Before Nitrogen – Interview
Interview with Pete Devine of Pete’s Rock News and Views (http://petesrocknewsandviews.com)
PD: What type of artist are you?
BN: Imagine if James Taylor was produced by Owl City.
PD: Tell us the brief history of yourself.
BN: Before Nitrogen started in 2017 with our lead singer/songwriter Sean. Jack (guitar/co-lead singer) came on board in 2018, and Joe (DJ/machine master/kazoo/bubbles) joined formally in 2019 creating the trio you see today!
PD: Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
BN: The band started during a time of real uncertainty – both internal and external. A lot of our songs are inspired by moments of uncertainty and unease, but we’re always seeking the light at the end of the tunnel. Our motto as a band is “Hope is Not Lost,” and we hope that our music can both acknowledge hard times but also provide a path out of them.
PD: What are your dreams and goals?
BN: We hope our music can give you some hope in the future and the possibility of things to come. On a smaller scale, we want to continue playing around our hometown of Milwaukee once live music starts up again and see how far our songs can spread!
PD: Who writes your songs, what are they about?
BN: Sean is our primary songwriter, but we always try to stay true to the “Hope is Not Lost” motto in everything we release. That doesn’t mean that everything we put out is sunshine and ice cream, but seeking the light in some way or another is key for us.
PD: How do you promote your band and shows?
BN: All Before Nitrogen shows feature free homemade cookies!
PD: What do you think about downloading music online?
BN: We went into this project with no delusions of “striking it rich” or “making it big,” we just wanted to share a story that we thought would resonate with people. To that end, we really don’t care how you find our music so long that it gets to you to somehow.
PD: What song do you wish you’d written and why?
BN: twenty one pilots’ new single “Level of Concern” is utterly perfect. The “Hope is Not Lost” concept is on full display in that song – it acknowledges the stress and uncertainty of the moment but finds comfort in the fact that as long as he and his loved ones are together, things will be ok. It’s a small victory, but a victory nonetheless, and that’s what can make all the difference.
PD: What are some of your pet peeves?
BN: Obviously we try to focus on the positive, but speaking personally one of my pet peeves at the moment is artists who brag about being self-taught or self-produced or doing everything themselves, etc. – I get that there’s a certain “rugged individualism” to those ideas, but I also think that’s overrated. The things that we’ve accomplished as a band that we’re most proud of are things we did in partnership with other bands and artists. When you come from a music scene as small as ours, everyone’s in it together. Whenever we get to work with someone we admire in the scene, or when we get to help our friends find a new audience, it’s a great feeling.
PD: What is your proudest moment in music?
BN: We’ve been very fortunate to set up some really cool shows in our hometown of Milwaukee. Last September we put together a “Semi-Acoustic Showcase” with some friends of ours in, and we all had a great time – we’re hoping to make that a regular event. This past February we set up a fundraiser concert for local charity Emma Loves Dogs (https://www.emmalovesdogs.org), and raised $2,000. We love making connections in Milwaukee and helping the community when we can!
Speaking of which, we had the opportunity to write a song in support of Imagine MKE, who are currently raising money for a local artist support fund – if you have the means, we encourage you to donate! https://imaginemke.org/mke-artist-relief-fund/donate.php?fbclid=IwAR1CRc2nN9v2RStmfz13tT1-i3FBkv7qoOEnlpbzc_7r1iXXVTTLdx2Rl1k
PD: So what are you working on at the moment?
BN: We have a new single coming out May 1st – you can pre-save on Spotify here: https://distrokid.com/hyperfollow/beforenitrogen/found?fbclid=IwAR24A5PC9XchxRjdQpZtFo2yPXiTKw2wXGQwD9DK-zeeZlmyyaKR3o-zGVM. The song is called “Found,” and it’s a short/sweet uplifting pop song that we hope will provide some good vibes in this time of isolation.
PD: What music have you available online and where can we buy it from?
BN: You can find us on Spotify (https://open.spotify.com/artist/13K6dRqZyhx0FDNdMS3rIH?si=AYhanfQvTgqwTm_Cr9X4mQ), YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCIjGASiwYOrjodLmEKcS9kA), Apple Music (https://music.apple.com/us/artist/before-nitrogen/1425099986), and all other fine streaming services!
Before Nitrogen links:
Band/Artist location – Milwaukee Wisconsin
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Check our page for Before Nitrogen