Jason Salazar represents the LGBTQ+ community as a queer singer-songwriter who grew up performing and creating in the Christian megachurch world.
After many years of discrimination and abuse, being told exactly who he should be, and not being allowed to believe in anything outside of what he was taught, he made the decision to leave that world behind and seek out his own identity and beliefs. Focused on living a life that has a positive impact on the people he shares his music and story with, Jason Salazar finally feels free.
Creating an anthem that resonates with not only his audience, but the depths of himself, Jason Salazar brings forth the recently released single, “Worst Nightmare.” Through major piano chords pulsating as he produces melodic vocals with a pure soul, we admire the lens offered to us as we peek into the mind and heart of Jason Salazar.
He indulges listeners in cognizant lyrics that reflect himself finally being able to be himself through liberation, but by doing so, he happens to be someone else’s nightmare because he is not who they want him to be. As we wrap our heads around a subject so profound and vulnerable, we fixate ourselves with the passion that pours from the honeyed timbres emanated on “Worst Nightmare.” Navigating us through lyrical motifs that effortlessly paint the larger picture for those out there struggling to find their identity, beautiful sculpted words such as, ‘I don’t need your permission, I stand for what I believe in,’ pull us deeper into the profound conveyance of this hard-hitting single.
Through reverberated croons that evoke grippingly raw emotion, Jason Salazar still ensures that his music has a mainstream feel with the top-tier production quality helping to shape “Worst Nightmare,” into being a certified hit in anyone’s eyes.
Hello Jason, and thank you for joining us at BuzzMusic. The message in “Worst Nightmare,” pairs beautifully with the instrumentation it lays upon. We love what you’ve done to this track, what was the exact moment or story behind the inspiration heard?
I was in a position where people were dictating how I lived, who I was, and what choices I made and even though I was doing those things, it still wasn’t enough for them. One night I had a breakdown in the middle of the night and my partner Lee was comforting me and said the words “they do not deserve your tears.” In the following hours, I sat at my piano and wrote out all the lyrics, and then the next day I started tracking the song on my computer.
When bringing this song to life, did you work with a team of any sorts to give “Worst Nightmare,” the sound it deserves? What was everyone’s role? Yes, I did! This project was really special to me so I wanted to figure out both big and small ways to include the people in my life. My better half Lee Salazar helped me a lot with producing Worst Nightmare and the song's arrangement. Lee also sang some of the vocals on this record (all of the really high harmonies in the choir and the higher octave melodies and ad-libs throughout the song)! I wanted the vocals to be prominent, almost like a duet because we have been on this journey together literally side by side and also because Lee is my muse. It was a priority for me to include my brother Josh Salazar. Josh helped me create all of the synth bass and low-end synth sounds in this record. I felt like his musical input and expertise gave this song an extra layer that blended so well with my vision for the final product. I was also able to work with my good friend, Draven Rodriguez who did all of the mixing and mastering for Worst Nightmare. His creative knowledge and skill allowed me to express what I envisioned for this song and we were able to transform the auditory vision in my head into something tangible. Lastly, my good friend Madlyn made the cover art for Worst Nightmare. The cover art has a lot of symbolism and some hidden pictures in it that are really special to me and symbolic to my loved ones. I sent Madlyn all the inspiration and all of the pictures and she put it together and made something really meaningful that also perfectly represents the vibe of Worst Nightmare.
From the moments you were creating this single, to the present moment of it finally being out to the public, how have you found yourself growing as an artist and individual? I really feel like I've found my own voice for the first time ever. I spent a lot of my past trying to follow instructions, blend in, and match what was already created. I didn't have any experience really tapping into something that represents me and my own heart. Being able to make all the creative decisions and identifying my own sound for this project was so empowering for me as an artist as well as an individual.
What words of advice do you have to those struggling to find their identity and perhaps in a situation that you got yourself out of?
If you feel like the situation you're in is not right for you or is not safe, it's okay to decide to walk away. You don't need permission from other people to prioritize your mental and emotional health! As far as struggling with identity, It takes some courage and bravery to embrace our inner selves; the version of you that you hide from others because you don’t think they’ll accept you. It's not easy to embrace that part of yourself, in fact, it's really scary and sometimes people don’t accept you and it sucks. But the freedom and peace that comes from allowing yourself to be who you truly are are worth so much more than pretending to be someone you’re not. I just hope that listening to Worst Nightmare can empower and inspire people to be stand up for what they believe in, be who they want to be, and not live their lives by someone else’s expectation of them.
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