You may be wondering what Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, and The Backstreet Boys, have in common with Sounds of Hoboken performer, Jay Loftus.
Well, they are all signed to KNS Production Company. It may not be a shock that the first three names are signed to a big label, but for this New Jersey native, signing with the big dogs is still something new. Embarking on his first tour as you read this article, Jay says he feels he has finally “cut the ribbon” on his career.
“I used to have a day job, a comfort blanket and do music on the side,” he said. “But in the recent months, I’ve realized I wouldn’t be able to pursue this and that, it was time to be all music all the time,” he continued.
Discovering his passion for music at only 5 years old, Jay began his musical journey where most kids do: on the piano. However, what came next was not so ordinary. Jay pursued piano until age 9, when he discovered his love for the guitar. I guess you could say that’s where it all really began for this fun-loving, relatable musician.
“My guitar teacher saw my genuine ability to play, and then started pushing me towards song-writing,” he said. Jay stayed with his guitar teacher for over a decade, and at age 20, she “signed him up to play at a birthday party.”
“I knew it was a set up just seconds after being there,” he said. His guitar teacher, fully-faithful in Jay’s talent, requested a visit from someone at KNS to hear Jay play and sing. “I was 20 or 21 at the time,” he said. “It was a nerve-wracking experience. My teacher always instilled in me the fact that in the music industry you only get one shot. I was freaking out; if I screwed up they wouldn’t take me. It was a roller coaster of emotion,” he said.
Although nervous for the performance, Jay knew his teacher would only sign him up for something he was fully equipped to handle.
“She was right to plan that ‘birthday party,’” he said. “They called me one day later and asked me to sign,” he said with a modest chuckle.
As his own songwriter, all of Jay’s songs are close to his heart and original to his voice, but he has a special closeness to a song called “For Now” on his first album. “It’s the song I preformed for KNS,” he said. “It proved to me I have a legitimate talent and career in music, as well as the ability to do something I really love for a long time,” Jay said enthusiastically.
Overall, Jay explains the style of his music as fun. “It has layers to it. It’s a cool beat, and something exciting to listen to, but if you are looking for something a little deeper, my lyrics also have messages and lessons,” he said.
As a solo artist himself, Jay finds inspiration in the works of classic artists like Paul Simon and Billy Joel. “I also really like Coldplay,” he said. “But I’m more into artists than bands overall.”
While Jay’s current tour encompasses colleges, sororities, and local radio stations, he explains that his major goal this year is to “do another tour with bigger shows and more people.” “My favorite thing about being on tour is meeting new people, and I think it always will be.”
“On this tour, I hope to hit every angle and build my followers,” he said. Beginning in November, Jay will hit the road- traveling the entire East Coast. “I don’t know where we will start, all I know is we will end in Georgia and are planning on playing everywhere we can,” he laughed.
Although hoping for “bigger shows and more people” as his career continues, Jay admits his first love is “Mom and Pop shops,” around Hoboken and all of NJ. “My roots are in New Jersey, I lived in Staten Island, and my studio is right across the Hudson in New York,” he said proudly.
“I’m no stranger to Hoboken and absolutely love La Isla, it’s just great soul food,” he said.
In regards to music, Jay found Hoboken’s Sounds of Music festival incredibly rewarding. “I like to shine above the well- known people and hot spots, I love supporting local places and businesses. Playing at Pier A Park and the Hoboken Farmer’s Market was so cool.”
“Pier A Park is easily my favorite place to play music,” he said. For more information on Jay, you can check out his official website at www.jayloftusmusic.com, or follow him on Twitter and Tumbler at .com/imjayloftus.
If you like Jay’s Facebook page, you can download a few of his songs free! In addition, he also launched a kickstarter campaign to help him with his tour: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/jayloftus/jay-loftus-has-3-dollars-in-his-pocket-and-is-goin