"If you're not the worst guy in your band, then find a new band."
Jonathan Colman (@friendshipwizard) is the bass guitarist for the futuristic funk band Muscle Tough (@muscletough). They've opened for Lotus at Capital Theatre, played at The Fillmore in their hometown of Philadelphia and performed alongside Jon Fishman, co-founder of the band Phish.
In this episode:
How Weird Al Yankovic was Jonathan’s introduction to rap (13:03)
How Jonathan went straight from graduating from Duquesne University, to touring across the country with his band 28 North (38:12)
Why he had to walk away from his dream (41:31)
How working as a lunch lady helped pull Jon out of a dark time (43:24)
How Muscle Tough came together (54:46)
What it's like performing at a large venue like The Fillmore (1:03:16)
And a conversation around mental health (1:18:32)
Listen to Muscle Tough's newest release covering Sheryl Crow's "Every Day Is a Winding Road."
You can DM Jonathan for private music lessons at @friendshipwizard
Make sure to subscribe and tell a friend to listen to new episodes of After School Program released every Tuesday at 5am EST!
Connor Heine 0:02
What's going on everyone? Welcome to after school program. In this episode we talk with Jonathan Coleman. JOHN is the incredible bass player for the futuristic funk band muscle tough. muscle is tough. The Philadelphia bass band has opened for groups like Lotus and dope pod. And it's performed with john Fishman of the band fish. listeners of our podcast should be somewhat familiar with the music of muscle tough as they have so kindly let us use their song muscle funk as our theme music. In this episode, we talked with john about touring the US immediately after graduating college, having to take a brief break from his dream to focus on his mental health. And his journey establishing himself in the Philadelphia music scene. Here is Jonathan Coleman.
Zach McHale 0:43
Was it like the company you're with? That was like, Alright, we're doing zooms now. Or were you like, well, I can't teach in class anymore. Yeah. And were you
Connor Heine 0:50
doing any zooms before the pandemic? Or?
Jonathan Colman 0:52
I have not heard of zoom at all? No, yeah. So like I, I had elected to go with my fiance to Costa Rica. Right when it was getting bad in March, and we, you know, we could have not gone but she had a gig and I had a free ride. And we went and it was worth it. It was glorious. What was her gig in Costa Rica. So she is a visual artist who is like, in a kind of spiritual capacity. Okay, so she's known for Tarot decks, and she does everything posters, calendars, pins, clothing, various different decks, all sorts of collaborations with different types of artists. So she was there for like a woman in business retreat, okay, talking about how she grew her small business. And I was talking to my boss from my lesson company. And he was filling me in all about what he thought we should do. And he told me about the program zoom. So when we got back, and we're quarantining, I downloaded it and we tested it out together. And everybody was doing it, every freaking musician scrambling to figure this thing out. And I learned how to put it through my digital audio workstation, I use a thing called Ableton Live. And I would learn how to be able to like have that view, offered orally to my students. And then also I could show them visually what I was doing on the screen with it. And it ended up being this great teaching tool. There's like a marker board built into zoom that I use all the time, I'm sharing my screen. And also, I don't have to drive around anyone's home. I'm seeing all these students Monday through Sunday, with so much flexibility and a lot of high efficiency. And it's been great. Right? Yeah,
Zach McHale 2:41
it makes me wonder if I mean, maybe that'll you'll keep that up to some capacity. When things pass if somebody is like, I don't know, further away or whatever. But I guess there is that part where in person you really can't get that experience?
Jonathan Colman 2:53
Yeah, you can't beat it. You know, it's like I'm working on some I'm working with a lot of beginner guitarists and pianists and, you know, having me there to one physically do it and show them that it's possible and also act as an accompanist for them learning something simple, like Twinkle twinkle little star, it's indispensable. And I haven't found a way that is latency free to do that. And but I think that I would still continue to teach virtually like this. I always kind of did. I used Google Hangouts and I would teach more serious bass students. But uh, you know, being able to do this, I think that I would probably one drive around maybe an extra day of the week because I have so many new students and then to I would definitely be like, Listen, I can't see everybody but if you're still down to do virtual, I am going to make time for that and and, uniquely, I'm almost financially in a better position than when I was a touring musician or even like a local gigging musician.
Connor Heine 3:51
I remember you saying that a couple months because
Jonathan Colman 3:52
mon My car has never been driven less. So like, I'm gonna buy it. I'm not over the miles on the lease and everything's looking awesome. They're saving money on gas. I'm not in wah wah two times a day traveling around getting coffee and food, I mean, and then not gigging, not every gig is going to give you food and drink. So not buying food and drink and not staying and having an extra food and drink. I'm not traveling to Vermont and having breakfast, lunch and dinner on the road. So I'm like, really, really saving and earning more. And it's this weird Limbo where I don't get the soul food of playing with people and collaborating in the present. But then I'm not financially devastated by the realities of that lifestyle. And I don't know I, I always try to err on the side of optimism. And I'm able to find that today and I'm grateful.
