John K has a lot of love (and everything else) to share

Kathryn Van Winkle, HiE correspondent

We all depend on distractions and, for a lot of us, that takes the form of music. On Oct. 7, I had the privilege to attend a Zoom meeting with John K. If you do not recognize the name, you may recognize his song, “If we never met,” which went viral back in 2019. That song was dedicated to his lovely wife and was his “love letter” to her. We even got to meet his lovely pit-mix, Lily, which he sleeps with every night when she crashed the Zoom.

Firstly, we talked about his sound, as well as his writing process, which naturally got all funky due to COVID-19. He talked about the difficulty of trying to write over Zoom and how he was thankful for his team and all of his friends who have helped him over the years, especially during lockdown.

He said that his own life during the pandemic has not been that bad for him, and his positivity during all this insanity is admirable. This positivity is something he has used throughout his music career because hate comments are something that all artists deal with, but John happily embraces these comments as proof that he is doing well. He said that “if you have haters, you are doing something real” and that it says more about their characters than his. He also told us that when dealing with hate, we just needed to have faith.

After that, we transitioned into negativity and fears. He explained to us that he still has days of doubt and that, at first, he was afraid of being accepted. But once he started to let all that anxiety go, he knew he had nothing to worry about because “there are no failures in the music industry but quitters.” 

Then we moved on to the fun, positive stuff. Someone asked what inspired him and what he hoped to do with his music. He talked about how his wife is a big inspiration for him, but on a technical level, he focuses on the melody and surrounds himself with lots of great lyricists. John explained that he hopes that his music will connect to others on a personal level. His song “If we never met” had been a love letter to his wife and he felt that people being able to relate proved that vulnerability wins, and that honesty is the best way to connect with those around you. 

The last thing we talked about was decompressing and the future. John told us that when he decompresses, he gets rid of his phone and just hangs out with his dog and his wife. He also likes to put his energy into a different outlet, like cooking or a creative project. 

As for what’s next, he did not spill much, but told us that he is constantly setting goals for himself. He did divulge that he was “two projects ahead” and that his coming collaborations were “dope.” One was the new single “Cheap Sunglasses” that came out last month, and the other is his debut project “Love + Everything Else” that is set for Nov. 13. 

I’d like to thank John K for taking the time to talk to us during this turbulent time. He was incredibly kind and humble during the entire interview. 

–Nov. 4, 2020–