During the Mayfest festival, I was able to ask singer/songwriter, VanRiss (Jonathan Van Risseghem), a few questions after his set.
How long have you been making music?
I made my first album, released it in 2009. Spent all 2008 writing and recording it. So, ten years I guess.
What made you decide you wanted to do music?
I still remember the first day when I was 8 years old and wrote my first song. I have always liked art of any kind and music just really, no pun intended, just struck a chord with me. From there on, that was my central passion in life. I’ve been doing it ever since. My first song was a really high quality christian-rap song, so I have come a long way from then.
Is this your first project that you actually released music from?
I had a band in high school. I wasn’t the singer, I was kinda writing the songs and letting someone else do it. He didn’t show up for studio session and out of angst, I just started singing on the songs and I went home and played it for some people. ‘I did this. Spite this guy,’ and people were like ‘I actually think you are pretty good, I think you should keep doing this.’ That was my segue from being a guitar player in a local band to writing and recording my own stuff, so it was an interesting process. Happy accident.
You played a song that wasn’t on either of your already released albums. Are there plans to release it?
There are plans to release it this fall. It is called “Chandelier Tree.” There is this really cool tree near the Silver Lake/Los Angeles area that has a ton of chandelier trees in it, literally a chandelier tree. I was playing some shows in Los Angels and my wife and I had just had our newborn, she was four or five months old, and we had a little bit of time afterwards and it was our first sandwiched in little moment of time together for the first time in a few months of sleeplessness so I wrote a song about it.
Where can they find you?
All the links are on VanRiss.com