"It’s nice to know that other people can relate to those experiences.” - Jake White
“Letting go is the hardest thing to do when you’re so broken inside” sings Jake White during the opening verse to his first single “Unwanted.” Based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, White is a 22-year-old student of the University of Michigan and has begun his career as a Pop musician on the right note. In White’s first single, “Unwanted” producers Jeremy Ryan and Cooper Anderson help illustrate the feelings and emotions that White has about a break-up. Throughout the song, White conveys the feelings of rejection, pain, loss, and loneliness that he is experiencing. At the start of the track, the combination of the song’s light piano and White’s soft-spoken voice help the listener understand the events of what must have happened, and White’s vehemence about the breakup. However, by the end of the song White’s voice grows stronger, and the instrumentals blare in retaliation to those feelings of rejection. His voice absolutely envelops the listener and allows them to feel all the emotions that White has been experiencing because of this break-up.
In a recent interview with Jake White, he described what it was like to create this song – and also announced that a new single entitled “Self Destruction” will be available on December 24th. Available on all music streaming platforms, this new song has a lot of hype following it due to the overwhelming positive feedback his first single “Unwanted” received. Continue reading for the interview with White about the creation of his music, and be on the lookout for “Self Destruction” coming soon.
How old are you? Where are you based? What made you want to start creating music?
“I am 22 and I am in the Ann Arbor Michigan area. I got into choir and musical theatre when I was in high school, and then I ended up going to the University of Michigan to study voice. I came into the Voice Performance program and it was just not for me – singing the classical music and everything. Then I got into learning more about music business and music production, and experimenting how to write my own stuff, and how to produce. That was really fun and it’s a lot more interesting to me at least than classical music.”
You taught yourself how to produce music and how to put out all of your own stuff, that’s pretty impressive. How did you get that start?
“I took a class that was Basics of Producing and I have some stuff that I’ve worked on, on my own. But the songs that I’ve been releasing I am not producing the tracks for. But I do have other stuff that I’ve been working on that I hope and plan to release someday.”
Who produced your first single “Unwanted?”
“It was produced by Jeremy Ryan and Cooper Anderson and they work in New York. I’ve been fortunate enough to do some Zoom sessions with them; we send each other stuff and go back and forth all the time.”
How did you come to meet them?
“It’s actually a really funny story, my mom was on trip with my sister in Greece and they met Jeremy when he was on his honeymoon with his wife. They got along really well, Jeremy and my sister have very similar personalities so they clicked, and then they hung out for almost a week straight. They sang karaoke off of rooftop bars and that whole thing. He mentioned that he was a movie/music producer and that he works with artists and stuff. We gave it a second after my mom came back home, and gave him a minute to enjoy his honeymoon, but pretty soon we were like, ‘Let’s make an introduction!’ I’m studying music in school and I want to be doing this, but at the time I didn’t necessarily have good connections or resources to make it happen.”
How would you define your music to listeners?
“I would say pop but also, especially the first single [‘Unwanted’] a heart-break ballad bit. It really gets you in your feels.”
Let’s talk about “Unwanted” for a second, so how do you feel about the single now that it’s released?
“I really enjoy it and I have heard from a lot of people in both my extended family, and people I know that they really feel the raw, sad emotion bits of the song and they can relate to it. That’s been really interesting because I’ve never really published anything before, so to hear from people that I know that it resonates with them is really interesting. It feels nice because it’s of course based off some times where I was at my worst and feeling really low. It’s nice to know that other people can relate to those experiences.”
In the single you sang the lyrics, “Drying your tears while you fear of losing all of your pride.” I feel like there is a story there, could you explain what the single is about to those who may not have heard it yet?
“I went through a really tough breakup over the summer and I had a difficult time moving on and re-centering myself on my own life. There were times where I would wake up and would have had dreams of that guy, and I would have to realize where I am today and my actual reality – not get caught up in the past, and also giving respect to myself and not allowing this person to have so much control over my life. It was definitely a time and I spent a few months circling around the same thoughts over and over again, and doubting myself and my actions during the relationship – really just going through it over and over again.”
How did you pick the title of the song?
“It was actually going to be called ‘Game Over,’ and it still had a similar meaning, but we ended up changing it to ‘Unwanted’ because at the time it felt very right to change the word. All in all, that is the best way to sum up the general feeling of rejection, or how deeply you can hurt after something like that.”
Who took the photo of you that you used for the single’s artwork?
“That was in a photoshoot that I did a few years ago that I did with my high school friend Julio, who is a photographer. Over the years we have done a few really cool photoshoots where I really pop out and wear the leopard blazer. Every time we do a photoshoot, I try to pull out some of the craziest stuff that I own. He is a great photographer and I definitely want to continue working with him in the future. I’ll keep pulling out some cool clothes, I have some fun blazers and jackets that I’ve thrifted. I almost always thrift from the women’s section because men’s clothes are always so much more boring. If you ever want anything interesting in color or adventurous in patterns, you have to go to the women’s section because men’s stuff is so boring.”
I understand you’re working on your second single “Self Destruction” which should see a release date before the year is up. How would you describe the song to fans of yours?
“It’s a little more upbeat than the last song, and the title comes from the next step or phase in moving on from a breakup. It’s about taking the control back, respecting yourself more, noticing traits in people and yourself that are unhealthy, and being more aware of that in the future. It’s also about noticing that this person is not valuing me like they should, and that in of itself is a self destructive tendency. I’m an awesome person and if they can’t see that then that’s on them. The release date for that single is December 24th, and you can find it on all music platforms.”
What would you like listeners to know more about you?
“I guess that I'm cool, I love videogames and nature. I love national parks, hiking and exploring. I also have a unique hobby that other people might not have, and that’s spelunking, or cave exploring. I think that’s something that sets me apart because I don’t know many cave dwellers. I have not repelled in a cave necessarily but I have done some extensive crawling and I definitely wear a helmet and headlamp. I’m a little bit of a thrill seeker.”
What are your goals for 2022?
“I would like to continue to work and release music. Continue to love myself, and others, and treat myself well. To be healthy emotionally, and physically. And take a break from dating, I’m also planning on moving to Nashville next year, and at this point I just need to start life again. Right now, I feel like I’m in limbo at the moment; so that’s a big thing to look forward to.”