Zach McHale 4:49
Yeah, no, that's great that things that kind of worked out to you to that point. And then so how do you and cons know each other then because I just know
Jonathan Colman 5:01
I'm telling you, right I'm the guest. Yeah. So it's also nice to be a guest. I sent so many meeting invites. So this was like, Wow, so this is what it's like.
Connor Heine 5:09
Yeah, I made you wait like a couple minutes? I don't know.
Unknown Speaker 5:14
Zach McHale 5:16
a trip. He uses that waiting room is it? Yeah. Like I'm sweating while
Jonathan Colman 5:20
I was holding the water longer than I wanted. Also, for those of us who's listening and can't see Connor on a trip to New York thought of me when he saw some Deadpool street art. Yeah, and brought it home safely as a gift and I cherish it to this day.
Connor Heine 5:36
Did you? Did you hold that up just for me? Did you hold that up thinking that was gonna be like your badass intro into the podcast because you thought that video let's let's say both. Okay,
Jonathan Colman 5:45
so I'm going to now tell you the story of me and cons. So we we met a tale of two similarly looking guys. We met while cons was doing summer intern work through you are it's for an artist named Ben Arnold, who is like a Philadelphia royalty singer songwriter. And he has a great legion of fans and supporters and audience and he's an ex vn darling. And he's one of my favorite people. I fucking love Ben Arnold.
Connor Heine 6:23
Yeah, I'm I met Ben. Like you said it you arts Ben was teaching a songwriting class that I took. And we hit it off and became good friends and then I needed an internship. And he was doing a bunch of shows that summer. Like in the tri state area, mainly just Pennsylvania and Philly. Okay, but a little outside Philly, and I think there was a couple jersey dancers, too. But yeah, it was it was great. And john was the bass player for Ben.
Unknown Speaker 6:49
Oh, nice. Okay. Yep, just
Jonathan Colman 6:51
really try and do not play so many notes.
Connor Heine 6:56
JOHN play so many notes in his original band called Mazel Tov, which I didn't know that band at the time. So I saw band. I saw john with Ben, which is, you know, like, a rock solid rock. You know, how would you describe it roots rock? I don't know. He does so many different things. But yeah, I
Unknown Speaker 7:14
mean, it's like, oh,
Jonathan Colman 7:15
man, it's Americana roots. It's rocking. It's soulful.
Unknown Speaker 7:20
Jonathan Colman 7:21
there's sugar in a bowl vocal comparisons, like people like he sounds like Randy Newman. And you're like, oh, maybe he does a little bit, but he's not Randy Newman. No, I think he's cooler than Randy Newman, not no offense to Toy Story, or Pixar if you guys are listening. But
Zach McHale 7:37
those are our sponsors. When you tag along with somebody like that, how, how much do you alter your playing style? Are you like trying to bring party yourself and part of what makes you a good musician to that? Or are you like, this is I know his kind of sound. Let me just adjust to do his thing. I kind of know what he wants out of the bass there.
Jonathan Colman 7:54
Well, I always want to kind of be like water in the cracks of the music just reacting and flowing and not really getting in the way of anything. And with Ben's thing, he'd seen me play a bunch and he'd asked me if I'd be interested. And I said, Yeah, and he's like, Man, you're too young or like you're new to jet.
Connor Heine 8:12
What did he see you playing? Like what?
Jonathan Colman 8:14
I think he just saw muscle tough a couple times. And then sauce, eyes and lore.
