5 Questions Answered About Chicago's Resident Crooner
Updated: Mar 7
J. Dean is my first full-length studio project releasing May 12, 2023 on all major streaming platforms. Follow me on your favorite platform for realtime updates around new content.
For the past two years, I have been quietly chipping away at plans to record and release my first full-length studio album. The planning began not long after my duet project, The Good Judy Tapes, was released and has been ever-evolving since, but the road from start to finish was anything but straight. I faced many obstacles and challenges that required me to be flexible and persistent. Though this made the recording process strenuous and tested my creative gusto, I kept my eyes on the task and created a project I'm very proud to share with anyone who'll listen.
Since announcing the release date of my self-titled album, J. Dean, I've received an overwhelming amount of support and questions surrounding the project and my music in general. Instead of responding to all of this "fan mail" (that's right.. that's what I am calling it) individually, I thought I'd address the most frequently asked questions here.
How many tracks are on the debut album?
I am releasing eight new recordings. Two of these tracks are original songs, and six are covers. The music on this album spans ten decades, with the oldest song written in 1924. I find this interesting because it means there are almost 100 years between the newest and oldest song on this project.
What was the inspiration?
From the jump, I knew I wanted to include a song that Judy Garland recorded, so I started the song selection process by narrowing down which of her songs were my favorite. Garland's catalog led me to two albums, her 1956 self-titled LP, Judy, and her 1961 album, recorded live at Carnegie Hall. Both of these albums inspired the development of my self-titled LP. From there, I tried to choose songs from artists I had yet to cover or genres I had yet to perform. For example, Harry Connick Jr. and Jerry Lee Lewis were two legends I pulled inspiration from in my original tunes. Lewis (and Elvis) also significantly influenced the rockabilly sound you hear on several tracks.
What genre is your music?
I love this question because the answer continues to evolve with my brand as an artist. In a loose sense, my music hovers in the Traditional Pop category, think Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, Doris Day, Etc; however, if you look at my catalog as a whole, I pull a lot of influences from Jazz, Swing, Country and a range of music from the 40s, 50s, and 60s.
Do you enjoy the recording process?
Unequivocally, yes. I've spoken about this often, mainly when I was producing the Crooner Has It podcast, but I have terrible stage fright. So, I prefer recording music to performing live because it allows me to focus on the emotion and performance that is often hindered when my nerves are raging in front of a live audience. Not to say that I don't enjoy performing because I do, but the studio is less stressful for me. To me, there is a lot more that goes into planning and recording albums when compared to planning a live performance, but I love collaborating with other artists and flexing my creative muscles. Also, the feeling of accomplishment once a studio project is complete is unmatched.
When will there be a holiday album?
I receive this question all the time, which is great because I would love to record a holiday album with all of the classics on it; however, it's hard to justify the production cost for an album like this, knowing it will only be listened to a few weeks out of the year. The market is also incredibly saturated with holiday music. So, there are no plans for a full-length holiday album at this time, but you should pre-save my upcoming releases and share my music with your friends and family. That way, I'll be one step closer to the long-awaited crooner Christmas album many of you have asked for.
Follow me on social media using the handle @jerasondean.