The veteran performer can’t stop and won’t stop rocking you out with his energizing new single.
Since 2003, Jay Luke has been carving his path in the music industry, relentlessly pouring his heart and soul into his performances and songwriting with diligence few can compare to. With a career that spans nearly two decades, Jay is a seasoned veteran of the stage, rocking out audiences and sharing stages with iconic names like Duff McKagan of Guns N' Roses, W.A.S.P., Metal Church, and Joey Belladonna of Anthrax, among others. Now looking towards a career as a solo artist, Luke is eager to make his mark and show off his electrifying skills.
Ever the go-getter, after facing frustrations with band lineups and the challenges of releasing official band albums, Jay Luke took matters into his own hands. His debut solo album, aptly and amusingly titled “It’s About Time,” was recorded between 2016 and 2017. “It’s About Time” signified both Luke’s ability not to take himself too seriously but also his determination to take control of his musical destiny. His last album, “Alone in the Crowd,” which arrived in March 2021, racked up over 130,000 streams, with listeners’ imaginations and hearts captured by Luke’s evocative songwriting and captivating performances.
Now, Jay Luke is gearing up to rock out his audiences again with his latest album, “Me And My Demons,” set to debut in the Fall of 2023. His latest release, the titular single “Me and My Demons,” is already making waves and heralds the continuation of greatness we’ve come to express from Luke. Over energetic, high-energy instrumentals led by a wicked electric guitar, Luke drops lyrics like “It’s only me. Me and my demons / An endless dark I dream of dreaming,” soaring over his instrumental performance like an eagle and bringing listeners to new heights. It’s an excellent old immersive rock experience that will get you pumped up, and we can’t wait to see what the album will bring.
Jay Luke's unwavering dedication, persistence, and commitment to authentic Rock N’ Roll continue to shine through in his music. When you’re ready, tap in and stream Jay Luke’s new single “Me and My Demons,” watch for the whole album in Fall 2023.
Welcome to Buzz Music, Jay Luke! We loved “Me and My Demons." What a titular track for your album! We had to ask, could you take us through the creative process for this track? What was the inspiration behind it?
First off, thank you for the kind words. The process creatively for this song began as I got inspired by an old Vincent Price horror movie where he looked on one shoulder and saw a devil, then turned to the other shoulder to find a devil, where you would expect him to see an angel. I liked that idea, as most humans always battle light and dark or good and evil within themselves. Most of the inspiration came from visual things like that, which stuck with me since I was a child, and everything fell into place from there. The artwork also was a tip of the hat to early 1900s turn of the century Magician performance posters.
I'm a graphic designer, so with the photography done by a good friend Eugene Lucas at EjL3 PHOTOGRAPHY, we got the right shots thanks to my friends Dorothy Dietrich and Dick Brooks at the Houdini Museum here in Scranton, PA, who kindly provided me with a strait jacket (which is a sentence few people get to say) we got the perfect image to correlate with the song. It deals with the madness many of us face in this modern life of deadlines, pressure, anxiety, exhaustion, insomnia, and surviving hardships.
As someone who’s been so established and respected in the industry for a while, what’s the biggest change you’ve noticed in rock n’ roll from the heyday of Guns N Roses to today?
Well, there are so many differences from that era to now it is tough only to name a few. When I was growing up, I had two goals, one was to make an album, and the other was to make a million dollars from it. One can now be done without even leaving your house, and the other is practically impossible. Making a million dollars from an album is as unrealistic now as saying, "Hey, let's go and have dinner on Mars." The days of radio play, music videos on television, charts, and people buying physical copies are sadly behind us. The main things these days are likes, views, streams, and downloads.
When I got a new album as a kid, I would hold the physical copy in my hand and stare at the album cover in a trance as if I was transported into that world while listening with a zen-like focus. It was also nice to read along the lyrics, see who was involved in each album, and check the liner notes on who my favorite artists thanked and mentioned. I would study all that as if I were to take an intense exam on it everything I listened to. I find it sad that all we are given as we listen to music is a small artwork thumbnail. It is all about adapting, though in the current state of music, you must find a way to make it all work. The one thing that never changes is that you must always get out there and play live and promote your music anywhere and everywhere you can. As much as I would love to complain that it's not as profitable as it used to be, there is no use when it won't change anything. You must wear your helmet, put your head down, and run through all the obstacles. One thing on the plus side of today is that when you put out new music, your reach is instantaneous all over the planet. It used to take a lot of pushing to get your music to other countries, and now it is released and available globally. The cool thing about that is you can keep track of where your music is played most, giving you an idea of where to market and promote things easier knowing.