Connor Heine 8:19
I couldn't imagine seeing muscle toughest Ben. Just knowing Ben and being like, I want that bass player because like obviously, you're great in that band you shy but like, I could see him just being too many notes. That's always
Jonathan Colman 8:31
Yeah, yeah. So it was funny. Like the first rehearsal was so bad. He like he very casually, like his instruction leading up to it was so vague. He was like, just check out my music. Yeah. And he like sent me maybe two or three charts. And I like checked out those two or three songs. And we got together and they had like, gone to Europe. for him. His band called us Rouse. So they were in Europe, like no real communication. They get back we scheduled rehearsal, I get in the room. I like kind of no two songs. And he was very disappointed. And from now from this high perspective,
Zach McHale 9:15
I'm like, Oh, yeah, I really would have been too. And it kind of just sent me home. And are you thinking that you might not be coming back? Or? Well, I
Jonathan Colman 9:23
was more just like, motivated. Okay. Yeah. And so like, I had already been listening to the stuff and I stepped that up. We were coming back the next day and, and, you know, God was really with me, I, I stayed up all night. I do not joke about this. I fell asleep sitting in a chair with my bass on on my laptop. And then I had a whole nother day of work listening to the songs. I showed it up with the rehearsal without any charts and played, like 20 or more songs. Wow. So it was I don't know. I don't know why my manic brain allowed me to high function like that, because it
Zach McHale 10:02
definitely doesn't always work. Right? You could just go there and fall asleep,
Jonathan Colman 10:06
but but I was able to show up at the rehearsal and do it. And then he was like, Oh, this feels alright. And so now to further answer your question, if there is a specific bass part, I'm playing it, if there's a motif or something he's hearing or reaching for wanting to, I'm going to do that, and I'm going to do it every time. But then there's some times where it's like, Hey, man, like be a little more you or like, you can make this swim, or this can be busier, you're playing it too safe, then I get a little bit of encouragement to, you know, do something. And I learned so much from this band, it was like, a professional environment. And he really demanded excellence for everybody. And the drummer, a dear friend named Matty Mir, he has a philosophy about playing to the lyric of the song. And he really does that, well. He's never in the way of any words, he's often singing harmony. And then he supports what's happening when there isn't vocals beautifully. So Matt, and I have a great Drum and Bass relationship. And I just kind of followed him on that. And I would never get in the way talking about Matt mirror plane to the lyric. That really during
Connor Heine 11:10
Jonathan Colman 11:11
serving the song, so it's like, really, if there's like a lyric happening, I'm not going to be like playing a pentatonic lick that I'm hearing over the changes, I'm staying out of the way. And then if there is an opportunity to do something extra, maybe I will. And I certainly like to be melodic on bass and not just being like, a rock in a field. I want to be the birds in the sky as well. So that's kind of my philosophy about subbing, you know, I want to do what they want. Sometimes you get asked to do something, because you're you, and they want you to just do whatever the hell you're going to do. And, and that's that, and it's funny, like doing sub work, or hired session work, is you'll do work. And you might not hear that stuff for a year and a half, right? Like I did a bunch of work for a group called Minka. And there's their affiliate group. And they're produced by a guy named Harry Zelnick and I went over two days to work with them. And Harry's is the logic ninja chopping up my takes while I'm taking them and moving the parts around making loops. And everything sounded really cool. And then just now they're starting to be released. And it's like, I'm not involved in the release. I'm just tagged on Instagram, and I'm like, Oh, shit. There's like something I did a year ago, right now
Zach McHale 12:29
in the world. Like, you just walk out of there. And you're like, hope that comes out. All right, yeah.
Jonathan Colman 12:34
All right. And it's like, you know, not like, not that there's royalties for anyone with our corrupt structures as they are. But you know, it's not I'm getting the payment that I do. And then I, I try to find more work. So I can, you know, keep creating and keep living.
Connor Heine 12:49
Yeah. I feel like that's a very common story. You hear session players, like, they'll hear a song and they'll be like, Oh, yeah, I think that's me playing like two years. I think it is. I don't know. It could be someone else. Yeah. I hear that a lot from session players. Yeah, so that's how me and john met john. Why don't you Why don't you take us back a little. even further, even further. Yeah. to maybe maybe like coming out of high school going into college. Which you go to college again?
Jonathan Colman 13:18
Oh, great. Great. Oh, let's start even further back and let's go to the womb. Yeah, let's go to the womb. All right. So let's go for you. Um, no. All right. So my first real like music that flipped my lid was rap. And Weird Al Yankovic says Amish paradise had a lot to do with it.
Zach McHale 13:50
Like we're about to go right into NWA or like the game or something like so weird out the original round.
Jonathan Colman 13:57
But wait, so then oh, gee. Then I checked out cool. Leo's gangster's paradise, and then I checked out. Okay, J and J la Sol and Wu Tang Klaus. You
Connor Heine 14:07
got a weird I started parodies. Yeah, I started Yeah, I started
Jonathan Colman 14:10
with parodies. Which makes sense because as a songwriter, I'm parody or Yeah, I
Connor Heine 14:15
was gonna say like, your whole being is kind of a parody.
Jonathan Colman 14:20
Many would agree. Agree. And so and then I like got into rap rock. Yeah. Also, there was a lot of breakdancing and stuff and also doing my own wrapping
Connor Heine 14:31
parachute pants that
Jonathan Colman 14:33
I had UFO pants I did. They went they carried into high school. This is still grad school. So then rap rock who
Zach McHale 14:39
are a couple artists.
Jonathan Colman 14:41
It's limp biscuit. Or it's pod it's and then there was Insane Clown Posse was in there as well.
