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Interview | Dan Godlin

July 23, 2012
By: Megan Washington

Loving On Empty came out in June. How long did it take you from start to finish to complete?
I started this album in the beginning of 2009 and finished the end of 2011. Juggling college at the same time, it took me almost three years to complete.

Which track off the record changed the most during the recording process?.
I think “Lay Down” changed the most. When I wrote it, I imagined it much softer. But once we got into the studio, we decided to turn it into more of a rock song with a driving chorus and funky rhythm change in the bridge. We ended up recording a softer version of the song after all (just in case we liked it better), but ultimately, the up-tempo rock version was too hard to resist.

You were working on your album, Loving On Empty, while you were still a college student, correct? There are musicians out there who tend to think schooling isn’t the best option for them when they want to pursue music. So, how do you think schooling has benefited you as a musician and your album in general?
I was in and out of school and moved around a lot while I was working on my album. I took two semesters off to focus all my energy on the music, and although I didn’t complete everything during this time, taking a break from school gave me the freedom to explore every aspect of the writing and recording process. There was a time when I was honestly considering not going back to school… But when I re-evaluated the risk/reward, I chose to go back to school at NYU, graduate with a bachelors degree in Psychology, and then put everything into my music career.

“Did She Look” is your current single. It’s been getting quite the response from listeners. Did you have a particular goal in mind for when you were releasing it as a single?
We were debating among a few tracks to release as the single, but since this album happened to be out in the heart of summertime, it only felt right to go with a bright, catchy, up-tempo sing along song like “Did She Look.”

Has your goal been met? Has it since changed?
As exciting as it is, releasing this album is only the starting point for me. Yes, it took a ton of hard work and dedication, and I feel accomplished in many ways, but this is just the beginning. Little improvements that I’ve made along the way feel like stepping stones, but my greater goal – to be a successful, inspiring, and innovative music mogul – still remains.

The music industry is different today than it was five, ten, fifteen years ago. How much of a role do you think social media plays in the success of an artist in today’s society?
Social media is HUGE! It’s amazing to think how the music industry ever functioned without this whole Twitter, Facebook, YouTube phenomenon. I think we, as artists, should be thankful for this technological boom because it has allowed us the opportunity to reach so many more fans, on a deeper, more personal level. Some people love to hate it, and others hate to love it… But in reality, social media has provided us with all the tools we need to be successful. We have the power; it’s all about how we use it!

How has it helped with your success?
Dan: Keeping my followers updated with my life on a daily basis is one thing… But getting honest and direct feedback from them about every aspect of my career has truly helped me in my development as an artist. Now, instead of getting advice from only my team, I have an entire network of friends and fans that can answer my questions, offer relevant suggestions, and give support or criticism whenever they feel like it, all with the click of a button. I’m still shocked with the amount of feedback I get, and I can’t thank my fans enough for it!

Right now you are on the Camplified tour. How has that been going?
Dan:The Camplified tour has been incredible! I’m having such a blast hanging with the campers and performing for them throughout the day. I was a camper for six years and a counselor for three… and I must say, it’s absolutely a pleasure to be back in “camp life.” I’m convinced that it’s impossible to get the same type of energy from anywhere else in the world. There’s just nothing like it. Due to my past experience, I feel I’m really connecting with the kids at these camps, and overall, this tour has been such a rewarding experience. Can’t wait for these last three shows!

What’s next for you when that tour is over?
Dan: After Camplified, I’ll be traveling to Los Angeles to shoot a music video for “Did She Look”. I’ll also be looking into college tours for the fall, writing for film, TV, and advertising for Experience Music Group, and beginning to record my second album in New York City.

What is your one go-to song that when you hear it, it instantly reminds you of summer?
Dan: Semi-Charmed Life by Third Eye Blind… Hands down.

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