as well.

Rock Life: What keeps you pushing forward and releasing music, especially after such a tough couple of years for the industry?

JV: Just being on tour for the first time since before the pandemic reminded me how much the music means to everyone. Making music to me doesn’t feel like work.

Sometimes it’s challenging. Sometimes it just doesn’t come to you. It can even be intimidating at times to start on something new, but I wouldn’t trade doing it for the world and I’m grateful everyday I get to do it.

Rock Life: What's the best feedback you've ever gotten on your work?

JV: The best feedback you can ask for is a group of people singing along to your songs. It’s always very validating to hear people genuinely moved by what you do.

Rock Life: Finally, what would you like to say to the fans waiting for the new music?

I know it’s been a while, but thank you so much for standing by my music for all this time. I owe this record to you. I honestly wouldn’t still be here making music if it wasn’t for your support.

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