Connor Heine 14:48
Okay, we saw that
Jonathan Colman 14:50
piggyback i like i like guitars, I like basis. I didn't really know the difference. And then I was like into 311. And then I was like in The tool and you know, getting deeper into rock and stuff. And Around this time, I had started high school and before High School, there was a flyer sent to all the parents. And it was like the musical this year is the Wizard of Oz. We're holding auditions before the school year starts. So my father saw this as like, Hey, you can do the robot. Maybe you can be the Tin Man, you should audition for this. It could be a great way to meet people before you start start school. And I was like going to a game you know, I'm just like some fucking asshole teenager kid, as we all are. And I go, I do the tin man. They like the way I move so much. They're like, you know what? You're going to be the Scarecrow. Which, if you're unfamiliar, is the male lead? Yeah. Wizard of Oz.
Unknown Speaker 15:47
Jonathan Colman 15:48
He's the first companion she finds.
Unknown Speaker 15:50
Yeah, no, I
Jonathan Colman 15:51
couldn't sing to skin a toad. And you also don't have a brain, which is an IPS. So they're like, Alright, so not only are you now the lead in a musical as of not even a freshman yet, so all the seniors want to hang me. You can't sing. Okay, so now you're in choir as well. So I'm like, Man, I'm gonna beat up, you know,
Connor Heine 16:10
they put you in quiet or like, get you to be able to sing.
Jonathan Colman 16:13
Yeah. And, you know, these weren't as accepting as the times we are now. So I was like, you know, worried how I'd be perceived. Yeah, now I probably like wouldn't give a shit. You know, I'd be like, oh, like, whatever. This is what I'm doing. But uh, I was nervous about it. And I was on my way to choir one day, and I heard it for the first time that I can recall, an electric bass through an AMP coming from the band room, and I ran to the sound. And my friend Carrie Genovese, he was there playing his might have been like American jazz bass. And I was like, show me how to do some demand. And he showed me how to play brains to not the detuned version because it is any flat tuning. But uh, I learned brains too. I ran home mom and dad I want to be a bass player. And they're like, what's, what's the base?
Unknown Speaker 17:02
So they got a
Jonathan Colman 17:03
scarecrow. That was Christmas the year 2000. So this year, we'll mark 20 years of being a musician.
Zach McHale 17:09
Dang. So I guess from their question, what's the base? I guess the your family's not too musically inclined.
Jonathan Colman 17:15
I'm the only musician on any side of my family. So they got out there's a mixture of a pity and all snapped but you know, I've had so much support from my family so I truly am joking. It's not like I've just been out here in the wild sleeping in trees. But
Connor Heine 17:36
did you get into like high school jazz band? Well,
Jonathan Colman 17:39
I there was already a great guy
Unknown Speaker 17:41
Jonathan Colman 17:42
Yeah. Add leaf and leaf was crushing jazz band. And so I did concert band I was and then I was in a guitar ensemble as well we did a great rendition of stings are the police's every breath you do this is all high school. I feel like ours is
Connor Heine 17:58
all Yeah, there are a school had like a very good music program but I don't remember being like ensembles
Jonathan Colman 18:07
Theatre Guild I was Vice President of Student Council I was insanely involved in high school it was a great four year and and scarecrow I did
Unknown Speaker 18:17
great. And then I
Jonathan Colman 18:18
was in musicals in leading capacities for the next four years. Wow. Okay,
Zach McHale 18:23
so his musical and like the concert band, yeah, concert bands, guitar ensemble,
Jonathan Colman 18:29
I started a band with friends in my hometown and we were so I haven't mentioned something here about this high school development is that at a certain point, Paul we sophomore year of high school one year into playing bass, my dear friend Jay Conoco got me into the band fish. Now at this time I would say fish sucks to rules right? And but he showed me a fish song It was ghost off of story of a ghost changing. It has some really really groovy slap bass stuff which I love slap bass. I like to Primus I, like I said corn and all the rap rock stuff and a lot of slap bass and it's 311. And so I became obsessed with fish, and they weren't even doing anything at this time. They were on hiatus number one is watching bittersweet motel I'm getting all the bootlegs I'm listening to the studio albums downloading whatever I can off of Napster exam and limewire. And then somewhere I think my junior year, they were like, we're coming back. We're putting out an album roundworm.
Connor Heine 19:29
What year was it
Jonathan Colman 19:31
2003 to the playing the spectrum. And I was like, excuse me, so I got tickets to me and my friend Monday who Connor knows I do. And he was just he was deeper into rap. He liked clips and fabulous and you know, anything that was 2003 reps centric and cool. He liked so me Monday went to fish and it blew our frickin mind. And I never recovered. They opened the door For me to funk music, to jazz to classical music to improvisation of all kinds, and I remain forever a student and grateful for those four musicians that are my towering biggest influence of all.
