Toronto-based R&B Artist Jesse Maxwell just released his vivid new single “nosedive”. This track is laced with many different musical textures that listeners will get lost in the music literally. Maxwell chatted with ai love music about his musical beginnings, which inspires him, and spoke about the behind-the-scenes o the single. Find out what was important to capture while making “nosedive” with co-producer Andrés Alzate. Also, listen to the single below while reading. Let me know what you think in the comments!
First of all, please tell us about yourself!
Thanks so much for having me on your platform! My name is Jesse Maxwell, I’m an indie alternative R&B artist/producer. From Toronto, born and raised.
How did you get into music? What has that journey looked like?
I’ve been playing and studying classical music from the age of 7, and the move to start creating music of my own happened very organically. The journey itself has been as you can imagine it to be – some days I love what I do and it’s fulfilling in every way, and other days it’s frustrating and I feel still, but that’s life. I try to not get caught up in external factors because at the end of the day, I make music from the soul to the soul and I try to remind myself of that importance.
I make lots of music and I seem to push it out quite quickly. I’ve been releasing music since the end of 2019 and I’m about to release my third project, a lot of evolution in a short amount of time. The majority of my career has been during covid so I really haven’t had much experience to witness the response from listeners and supporters, so I’m excited to have more of that soon.
What artists and genres inspire you?
So many different artists. I get inspired by anything with interesting production, sometimes experimental. I am inspired by vocal arrangements and I love interesting jazzy harmony. Certain artists I’m really into right now are Sevdaliza, Nai Palm, D’Angelo, Oliver Malcolm, Frank Ocean, Iyla, Moses Sumney, to name a few.
It is 2022! What is something you want to focus on or challenge yourself with this year?
Lately, I’ve been focusing more on producing songs for other artists. I love working with other artists because I get to adapt to different styles and work with different creatives, with different approaches and that helps me expand my own skillset. In terms of my own art and creation, I like to challenge myself to be as free as possible without judging myself. My creative style is quite personal, introspective, and at times vulnerable so I try to keep it real and be my absolutely authentic self.
Let’s talk about “nosedive”. What is it about?
“nosedive” is about whatever you want it to be. To me, the song is about a high and come down, the invincibility one feels on the way up, the fragility on the way down, and the cycle within that.
What inspired you to write it?
I never plan specifically to write about a certain topic, it just kinda happens. I started with the chorus and everything else just fell into place. I get inspired to write from different phases or moments in my life. I wanted the verses to feel a bit free-formed, inspired by D’Angelo and the way he approached vocal arrangements. Other than that, there wasn’t very specific inspiration, I always create with feel and vibe, rather than structure, and what I think the “trendy” thing to do is.
What was the music production process like? What was the most important aspect of the song you wanted to capture?
The song was produced by myself and my co-producer Andrés Alzate. He brought me the initial instrumental and we just tweaked and added and subtracted things from it. When I listen to the song, it puts me in somewhat of a trance which is something we wanted to accomplish in the instrumental – the waviness of it and the lusciousness, we wanted to paint the idea of spatial depth, playing with certain things very upfront and in your ear, and others in the distance that you feel but are too far to discern.
What textures or sounds were important to showcase in “nosedive”?
There’s a certain roundness to the song that was important for me. The wah guitar is like a soft bubble just floating and cruising you through the experience, and that acts as the backbone of the song, over the understated and forward-moving percussion. The vocal effect throughout the song was a texture that was important to me as well. The fact that the vocals are filtered felt like I was singing from somewhat of an altered persona, how one files differently when they’re high, almost like a different person.
What do you want listeners to listen for in your music?
The music we create is dense and ambient, and when people listen to the music I want people to hear the texture and the complexity in it, every little sound that’s happening and get lost in the music.
Any future plans?
Releasing an album later this year, which I’m also pressing vinyl for. Releasing some music videos including a music video for nosedive which is out on February 16. Hopefully playing more shows soon. I hope whoever is reading this will stay along for the ride.
Make sure to check out Jess Maxwell at the following