Wednesday 30 Jul

Power Pyramid - The God Drums

Power Pyramid doesn’t have much patience for nonsense. That appears to be the takeaway from the Oklahoma City quintet’s last 10 months, which brought The God Drums in September, the Insomnia EP in January and its latest, self-titled effort in July.

07/29/2014 | Comments 0

TJ Mayes - "When Love Comes Down"

’50s era rock ’n’ roll had been long overdue for a rebirth. Thankfully, the stockpile of capable luminaries has not been in short supply over the past few years. 

07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Boare - "playdatshit"

The world is in the midst of an electronic music renaissance, and you find most of this boon of producers laying claim to the club-friendly, bass-dropping variety, holing up in the the free-flowing world of hip-hop beatmaking or pitching their tent on the out-there, boundary-pushing EDM camp.
07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Broncho - "Class Historian"

Broncho has never been hurting in the hook department. The success of the trio’s 2011 debut, Can’t Get Past the Lips, was predicated mostly on its ability to marry melodies with kinetic guitar riffs and anarchic energy. Yet we’ve heard nothing to the degree of pure pop catchiness on display in “Class Historian,” the new single from Broncho’s upcoming sophomore album, Just Enough Hip to Be Woman.
07/23/2014 | Comments 0

Manmade Objects - Monuments

No one wants to be forgotten; everyone wants some sort of legacy, a mark they leave behind as they exit this life for whatever lies beyond.

And for as long as there has been death, there have been monuments — whether austere or understated, abstract or concrete, prominent or tucked away in private — erected by the ones they loved to assure that remembrance, at least for a time.
07/15/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Calvin and jobs

Calvin and jobs

Norman singer/songwriter John Calvin sees his occupation as letting listeners know what it feels like to live in worse parts of the world

Joshua Boydston April 13th, 2011

John Calvin and The Calvary
10 p.m. Thursday
Coach’s Brewhouse, 110 W. Main, Norman, 321-2739

Releasing an album is cause for celebration, and Norman-based singer/ songwriter John Calvin did his share as he let loose of his second album, “Wish Alloy.” But, like a good artist, he didn’t stop there.

“When you make an album, it’s a snapshot of you in that point of time — a sonic photo album, you could say. It was nice to have them done and share with people,” he said. “It’s not only a tool for self-promotion, but also self-analysis. It showed me all my inconsistencies and inadequacies.”

The record — brimming with simple and upbeat folk, indie rock and blues ditties — has had a few months to settle. While he enjoys the finished product, much time since has been spent looking at how it could have been better.

“I don’t hate my songs, and I hate the perfectionist attitude. I just want them to be better,” Calvin said. “Songs are never completed. All these songs are in transit. Like one of the sound engineers told me, ‘You never finish recording an album; you just abandon it.’” Not that it’s all bad … “It portrayed growth and adaptation, the evolution of my sound. It shows your craftsmanship and how you’ve learned to build,” he said. “If I was a painter, those would be my first couple of sketches.”

A new batch of songs is quickly cropping up that will assemble into a new album within a year’s time. A planet rife with devastating problems is the perfect muse for the anthropology student who is perpetually in tune with the climate of the world at large. He’s one of a dwindling number of artists who really care about spreading a message that goes deeper than love; it seems appropriate that Calvin, with his affinity for polyester shirts and a wild mane of hair, quite easily could pass for a young Bob Dylan.

“With the stuff going on in Japan, and the Libyan conflict and the Palestinian/Gaza conflict,” he said, “there’s terrible shit happening everywhere. It’s the social function of an artist to help people hear about and relate to these things, and offer their abilities and talents to the awareness and support of the people who are in the fray helping out.”

It’s not so much of their pain being his gain, but making sure everyone else knows how it feels.

“These people can’t walk down the street without having to worry about a Howitzer shell flying past their head,” Calvin said. “I can’t adequately express how these people are feeling, but I can express about how I feel about what they are dealing with. From what I’ve seen, heard and felt, it hurts.”

It won’t be long before Calvin spreads his message and music beyond the bounds of Oklahoma, but first things first.

“I’m going to graduate, and I’m not going to get a real job, because my real job is music,” he said. “I’m going to hit the road after I graduate, find myself in a new place. Maybe Nashville … but I’ll still be around for a few years. I’ve got some more things to show Norman first.”

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