Connor Heine 20:13
Yeah, I would say going to a fish shows, I've been to a lot of big rock shows, and there's nothing like a fish out
Jonathan Colman 20:20
there and I and I then set out to then take as many of my friends who were not into rock music or jam music to see fish. I showed them a good time on the parking lot. I steered them into the venue. And I think they continue to enjoy fish. Yeah,
Zach McHale 20:35
well, depending on how would you say 100% hit rate there or what?
Jonathan Colman 20:39
Yeah, I haven't done anybody, you know, hop off the wagon. So
Connor Heine 20:44
getting them into the venue and out of the parking lot. It's kind of an ordeal to depending on how early you get to the lot.
Jonathan Colman 20:50
It's true. It's true. But so fish was huge. And at that point, I had no direction. Besides, I wanted to play music and being a band and my parents were like, you must go to college. Right. So my dad, you know, to put it in straight up terms held my hand through the entire process of applying, getting auditioning material together.
Connor Heine 21:09
How did you feel about college at that point?
Unknown Speaker 21:12
Unknown Speaker 21:12
Yeah. ambivalent? Yeah.
Jonathan Colman 21:14
I didn't know if that was what I wanted to do. I wanted to just focus on the band I was in and I figured I could take lessons and still get good at bass. And they were like, no, like we you know, before we had you, we were saving to send you to college. So we're gonna send you to college. So they did. so grateful. I auditioned. We went to Berkeley, which really blew me away with their presentation. It literally they were like, Hey, we're Berkeley. And before we say anything, here's Esperanza Spalding, a student here and her trio. And they're going to play for 30 minutes. Oh, and they just crushed. You know, all of them, you know, stars now, especially her. And I was like, I want to go here and my dad was like, there's no campus. You're not going to the city school. So I auditioned at the University of Hartford heart school in Connecticut. They were awesome, very encouraging, telling me I could do it. And then I went to Duquesne, they were also like, you have potential, but we'd like you to re audition after you had some time to practice reading, sight singing, and some of these other credentials. So once again, kind of like the bend story. I wasn't depressed. Well, maybe I was. But I was also
Unknown Speaker 22:28
Jonathan Colman 22:30
And I got my shit together. I went back and audition. They were like, yeah, we like it. And we're gonna give you money to go here. So and my dad and I were like, so I got a scholarship. I, you know, passed the trial. And I went to Duquesne University for four years, and I got a BA in jazz performance. And I learned so much in those four years.
Zach McHale 22:55
Yeah, what do you say, looking back on that, that you're glad that you went to college to get that, or? Absolutely, I
Jonathan Colman 23:01
also wish I could go back and have some conversations with myself about partying, and how to do less of it than I did a I did a, I was a performance major. So I had all the time in the world to practice. And I put in as many eight and 10 hour days as a music student will. But I also didn't, too, and I had a lot of free time to screw around and hang out with people who weren't having a discipline like that. And I really wish I did music technology, because even now, I'm still learning little dumb things that Connor knows. And everybody I work with knows because they did music technology. So my advice to anybody listening to this that's thinking about studying music, and they're just like, I just want to be a player, right?
Connor Heine 23:51
It's not enough. I feel like those days are over. It's not enough just because of how excessively accessible technology is to everyone. Like I feel like musicians are just expected to know how to record themselves and get a good recording, wherever they are.
Zach McHale 24:06
That's what I was going to ask what is what is the umbrella of music technology? So that's like recording on yourself.
Jonathan Colman 24:13
The days of like, you know, demigods like Jimmy Page and Hendrix and stuff like that are over. Yeah. And in a way, it's more like the people who are rising are the ones who are technically savvy. I mean, like, look at Jacob Collier. Look at Adam Neely and the YouTube and Twitch and tik tok and all these different avenues like and that's just on your phone, right? You got to be able to whip something up in whatever DAW you use, you got to be able to make a company video to go along with it. You got to be able to market and promote it correctly. So I would tell anybody that you know, you will practice no matter what the hell your major is. So why not do music tech.
Connor Heine 24:56
And I feel I feel like when I went to you arts, I would come across Either players or singers who were really good, like amazing, but like didn't know how to use, like their own equipment, like, didn't understand like anything about signal chains, or you know, or gain or anything like that. And singers didn't know how to sing into mics. And it's just like, you can be the best player and the most, you know, the greatest singer, but like, if you don't know how to get it across to people, like you, no one's ever gonna hear you. And if they do hear you're you're not gonna sound good. I couldn't tell you how many singers didn't know how to sing into a microphone. That's wild, we're holding it so far away, like weren't seeing directly into it. And it's just like, Oh, I can't I can't do anything about that. You know, from a technical standpoint, you just have to know how to do that.
