Mustard had the pleasure of speaking with Jaszy Shavers who recently released their EP “Carolina Soul” along with Tavaras Jordan. Together we discussed their creative process, their influences, and so much more! Check it out below!
1. Hello! Mustard is thankful and grateful to have you join them! How are you doing today?
Greetings and thank you so much for the opportunity to chat today. All is well! How are you?
2. You’re a singer, songwriter, and producer. Mustard wonders which came first? How do these intertwine?
I’ve been singing since my childhood in churches, musicals, talent shows and started recording original music at the age of 14 via an old PC and Audacity. Songwriting started in middle school after exploring poetry and studying artists such as Sade, Eric Benet and Whitney Houston. Although I’ve just about always played piano and guitar by ear, I didn’t start officially producing until 2016. When people ask it seems like it’s been a part of my life forever so I seldom think of each process separately and am so grateful for how each compliments the other.
3. Mustard is curious about your creative process. Could you share more about how you put together your songs? What is your songwriting process?
Every instance is unique. Sometimes my inspiration stems from a conversation with a friend, a melody I hear in a dream, life experiences, daydreams… Sometimes I start with a soft chord progression or lyrics written on the fly, sometimes I start with just a hook or freestyle and allow the music to speak through me. I like to let it all flow.
4. Who (or what) influences you?
Outside of my life experiences, my strongest influences are the artists and sounds I grew up hearing my Mom listen to. Marvin Gaye, Maxwell, Sade, Miles Davis, Anita Baker, Chaka Khan, Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, The Isley Brothers, Groove Theory, Jill Scott, Toni Braxton… the list can go on and on.
5. You describe your music as “The New Old School.” How have you revamped the old school sound to fit your voice and today’s current music landscape?
I know how “old school” music influenced me… how it inspired me and opened my mind to new ideas. I remember hearing Sade’s, “Lovers Rock” for the first time via a borrowed CD player on a road trip with my family and being fascinated by every aspect of it. So my vocal style, production style, song structure, engineering and storytelling are all combinations of who/what I admire and what feels good to me. I don’t seek to fit in anywhere. I simply create from within and pay homage to the legends before me.
6. You released “Sucker” in 2018. Was this song the beginning of the foundation for the new old school?
I honestly just wanted to vent. I wasn’t even thinking about my sound then. “Sucker” was birthed in 2018 with a Rode USB mic, Garageband and a wrinkled piece of paper with all my frustrations scribbled on it. No midi controller, no fancy studio. Just me on my bed, on a Sunday (just like the lyrics) and a need to get some things off my chest. That was also the first song I ever submitted for music distribution. Self-produced, self-written, engineered and arranged.
7. A few years later “Nostalgia (the beat tape)” dropped. Mustard loves the 90s vibes throughout the three songs. What producers or artists influenced these beats?
I just returned from California and crate digging in one of the largest record stores I had ever seen before. Rummaging through so many timeless hits reminded me of one of my favorite eras… the 90’s. Blasted that Zhane, De La Soul and A Tribe Called Quest and got to work.
8. “Who’s Gunna” was your first release of 2022. What inspired this single?
I knew that I wanted a modern bop with Summer approaching and love contrasting feel good music with melancholy lyrics. Ginuwine’s, “Pony” inspired the bassline and Jeremih & Ty Dolla $ign’s, “The Light” inspired the drum sequence. Immediately after, the rhodes came to me and the rest of the track started creating itself.
9. You just recently dropped “Carolina Soul” in collaboration with Tavaras Jordan. How do you define Carolina Soul? Is “Carolina Soul” something all humans can obtain? How did the partnership with Tavaras Jordan happen?
It is difficult to put it to words especially since the vibes are a combination of his and my experiences being from two different Carolinas. I’m from the Lowncountry so for me “Carolina Soul” is smooth and nostalgic, warm and soothing. That is the energy riding around where I’m from. Think palm trees, ocean breeze and lots of flavor.Tavaras and I connected over a year ago while collaborating on AJ Snow’s, “Pink Champagne” album. Shortly after, he stopped by my home studio while visiting the A and our energies just synced. Our love for music is undeniable and after creating “Divine” we knew we were destined to work. It was simply a matter of choosing the vibe we wanted to create and started knocking the tracks out back to back. Tavaras was actually the one who chose the title, “Carolina Soul” and as soon as he said it I knew it was perfect.
10. What’s next for Jaszy Shavers?
Lots! I just can’t say too much yet but expect a few more full projects to drop before the end of the year as well as several major collaborations.
11. Where can readers listen to your music?
My music is on every digital platform plus Instagram, Youtube, and soon to be on Bandcamp, Facebook and Twitch!