West Hollywood-based self-taught producer, multi-instrumentalist, and singer-songwriter, if u take me home. is the musical project of 28-year-old Jon Benward, constantly finding new ways to reflect himself and the ever-changing world through his music.
With inspirations like PARTYNEXTDOOR, The Weeknd, Majid Jordan, and Bryson Tiller, you'd think that if u take me home. 's sound is strictly R&B, but that's far from the truth. Growing up looking forward to blasting the radio on long car rides, a young Benward thought bands like Sum 41, Blink 182, and All American Rejects offered the most exciting music to hear.
Now debuting in the music industry with the sonic and visual pairing for "thoughts on god," we get to experience the sultry R&B atmosphere where if u take me home. excels in expressing themselves. The upbeat energy pairs with the introspective lyrical motifs that if u take me home. conveys.
Through a reverberated chamber of timbres, the echoes that lay within "thoughts on god" have us transported to a state of mind deep in thought. The brilliant imagery of the music video pairs with this song in a way that has us touring the streets and journey of the protagonist.
The city lights send us over the top as we know first hand that's when we get the majority of our thinking done. To bring the two together in a way that is so balanced brings a breathtaking amount of harmony to the picture. Coming back around to the fact that "thoughts on god" is solely crafted by the talents of if u take me home. blows our minds in the best way possible.
A true artist honing in on his craft, if this is the first glimpse we're seeing, then we can't wait for the rest of the music catalog to reach our speakers.
Welcome to BuzzMusic, if u take me home.! We love your debut single and music video for "thoughts on god." In your own words, could you please share what this song means to you as the artist?
Being the first song I've released under this new artist name, this song definitely has a lot of weight for me. It sonically encapsulates the musical journey of discovery that I inadvertently found myself on about three years ago. This song and this project are me growing up. Lyrically, it's about my struggle to come to terms with a lot of things from my past that I can never change and I think that is something a lot of people can relate to. Writing about such personal things was a real challenge and a choice that I found myself second-guessing daily. In the end, "Thoughts on god" turned out to be one of the most personal songs I've released to date and I'm excited to finally be able to share it with the world. Was there a particular moment or story in your life that brought you the inspiration you needed for this track?
Towards the end of 2019, I felt myself getting very experimental with my music (Think two-minute guitar solos. You get the picture). It was during this time that my fellow producer and long-time collaborator Anthony Annis and myself locked ourselves away to create anything that we could vibe out to. Although a lot of what came from this time was remarkably unusable, this song was one of those melodic ideas that really came together when I least expected it to. As the months rolled along into 2020, it became very apparent that the world was ending around me. I thought to myself "if the world never goes back to normal, what would I do?" and that thought pushed me to contemplate the roles that traditional social and religious normalities have had in my life. I was chasing my dream but I wasn't allowing my dream to grow and expand into the true vision that I knew it could evolve into. The reason behind this was fear of vulnerability impressed upon me by the world around that I had grown up into thus far. Throughout the turbulent year, I learned a lot about myself and how ready I was to take a leap of faith on a sound and musical style that was very outside of my traditional wheelhouse. "Thoughts on god" is the leap of faith. What was it like filming the music video for this song? Did the introspective vision come out exactly how you imagined it?
The process of filming this video was so much fun. We shot it on location in downtown Los Angeles during a somewhat warm late April night back in 2020. My long-time friend and kick-ass tattoo artist Ashley Grimm (@ashgrimmx) did an incredible job portraying the addiction-riddled heroine of the story. Visually, it came together incredibly well all due to my incredible director and videographer Samantha Baker (@samanthabakerfilm). My vision for the video overall was a simple one: to visualize an honest depiction of isolation and loneliness. The heroine in the video represents me lost in my own anxious mind and the mood swings that I often feel like I put myself through. The vision came together beautifully. What is the main message that you aim to convey to your audience?
The main message I want to convey to my audience with my art is to question what they have been told is the right path. I don't feel anyone can truly know what they want or what is right for them as an individual without critical analysis. The name of the project (if u take me home.) is a question without a definite answer. I feel like this moment in history that we're all in right now is a crucial turning point for us all. It's important to be brave and question the roads we choose to take as a result of our upbringing. How will you react when faced with a reality that may or may not match the one you were told that you need to chase? What's next for you?
Lots of exciting things. This year is going to be my busiest studio year to date and I'm beyond excited to share with you everything that I've been creating. Music, visuals, special surprises, etc. The future is looking very bright.