Zach McHale 25:44
Yeah, I feel like with a lot of like entertainment industries, it used to be like, it's all about getting discovered getting found by somebody big who can bring you to that next step. And now it seems like just building your own brand, having your own thing to kind of slowly just build up over time. And you can kind of build your own niche following. Yeah. Yeah,
Jonathan Colman 26:07
it's true. And that's what I'm trying to do right now. I mean, I'm not trying to cater to anything. As far as my presence online. Besides the things that I like, which are the alien versus predator fit franchise, I'm sick bases and sit guitar effects. And then, you know, my family wishes my fiance and really the only people I see are her and my brother in law and sister in law, their nephew and my sister. Yeah. So you know, I'm keeping it tight and, you know, playing with the algorithms, and it's just it's a very unique time. And and you guys really set it. Yeah.
Connor Heine 26:48
So after college, what was your thinking? You have you have a degree in what was your degree in
Jonathan Colman 26:57
bachelors in jazz performance, which I like to say I use my degree all the time. Yeah. I mean, I've learned to just harp on Duquesne for a second. What a frickin great school.
Connor Heine 27:07
Yeah. I've always heard good things about that school.
Jonathan Colman 27:09
I had incredible musicianship teachers, Eli tomorrow, David Cutler. Jessica wiskus. Tomorrow was a he could play Bohemian Rhapsody on a piano and do like, all the parts. That's what you can do at the end of the year for everyone. Like it wasn't like just playing the piano part of Bohemian Rhapsody. Yeah, he was doing an arrangement of the entire piece.
Connor Heine 27:35
Like all the harmonies and everything.
Jonathan Colman 27:36
Yeah, like, just got one piano? Yeah, it's two hands. It was fucking insane. But he taught me how to hear. Yeah, he, you know, he was like, Listen, you have strong relative pitch, but you have no idea what you're doing with it. And so they told us about this thing called moveable dough, which is part and parcel 100% why I can figure out songs or tell what key something's in. And then that went up even further my sophomore year with this guy, David Cutler, who started talking to us about improvisation and how to apply all this ear training to actually writing and playing. And I had great jazz teachers, Mike tomarrow, was an incredible arranger and combo conductor and teacher Sean Jones was in he's a world class, trumpet player, improviser. I was just first independent study basis. And we made a deal. All I wanted to do was learn how to solo and all he wanted to do was have me transcribe great upright bass players, which I started playing upright in college. So I'm like, you know, alright, if you show me how to play over SOS chords, then we'll also do this ray brown transcription. And I just had incredible teachers. And when I was there, I met some guys who dropped out to form a band. And their band was called 28. North, it was the name of a road in Pittsburgh. And you met the no air at some part of me. And you, where'd you meet them? At Duquesne. They were there. And then they dropped out to focus on the band, which I loved.
Connor Heine 29:11
Before you get into the 20, North thing, I think you hit on something really, really important that I haven't heard a lot of people yet talk about on this podcast is how important your professors were to you. Because, I mean, I went to York, and I had some great professors, but not everyone. It sounds like you had you know, a lot that you looked up to and were very successful in their own right. Which I feel like plays a big part in that. When you went to Penn State. Did you have any professors like that? I feel like I didn't go to a big college but like, I feel like if you went to like a Penn State or an Ohio State of big university, there would be very successful professors there but
Zach McHale 29:47
right, so I met Jonathan so I went to school as a finance major and then I switched income into like a production, side post college. So I think there's a difference of me not really enjoying the majors. To write, and so you know, if you're all into finance and want to understand Wall Street and like, you look up to your professor, like, you're gonna want to kind of pursue that guy. But yeah, you're also sitting in, you know, some of them are massive, like 300 person halls and stuff, it's like, unless you go out of your way to form, you know, close connection or like a mentorship with your professor, you're just not going to have that. So one of it's kind of on you to form that, but also, it's on the professor to to make themselves accessible to do that, right. So I think my situation might not totally apply, because I wasn't as interested in me as music,
Connor Heine 30:33
I was really was really into my major. And still I felt like, and I don't, you know, I'm not throwing any shade at you or anything, but like, there was out of, you know, the, whatever 12 professors I probably had there, you know, maybe a little bit more, there was like three or four, that I felt were like, these guys are like heavy hitters, they know what they're doing. They're not just teaching, they're also, you know, very successful in their own right. which I feel like is very important, and something that you might not realize going into college, how important that is, and you might not even realize during college, because you might not have it. So it sounds like you're pretty lucky there, john, that you have these personal reasons. Yeah, I
Jonathan Colman 31:12
got a shout out like the most important one, Jeff mango, and my four year bass professor who taught me how to have good technique, which now I get paid to teach people to do. Yeah. And he dealt with me being opinionated and aloof and immature and guided me. And, you know, he knew what I did in practice, and was trying to just talk and be off topic. And he never gave me a hard time. And I learned really how to be a good teacher from him and his patience. And he made me a better bass player. 100% You know, so much love to Jeff and I actually met people here to Philly who studied with him. He also taught at Pitt. So it's funny roller didn't go through this book. Did you do some manual one? And I'm like, Yeah, I got him to teach me I we worked through slap it, which is like a slap based Bible. And they're like, he
Zach McHale 32:05
would teach you slap it. Yeah. And that's gonna be key to giving you the confidence to to keep pursuing what you're doing when you have somebody kind of who's patient with you, and understands you and will kind of cater things to you a little bit, but also pull you in a direction that he thinks you should be good.
