Wednesday 23 Jul
 
 

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

Admirals - Amidst the Blue

Sometimes it helps to not be very good.

Some of the best albums and artists were born out of happy accidents owed to varying degrees of early suckage — the perfect note or chord for a song found by missing the one you are aiming for, failed mimicry of an idol bearing something entirely new and great instead.

07/09/2014 | Comments 0

Kierston White - Don't Write Love Songs

The Tequila Songbirds have become just as beloved as about any group around these parts. And how could they not?

Featuring a revolving cast of the Sooner State’s most badass female performers, it’s a power hour of some of the best songwriting coming out of central Oklahoma. Sure, they might not technically be family, but they are clearly a band of sisters all the same, bonded by the same brand of whiskey running through their veins.

07/01/2014 | Comments 0

Depth & Current - Dysrhythmia

"Overproduced" is a term thrown around all too indiscreetly nowadays, usually applied when the thing that sticks out about a song or album is how it sounds rather than how it is constructed. Yet some of the most compelling albums ever crafted embodied a certain aesthetic that was just as skillfully and meticulously put together as any Bob Dylan or Miles Davis record — which is to say production is as crucial to our enjoyment of music as much as anything else; it's also the most overlooked.
06/24/2014 | Comments 0

Weak Knees - “IceBevo”

Indie rock has been in a good place as of late. Not caring about being cool is the new cool, and a couple of dudes on guitar, bass and drums can make catchy, earworm songs without being armed to the gills with computer software and vintage synthesizers.
06/17/2014 | Comments 0
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Golden path


Local singer Jacob Abello, aka Prettyboy, paves his own way toward pop stardom.

Joshua Boydston September 18th, 2013

Jacob Abello has come a long way.

Ten years ago, he was on the verge of signing a recording deal with a Christian music label as a singer-songwriter.

Five years ago, he debuted pop-leaning alternative rock tunes that delved into his own identity and religious struggles. Largely unaware that he was even working on an album, he debuted in a stoic, sold-out show at Opolis in Norman, wearing an unassuming gray shirt.

These days, Abello often wears little more onstage than a sparkling gold spandex singlet and works the crowd like David Bowie, firing songs from his pop radio cannon.

Abello knows now what he wants to be — a pop star. His music now reflects that to the same degree his shows have. He has adopted the name Prettyboy, helping signify the sonic shift to an ’80s-era sound of suave vocals blended with synth-enhanced beats.

“I needed a name to signify the transition,” Abello said. “I like that it’s something that is used in a negative way, but I’m treating it as a positive thing … which is what I do with pop songs, in a way.

“Coming out has played a big part in it, going from Christian singer to touching my crotch and dressing in drag,” Abello said with a laugh. “It felt natural. The more I was comfortable with myself and my sexuality, the more I was able to be confident with myself as an artist … and I have to be comfortable in my own skin, because that’s pretty much all I’ve been wearing lately.”

The type of music Abello has produced evolved enormously over the last decade, but the role it plays has stayed the same: A way to deal with life and the world at large. It was especially powerful and necessary in his full-length debut, Nothing But Gold, which helped him transition from his old self to the one we see today.

“It was how I dealt with any questions I had about life and myself. I figured it out through writing songs,” Abello said. “That record was very much about growing up and coming into your own. Performing those songs live really helped me figure out who I was as an artist.”

Abello is also discovering a bigger audience. He auditioned and received a callback for American Idol earlier this year and took advantage of the momentum to release Dejvická, a two-song EP recorded in Prague, Czech Republic. The release debuted a more radio-friendly sound that he’s further exploring and refining in his upcoming sophomore album, to be produced by longtime friend and collaborator Jarod Evans at Blackwatch Studios in Norman. It’s planned for release later this fall — four years after his debut.

Abello also is in the midst of a Kickstarter campaign to help finance the album, offering prizes like tattoos of donors initials on his body, his signature gold leotard and a spa day. It runs through September.

“I’m unabashedly a pop singer wanting to be a pop star, and I’m fine with that,” Abello said. “It’s what I want to do, and even if it never happens, I can live that dream out on the stage every time I perform.”

Search “Jacob Abello” at Kickstarter.com and hear Dejvická at prettyboymusic.bandcamp.com.

Hey! Read This:
Prettyboy — Dejvická review

 
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