Born in NYC and raised in Raleigh NC, Jordan Okrend is a young singer/songwriter and performer who is ready to make a lasting mark. Having first picked up the guitar at the age of 7, Jordan hasn’t slowed down since with his love for his instrument and for the crafting of memorable melodies. Growing up in a house with diverse musical flavor, Jordan became a sponge in the musical sense. By the time he was finishing high school, Jordan was versed in Rock, Jazz, R&B, Reggae and Bluegrass, had written scores of original songs, played countless gigs in his home state, and was accepted and later attended the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.
What comes to mind when you hear Jordan Okrend is grooving sounds, infectious beats, gritty soulful bluesy vocals, smooth falsettos and great harmonies. With a universal appeal that touches both young and old alike, the lyrics are thoughtful, inspiring, longing and often provocative. You may hear influences of artists such as Ed Sheerin, Ben Harper, Lenny Kravitz and Marvin Gaye, but it is all Jordan Okrend. Jordan released his first two EP’s Unpredictable in the summer of 2010, and Rising Up, in early 2012. Both were received with positive acclaim. In Christmas, 2014, Jordan released his latest EP, World Keeps Turnin featuring both a band and acoustic version of the title track plus 4 more tracks that you won’t be able to get out of your head. Jordan currently resides in NYC and performs throughout the east coast.
What inspires you to make music?
I think life itself inspires me to make music. I’ve always had the creative spirit in me and from a young age I began to write music and put my observations of the world into songs. Music to me is my essence and I think the world around me inspires me to write. By writing music, I can channel my emotional energy, my inner contemplations and also just have fun with it. Each moment and experience is an inspiration so the best way to capture that is with creating music.
Tell us about this project?
Go My Way is a song that talks about seeing possibilities and positivity in a world that seems the contrary. The world today seems especially challenging, crazy, and full of limitations. With this song I wanted to portray the power of the human spirit in going beyond the darkness of the work and experiencing the true vitality life has to offer. With this music video, I take the viewer on a journey through the subway and streets of NYC to show something can go your way in a crazy world.
Who were your musical inspirations growing up?
Growing up I was exposed to all different kinds of music. My dad listened to a lot of classic rock like the Beatles, Rolling Stones, The Who, Van Morrison, Bob Marley. The Beatles became a huge inspiration for me and as a songwriter. In my teenage years, I took a trip to Memphis and it changed my life. I was exposed to soul music in a new way. I began to fall in love with artists like Al Green, Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding etc. Soul music really inspired me as a musician and I definitely like the channel the soul when I’m singing and performing. I also grew up hearing a lot of Jazz and modern acoustic pop acts like Jack Johnson, Ben Harper, and Jason Mraz. I’ve had so many influences that it all kind of blends together for me and helped to create my own musical style.