Jonathan Colman 32:21
Yeah. And like, you know, I was going to see music all the time. So I thought we would talk about who I saw and what I liked and didn't like, and he was just a really, really good educator. Yeah, I think I will say that college was an interesting time. Because, you know, it's like, you spend so much time like being a kid in your life. And then you start to realize that every adult that you've ever known has had this part of them that is still that kid that you're feeling like you are Yeah. And they're just people. They're shitting they're pissing they're they're eating, they're having lives, they have rents, they have wives. And you know, it's something my parents have said to me, too, is like, they think one of their keys to success as parents and people isn't they've never forgotten what it was like to be young. Right?
Zach McHale 33:06
Yeah, that's important. That was one of the biggest things I learned when I started going through college was like, I remember when my babysitter came back one time when he was like, whatever, 26. And I was like, Oh, he's an adult now. Like, he has it all set. And we'll find out later like it at a lot of problems and stuff going on. And it was just like, I think I just thought you just pop out of college. And you're just like, boop, yeah,
Connor Heine 33:27
we're an adult.
Unknown Speaker 33:29
Connor Heine 33:30
Yeah, I think I think the point I was I was trying to hit home is, you know, maybe maybe people don't get that in college. Maybe they realized later that, you know, something in that vein is like surrounding yourself with people who are going to push you and who, like surrounding yourself with people who are. I can't think of the word, you're not
Unknown Speaker 33:51
taking a second, take a
Connor Heine 33:52
second, like surrounding yourself with ambitious people and people who, you know, are very taking their careers. Seriously. I feel like that's in the same vein as like, what I was trying to hit home with the professor thing, because if you see that, like with your own eyes, like I think it motivates you and it goes, Oh, look, this person's doing it.
Zach McHale 34:12
I can see more accessible and more possible around people. Yeah. And being closely especially like a lot of people don't get that.
Jonathan Colman 34:20
Pat Metheny said, you know, if you're not the worst guy in your band, then find a new band.
Connor Heine 34:26
Yeah. That's a good point. Yeah. Yeah. Very good point.
Jonathan Colman 34:30
All right. So there's something to that and I agree, and one of my secrets to was the first two years of college my roommate was in like physical therapy and Health Sciences. So when I got back from nine hours of, you know, being in a practice room, and then they gave you a massage, no more. No. They, they weren't talking to me about music. Yeah,
Unknown Speaker 34:57
Jonathan Colman 34:58
That's new. And it makes What I was really I was like, Oh my God, thank God. Yeah, I'm not doing what he's doing. he in turn was like, Oh my God, thank God I'm not doing music seems impossible, right? So we kind of like, it was great, like right away when we met freshman year we were fast friends and we live together. You know, two years and it's funny. Our whole floor was so tight that sophomore year we petitioned to, can we just move the entire floor to the next building? layout? And they left us Oh, wow. So that's all the same room is
Unknown Speaker 35:35
Unknown Speaker 35:35
So the next day?
Connor Heine 35:37
How would you guys pull that? And then we like we had it sweet with Ra. So we got away with murder. And it wasn't the same ra to like, we also want our ra because
Jonathan Colman 35:47
no no different All right, different Ra. But uh, you know, my ra is we're cool. Thanks for being lenient. Guys. And, and then we
Zach McHale 36:02
finally have been waiting for him to come on.
Jonathan Colman 36:04
Chris, Chris and Matt. last names are escaping me, but really good guys. Yeah,
Zach McHale 36:09
Chris was the only one who messages, Chris PAL
Jonathan Colman 36:11
and Matt something. Um, but uh, I'm sure McIntyre I don't know. But uh, we then after that, I was living with musicians and houses and you know, and then I send my focus went, like, a little more scattered because I had to get to campus. And I was able to screw off a little bit more. But you know, that was part of the learning curve. So
Connor Heine 36:32
yeah, and definitely important to have friends that aren't in your, like, your, your career. I feel like, you know what, I mean, I was gonna say that, because I feel like if you want something else to talk about, at some point, you know what I mean? Like I can, as much as I love music, and I love everything about music. If I just talk about it for 24 hours a day, I think I would go insane and wouldn't like music anymore.
