It’s often said that the artists who make it are some of the most persevering people out there, for it’s no small feat to rise above the noise, push past the “no’s” and work hard enough so that your music is heard by the right people! And if there’s any musician who lives up to that billing, it’s Brisbane’s Jason Maynard.
Like most musicians, Jason’s contributed his musicianship and songwriting talents to a litany of bands over the years (most notably The Martins and Griffin), the majority of whom saw success one way or another. From writing smart, catchy songs that turned into singles with considerable airplay and playing well-known music festivals on multiple continents, to being named a finalist in the International Songwriting Competition & Q Music Song Awards and opening for large acts including Pete Murray, Rock Price, The Android, Evermore and Dave Graney, Jason saw it all. However, unlike most musicians, he had the resilience to branch out on his own and show the world what his musical gifts were capable of accomplishing when standing on their own.
The result is Jason’s solo debut LP, Hereafter, due for formal release mid 2015 (its initial release was scheduled for late 2013/early 2014, but was delayed due to personal reasons). Recorded with ARIA nominated producer / Engineer Anthony Lycenko, the album is a collection of 14 songs featuring beautiful acoustics, poignant lyrics, and immaculate production. His sound, as heard on this album, translates perfectly to the live setting, where Jason has become known as a performer you just can’t predict – one minute playing a slower, reflective tune and the next playing a joyous anthem. To see him live is certainly to experience many of life’s emotional highs and lows in one sitting.
One can only hope this is just the beginning of Jason’s solo output; if Jason Maynard is heard by enough people, chances are he’ll be facing enormous demand for another record in the not so distant future. Until then, check his website for upcoming performances – it’s not uncommon to find him playing one of the Australian Songwriters Association’s events in Brisbane – and make sure to pick up a copy of Jason Maynard's Hereafter ASAP. You absolutely will not regret it.
Previously on Jason Maynard...
With his previous band, Griffin, he achieved high rotation commercial radio play with two independent singles, This World and Perfect Nightmare (the video clips to these two tracks airing on RAGE TV). Jason has performed at the NEMO Music Festival and Conference in Boston USA, and to the FUSE Festival in Adelaide in 2004, and has supported acts including Pete Murray, The Androids, Evermore and Dave Graney. Several of his songs have been short-listed by major US acts and Hollywood music score selectors, and made the finals of both the International Songwriting Competition, and the Q Music Song Awards.
After the amazing feedback from the pre-release of his debut album (co-produced with ARIA-nominated Producer/Engineer Anthony Lycenko ((Pete Murray, Xavier Rudd, Busby Marou)), Jason and J Music Australia are working towards a formal release, aimed for late 2014.
Maynard is a surprising performer worth catching live. His serious pop smarts were crafted at the altar of all things Finn, but are taken to an unexpected and interesting place with a little bit of country soul - reflective, sometimes gloomy, sometimes anthemic and joyous.
A little about me...
I remember running around the farm in the Lockyer Valley, at about ten years old, screaming at the top of my lungs, songs from acts that later greatly influenced my own music - Split Enz, Beatles, Duran Duran and The Moody Blues.
At around fourteen years old, Dad bought me a 2nd hand Cort Les Paul copy and a tiny Coronet amp from a kid at school. I got the bug and started teaching myself some great old instrumentals by the Shadows, etc. I took a few lessons from a local guy a couple of years older than me who played in some bands around town, and he showed me the chords, and scales etc. Unfortunately, I quickly found that I’d never be a “shredder”, but I took to rhythm and melody quite quickly.
Due to chasing dreams of becoming an Airforce pilot, my music took a back seat to study. Fantasies of becoming “Maverick” didn’t quite work out, but I still joined the Airforce as aircrew for a few years. It was during this time that I rediscovered music - as a study break. I’d bust out the Crowded House vinyl, plug a dodgy guitar into an even dodgier amp, and strum and sing away to Neil and co.
Several “career changes” later, I found myself out of work and out of home with Mum and Dad in Darwin. So I contacted my younger brother in Canberra and asked, “what are you guys up to?”. He replied, “not much, but we’ve started a band – wanna join us?”
And so began my love of playing and creating music. I headed south for Canberra and moved in with my brother Darcy and his buddy Steve. We wrote, played, and had a fantastic few years in that band, The Martins (name taken from the family next door to where they jammed who reported them to the local constabulary for noise pollution).
However, like so many bands starting to make waves on their local scene, The Martins went the way of the Dodo. From the ashes, I formed my 2nd band, Griffin, with Darcy, and a couple of other guys we’d known for years. Unfortunately, Darcy was unable to stick it out, and after what seemed like a thousand line-up changes, Griffin found its feet with some very experienced local players. We released two independent singles (This World and Perfect Nightmare) that received high-rotation commercial airplay throughout Canberra and New South Wales, and had their respective film clips aired on ABC TV’s Rage program and Melbourne’s Channel 31. We were lucky enough to pick up performances at two fantastic festivals (NEMO in Boston, USA, and Fuse in Adelaide, South Australia), and support some quality acts like Pete Murray, Evermore, Dave Graney and The Androids.
But yet again, just as Griffin started to achieve some level of success, things took an unforeseen turn. The guitarist (the extremely talented Malcolm McAllister – ex Henry’s Anger) was posted overseas with work, and my willingness to go through the audition process to find someone of Mal’s calibre and character, combined with my dwindling tolerance for Canberra winters pushed me in a direction I wasn’t really expecting - I found myself a tad lost. So in April 2005, I decided to “get the hell out of Dodge”, and headed north to Brisbane.
I managed to quickly get involved in the local scene, playing quite a few solo acoustic gigs around town. Word of mouth put me in touch with a local producer, and after a couple of chats (that also lead to an International Publishing Deal) we made an EP, “All You Leave Behind”, with several of its tracks making the International Song Writing Competition and Q-Music Song Writing Competition short lists. The end result was a very professional product, but not one that I felt “fit me” properly. As a result, began concentrating on more writing, some demo’s and searching for a producer/engineer I could work closely with and focus on a sound that I wanted.
Eventually, I met up with ARIA-nominated Engineer/Producer Anthony Lysenko, who’d worked extensively with Pete Murray, Xavier Rudd, etc. Anthony and I connected straight up, and saw eye-to-eye on almost every idea I had – almost J. It’s a big album – filled with some of my earliest songs; some songs I’d never given a second thought to - until Anthony said, “That’s a keeper”; and some new ones. I love where this album is going. It’s been a VERY long time coming, but to me, it’s been worth every minute of it. It’s my first baby, and hopefully not my last, and it’s something I’m very proud of. I hope you’ll like it too.
We’re expecting a mid 2015, belated birth :-)