While working under the project Slipped off Silk, Northville based singer/song writer Jonathan Martin released his second single today.
“Turquoise & Yellow” combines loud, rousing choruses with an introspective look at loss and inspiration. The song follows his debut single “Alice May” that was released earlier this year.
We spoke with Martin regarding the inspiration behind his project and what we can expect in the near future.
Slipped off Silk is one of the most unique and creative project names I can recall hearing in recent music history. What inspired this pseudonym?
Thank you! I’m always a fan of alliteration! Before I had even recorded any music, or decided to start putting my music out, I was talking with some friends at work, and one of them mentioned that her friend keeps a list of phrases that would make good band names (kind of like Andy Dwyer did in Parks & Rec). She shared a few of them and Slipped off Silk jumped out to me so I put it in the notes in my phone and forgot about it. Then, a few months later, when it came time to pick a name, it popped back into my head and seemed like the obvious choice!
Can you discuss the origin behind Slipped off Silk? Was it an organic process making this project or were there any challenges to finding the right sound?
Yeah it was definitely an organic process. I’ve been writing songs, mostly beginning on the piano, for a while now; so, I didn’t sit down and try to adhere to any particular genre or sound or anything like that. I just wrote songs that I enjoyed; some of them happen to be guitar driven, some are piano driven, some are a little edgier, some a little bit on the pop side. It just sort of depends on how I’m feeling in the moment, but despite the stylistic differences that may exist between the songs I’ve written, I think there’s room for all of them under the Slipped off Silk umbrella. I sing on all the tracks, and wrote and arranged them so they’ll all, at least, have that in common!
Your Instagram describes this project as “alternative rock/ambient pop.” What are some of the musical influences behind Slipped off Silk’s sound?
I grew up listening to a lot of 90s rock, so I think there is definitely inspiration taken from that era, especially Oasis, but also the signature grunge sound of the decade. More recent influences include Oscar Scheller, who has sort of a melancholic, indie pop feel to his music, and even Lil Peep, with some of the more edgy yet, melodic hooks that you hear throughout his tracks.
For me, your new single “Turquoise and Yellow” is the perfect late-night drive listen. How did this single come about?
Love to hear that! “Turquoise & Yellow” lyrically encompasses the last 8-9 months for me. The chord progression was written back in January and when it came time to write the lyrics I found myself reflecting on a lot of the growth I’ve seen in myself recently, but also the setbacks and difficult moments I’ve been through. Turquoise & Yellow were the colors of my grandparent’s wedding back in 1956, and after losing my grandma in December, I wanted to pay homage to her and my grandpa, who passed back in 2018, and basically thank them for all that they’ve done for me. In a strange way, I found that coping with loss can actually be inspirational to a degree. I think it sort of lead me to shaking off my apprehension and taking the next step in releasing music; so, this song was really born out of that experience.
When first hearing your debut single “Alice May,” I definitely did not know what to expect. Yet, upon first listen, I was taken aback by how it sounds like your classic ambient rock track – with a twist. Why select this song as your first release?
I see “Alice May” as more or less of a middle ground in terms of the music I have created thus far as an artist. As I sort of alluded to earlier, some of my songs are a little bit on the poppy side, some are more alternative rock, but Alice May contains elements of both of those sounds, so it seemed like a good introduction to show people what I’m about!
In your opinion, how has your music evolved since your first single?
I think one of the biggest things for me has been getting more comfortable with the recording process and just understanding what’s possible. When you start getting deep into your own tracks and listening to your songs over and over and over you hear things a little differently. Understanding the subtle things about my voice and instruments has been really important and eye-opening in terms of writing and creating music that works for the tools that I have.
Also, just experimenting with different sounds and melodies while recording has opened up a whole new world of possibility for me. And I’m really excited about the opportunities and songs that I have coming!
With every project comes a certain inspiration – or message – that aims to be shared. What are you trying to convey to listeners?
Candidly, I have always have found it very difficult to stray out of my comfort zone, which has lead me to staying within myself and avoiding risks for the better part of my life. This project for me is a way to put myself out there, and show people a side of me that maybe they’ve never seen before. I’ve always been passionate about music and songwriting, and it’s time I opened up and shared it with people outside of my household and let people know who I am.
With all of us being quarantined this year, how have you remained active in making new music for Slipped off Silk?
Well, I think like everyone else, I’ve found myself with a lot more time on my hands than usual, which certainly lends itself to creating! A lot of my songs start with me just noodling on the piano or the acoustic guitar and then slowly developing more and more until it forms a cohesive song. From a creative/inspiration standpoint, there obviously has not been a ton going on in my life the past three months besides work and music, so it has definitely been important to look back and reflect on my past experiences for lyrical content!
What have you been listening to recently?
I’ve been listening to a lot of pretty diverse stuff. I’ve been really into piano driven music from bands like Keane and Coldplay, alternative rock from Highly Suspect, The Strokes (their new album was incredible, as expected), and Liam Gallagher, and then also artists like Lil Nas X and Iann Dior, who sort of blend hip-hop and alternative rock.
Can we expect more releases this year?
Definitely! The goal is to release several more singles throughout the rest of the year. I have a lot of material that I’ve been working on and a couple more songs that I’ve been sitting on and will hopefully be releasing soon. So, stay tuned! And thank you so much to you, Ryan, and the entire Resurget Magazine team for taking the time and effort to interview me! I can’t wait to continue creating and sharing music!