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Nate Banks: Rising Star

Nate Banks is a Junior at Vanderbilt majoring in English/Creative Writing. He has come a long way with his music and is finally releasing an EP, coming out April 9th. Nate is incredibly talented and a true celeb on the rise! So make sure you check out his music and get ready to hear more on April 9th!

1. How long have you been writing/playing music?

I’ve been singing and making up tunes for as long as I can remember. I started playing the saxophone when I was 10 years old, and got into Jazz when I was in middle school. Improvising on the sax was the first avenue for musical expression that I really became passionate about and got recognized for. I started learning guitar at age 12, wrote my first song when I was 15, and since then songwriting has been my passion.

2. What should we expect from your EP (in terms of style of music, lyrical content, etc.)?

The EP, “Give Me a Shot,” (titled after track 2) is overall a fun, summer pop record. Sonically it’s pretty eclectic – each of the songs has a distinct feel from the others. One I’d describe as a modern pop take on the jazz standard form, another is a Memphis soul vibe turned contemporary radio anthem, one is a combination of folk-pop and a crispier, crunchier version of 80’s piano rock production, and another is sonically like The Script + U2 – though my voice isn’t much like either of the two.

Lyrically it’s all about things I’ve experienced and felt in the past few years. Though lately I’ve been diving into some tougher lyrical content, at the time I wrote these songs for the EP I gravitated towards the uplifting. As a kid I was always pretty cheerful, and I think this first EP reflects that attitude. It covers the anticipation, excitement, and frustration of young love, the desire to be trusted in a relationship, the carefree attitude that can result from being securely loved, and the pure bliss of summer. 

3. How has being in Nashville changed your experience with music?

Nashville is incredible – better than I ever expected! If I weren’t here, I doubt I’d be pursuing music 100% as I am now

4. What was your inspiration for most of the music on this album?

Life! I’m always trying to express my experiences in ways that others can connect to, and convey those experiences through the melody and arrangement as well as the lyrics. 

5. What was the recording process like? How did you get from having written the songs to these fully recorded tracks?

It was exciting, tiring, and ultimately a huge learning experience.

After writing a bunch of songs this summer in Nashville, and asking friends which ones they liked best, I picked these 4, and made demo recordings of them on my laptop, writing out the parts for a full band, and modeling how I wanted the arrangements to be on the record. I knew producer/engineer Matt McVaney through a mutual friend, I heard some of his work and showed him some of my songs, and we dug each other’s stuff. So we were both excited about working together from the beginning. 

We tracked drums first with a guy Matt knew, named Ty Smith – his playing really added energy to the record! Then Matt played bass himself, and I played most of the other instruments – I even got to work in some saxophone on Summertime! I did vocals after everything else was recorded, and then we spent forever tweaking the mixes, listening over and over until we were just totally sick of the songs (only half kidding), and finished everything up by the end of the fall semester. Now, after taking a break from them, I’m totally pumped about how the tracks sound. I think this will be a great way to kick off my music career, and I can’t wait for everyone to finally hear it!

Download the lead single for free: www.natebanksmusic.comFacebook: facebook.com/natebanksmusicTwitter: https://twitter.com/nate_banksiTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/some-people-single/id963948873?uo=4Spotify: http://open.spotify.com/album/6Brpf8kRjaMA7UM3QKiduw

 

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