A conservative kid grows up with a fondness and a knack for skating. After seeing the world and opening his eyes to new things, he gets hurt and works for the most notable in extreme sports until he catches a second wind in a whole new realm; singing. That’s been the footnotes of Jordan Lovelis‘ life up until this point. A point in which he toured California with Matt Costa and has written a handful of songs that touch on his upbringing and solitude. We covered all of the above and then some and this is our story…
Kendra: You seem to like to push yourself in various ways. As a skater physically and as a singer, you have to do so emotionally. Which do you think takes a bigger toll on your body overall?
Jordan Lovelis: Great question. They are both demanding in their own right. You have to be marketable doing both which is confusing and exhausting in the sense that you’re constantly evaluating your self-worth and asking yourself how to be relevant. The great thing about songwriting is that you can do it when your body starts to change physically. I never really recovered from breaking my ankle from skateboarding…songwriting is emotionally exhausting.
Mostly at the beginning which is the stage I’m in. Wearing your heart on your sleeve and playing for 10 people at a local bar that don’t care is tough. Sometimes it doesn’t feel worth it but then you play a show and people are receptive and it motivates you again. So they are both fun, exhausting, and satisfying, but I think songwriting demands more of my attention. It never leaves me. I’m constantly trying to find melodies or playing with words for lyrics.
Kendra: After skating came to a halt you seemed to land on your feet…well, in a career sense. Was singing Plan C if working with Shaun White hadn’t panned out, or do you think being on the road with him led you to what you’re doing now?
Jordan Lovelis: I was always using cameras even when I was trying to make a living off skateboarding. When I broke my ankle, I started editing a lot more because I couldn’t really do anything else. Working for Shaun just fell into place through a mutual friend. I never really wanted to be a “singer.” I’m not a great singer, but eventually, I had all these songs that I felt maybe some people out there could resonate with them. I think I’ll always work in film, and work towards being a director, but for now, writing songs and playing shows is very satisfying. Hopefully, it can last a while before I run out of money. Haha!
Kendra: Let’s talk more about the music. Being alone in LA is not a new sentiment but with so many people feeling that way in this city, we do have a million and one interpretations of that solitude. “I Got No One” is another. Was there a particular breaking point of your own loneliness that led to penning this song?
Jordan Lovelis: For me, loneliness seems to come in the biggest of cities. Strange how that works. I was going through a breakup and at the same time my best friend starting dating a former love interest. I felt like my life was crumbling. Sometimes you can’t hide how you feel. “I Got No One” stemmed from feeling like I had no one! Growing up conservative, a lot of my friends got married young and had kids.
I was in my mid-twenties still going to shows and drinking too much. I sort of had a quarter-life crisis like fuck should I have married my religious girlfriends from the past? But then I came to the conclusion that I would be miserable and I’m not ready to grow up. So, this song is about being inside your own head, feeling isolated in a crowded place. My darkest times have been when I’m in society or at a party and still feeling alone. At this point, it’s our own damn fault to crawl out of the cave and be social. Life comes fast, it’s good to wake up and be engaged.
Kendra: Time to merge two of your passions; music and pizza. If you had to compare your style to a pizza, what kind would it be and why? We’re talking crust, size, toppings, the whole pie.
Jordan Lovelis: Haha! I don’t know if pizza is a passion, but I definitely engage in a pie too often. I’d say a late night Dominoes. Plain cheese. It’s sloppy, messy but it can hit the fucking spot at 1 am and nothing else matters.
Kendra: Another single on the table is “Black & White.” The story behind it has a universal aura to it. Do you feel like you would’ve realized who you were aside from your parents if you hadn’t had the opportunity to see outside of that box via sports and music?
Jordan Lovelis: I think so, but it may have taken me a while. When I was really young I started listening to artists like Dylan and the Stones. I grew up in a small town and kind of always wondered what else was out there. I think I would have snapped eventually if I stayed in my suburb but I’m fortunate to have started traveling from skateboarding really young so they accelerated my worldview quickly. So yes, I’m sure I would have come to the same conclusion but it would’ve taken me a long time.
Kendra: You’ve noted that “Black & White” is directed at your mother. Has she heard? What were her thoughts?
Jordan Lovelis: Yes she has. Both of my parents came to a show recently and heard it. I dedicated it to them before I started playing it and they had never heard it. It was a very vulnerable moment but in the end, they are very supportive and we have a great relationship. I think it makes them sad, but it makes me sad too; we’re all in it together.
Kendra: You just got off the road with Matt Costa. How was that and what’s coming up for you? More touring, an EP?
Jordan Lovelis: It was so incredible. I had only played a handful of shows before opening for him so it was intimidating playing for sold out crowds but everybody was really nice and receptive. I’m in the studio for the next month off and on then I’ll be releasing an EP in July. Sorting out tour dates now. I’m really excited to get some music out in the world.