Young artists: the challenges behind the music

Krista Kroiss, Beat Editor

For musicians, it’s easy enough to cover other people’s songs. Even if the song is challenging, the chord progression and the lyrics already exist.
Creating these chord progressions, however, is a very different story.
Junior Kyler Granados, frontman for his band Another, can testify to this.
“We’ve had to determine what our style is,” Granados said when speaking of the challenges his band, Another, has faced. “We’ve been trying to discover who we are as a band.”
Because almost every possible chord progression has been done, finding a unique style that reflects a musician’s identity is especially critical and challenging for today’s aspiring artists.
Although most musicians search for their style within the limits of a specific genre of music, Granados has a different perspective.
“I don’t really believe in genre,” Granados said. “I believe more in feeling.”
While Granados aims for a more “introspective” message in his own music, his band writes for a more upbeat feeling.
“Another goes for a feeling that brings joy and makes people happy,” Granados said. “We have this vision of people dancing in the crowd and getting into it.”
Although Granados writes with a target emotion, senior Ryan Kirschner, also known as “Genghis,” writes songs based on his own emotions.
“It depends on the mood I’m in,” Kirschner said. “It’s either singer/songwriter acoustic or it’s hip-hop/rap.”
For Kirschner, the challenge is not finding his style, but rather accepting how he sounds. Or more specifically, the sound of his voice.
“I didn’t like my own voice and I still don’t,” Kirschner said. “ I messed around with a lot of effects to make it sound more distorted so it wasn’t so clearly my voice, and I realized I don’t like that either and it’s better as just my own voice.”
As Kirschner has come to accept his voice, it has become part of his musical wstyle.
According to senior Logan Johnson, singer of the band Bear in the Band, expressing identity is why his band started writing original music.
“We always talked about writing original music because we’ve only ever performed covers,” Johnson said. “So we decided ‘let’s write some music and get our own stuff out there, and show people what we’re all about’.”
Expressing individuality and identity is the heart of music, and as Johnson noted, it is what makes the challenges worthwhile.

“The writing process and the recording process was really grueling,” Johnson said. “There were definitely some challenges but in the end it was rewarding for sure.”
With so much heart and soul going into the music, Granados, Kirshner, and Johnson all agree: even if it is just a hobby in the future, they will continue to write songs after graduation.
“Music has become a big part of who I am and a big part of my identity,” Kirshner said. “If I lost it I don’t know who I would be.”