For anyone trying to follow in your footsteps, what do you think is the most important quality for a musician to have?
Personally, I find one or two things to be most important. To never live in your past and rest on your laurels so much that you can't see ahead. They say not to stare in the rear-view mirror as you're not going that way. As proud as I am of some achievements, releases, videos, and shows, I believe deeply that the next release will improve. Someone once said that satisfaction is the death of desire, and I always took that statement to heart.
It is hard to balance being proud of what you've done and not dwelling upon it so much that you don't move forward. Instead of complaining about things not working, keep at it till they work out. And the biggest piece of advice is to listen to your heart because a critic's opinion means nothing in the big picture. Taking constructive criticism is one thing, but many people are so busy trashing the works of others they fail to see they have achieved nothing of substance while focusing on bringing others down. Most people crumble to that need to be accepted by a critic, and they don't see when you are criticized harshly in certain ways. It is almost always done by someone doing less than you, never more than you. Stay true to your heart; that is the best advice for anyone from any walk. I once heard an amazing piece of advice that went like this on dealing with how other's opinions of your heartfelt work should be taken: A young artist is exhibiting his work for the first time, and a well-known critic is in attendance.
The critic asks the young man: “Would you like to hear my opinion of your work?”
“Yes,” says the young man.
“It’s worthless,” the critic says.
“I know” the artist replies, “but let’s hear it anyway.”
Your next album, “Me and My Demons,” is slated for release in the fall. What was your favorite part of bringing the vision for this album to life, and are there any songs you’re especially excited to share with your fans?
Each release is very personal and will always be a snapshot in time that describes what I was doing, thinking, feeling, and going through. It is very autobiographical. This release has been therapeutic in so many ways. I tried a different approach with the songs, writing them as close to entering the studio as possible. In contrast, many of my other songs had been written sometime earlier and changed or edited several times, but these songs were as fresh as possible when they were recorded. I had considered the working title "Winging It" as the songs seemed to be flowing, but ultimately, I decided on "Me and My Demons" as it dealt closer to the material itself and things I was going through—a look inside a person's mental struggles and how they handle them. I think a HUGE amount of credit in the creation process goes to Michael "Duds" McDonald on lead guitar, who takes the songs as I present them and brings them to a whole new level with his fills, leads, and incredible solos. The initial idea of being a solo artist felt like a journey I would take alone, but on the last 3 albums, he has been a musical brother to me in making these songs come to life. I cannot say enough good about his style, his effortless cool in playing some of the most melodic and complex things, his personality, and how easy he has been to collaborate with. Joe Loftus and Jay Preston have been the producers of all my albums and deserve a massive amount of credit. Joe has been on double duty as the bassist, so it is understood that without these massive components in my life, these albums would sound a lot different. I am extremely grateful for their friendships and amazing work ethic. As far as any particular song I want to share with fans, it is like choosing a favorite child. I love them all. Each song fits into the story or concept as a brick that builds the whole thing.
What’s next for Jay Luke? Do you have anything you want to say to your fans?
After some more promotion of this single, the next thing is to prepare for the promotion of the full-length album. This year alone, I will have close to 50 performances, so it is an ongoing thing to keep myself out there to new audiences. Some other big news is that at the time we are discussing this, I hit a monumental landmark musically where my catalogue has now reached over 300,000 streams on Spotify. So, to the fans that have made such a thing possible, I may not make that million dollars I spoke of earlier, but things like that make me feel like the richest man in the world. Knowing the songs that I wrote have connected with that number of people near and far is a feeling that you cannot ever forget. It is indescribable and unbelievable to me. To the fans, I THANK YOU sincerely from the bottom of my heart! I hope you like this new single, and I hope you'll love the new album.