Jonathan Colman 36:52
Yeah, yeah. It's like, nice. Like, I don't know. It's like, you know, I, my family is a good example. Because they're supportive of me. And they like, Listen to me, but also they're, like, you know, not wildly interested in the nuts and bolts of what I do. So, you know, we get to, like, kind of, like, get to the care about what they're up to. And so many of my friends are in music in the arts. So the ones that aren't I'm like, so intrigued and proud of and, and it's like, you know, they might think their job is so boring to me. But I'm like, Oh, my God to Cuba. He's like a sick job. You get health insurance? I'm like, yeah,
Unknown Speaker 37:31
Zach McHale 37:32
and like you were saying, with your roommate, who is in a, you know, that health major, I guess? Yeah, there's got to be some kind of reassurance and knowing that that was definitely not something you wanted to do so can kind of erase the sort of doubt from your mind of thinking like, oh, like, should I be doing this? Because I think with going into a music career, I mean, at some points, especially when you have like moments,
Connor Heine 37:54
entertainment, kind of, right.
Zach McHale 37:56
It's just like, it seems like it's a bigger risk. Yeah. In sometimes I would think you have to have doubts. So kind of having that reassurance of, well, this isn't bad. You know, I don't want to do that. So I must be on the right path here.
Connor Heine 38:09
Yeah. There's a good moments of clarity for sure. Alright, so you graduate college and the losers are losers that didn't graduate college, you
Jonathan Colman 38:20
guys 28 north. Let me talk more about 20. Okay, so, at the time, the band was Mike Linder on guitar and vocals, Eric Brewer on lead guitar. Alex Stanton on guitar. I notice I haven't said bass. I think they all played bass. Did you switch songs, right? And this guy Tyler bond who drummed and sang, and we went and saw them at a bar, and they were so good. I mean, they had been living together and practicing and only doing their band. And all of us, you know, I had a band died, like maybe two, two and a half bands in college. And, you know, we were all college students, though, too. We weren't as focused as they were. And it showed, yeah, like we they just fucking rocked, and it was great. And they, somebody laughs and they were interested in like me being involved. And I was auditioning, if you will, and learned a bunch of tunes and started playing shows, like while I was a student, and then by the time I graduated, the day of my graduation is so contentious for my family, because I didn't even go to the luncheon thing and say bye to any of my professors. I didn't even ride back to Philadelphia with my parents. I hopped in the van with the band, and we drove to Philly to play the TLA
Unknown Speaker 39:37
that night, out of a movie. The day
Jonathan Colman 39:40
I graduated college, and so my parents like yeah,
Connor Heine 39:43
we like flipping everyone off.
Jonathan Colman 39:46
So I was pissed at them because they were like, being a little like, we gotta go I'm like, I'm just graduating college over here, like give me fucking a half hour. So you know, I guess I don't need to hold on to that, but I was pissed in the moment. But we went and we rocked and everybody came out. And it was so fun. And it was exactly what I wanted to do. And it was beautiful.
Connor Heine 40:07
And we was at your first gig with him.
Jonathan Colman 40:10
No, I had done plenty of gigs at that point. And so I am, we did that gig, I moved into the band house and there was also a band business, one of the members, parents, they own a school bus company. So we all drove nine passenger vans. We drove kids to school, and we all had our own nine passenger van parked in a horseshoe, a small
Connor Heine 40:35
little house a movie, there should be at least a sitcom at the very least.
Jonathan Colman 40:39
And we would all drive our kids to school, come home, rehearse,
Connor Heine 40:43
go, get our kids up, bring them home,
Jonathan Colman 40:45
come home, rehearse, and then we would go see your girlfriends or girlfriends would come over, and then we would tour and anytime we were touring longer than we needed to we got subs for the bus gigs. And we fuckin grew the band hard. That's awesome. And they're still like inseparable. Deep friends of mine. You know, we went through so much together and their members coming and going. And eventually, we landed up on the west coast, we moved to LA, and we had a manager you guys toured all over the country. At that point we played we played like everywhere, but the Dakotas and maybe Wisconsin. And and we were hitting it hard man, we had great opening gigs, too many to even begin to recall. And we moved to LA and we were doing awesome and crushing the strip and making good relationships. And my downfall was definitely like, you know, recreation. I was having way too much fun. And whenever they all work, we were all just kind of out there living in a cramped quarters, cabin fever and no personal space, really. And it was good. And it was bad. But ultimately ended up being kind of bad for my mental health. And I was there for too long. And so I had to balance
Connor Heine 41:56
living in the moment too much. And
Jonathan Colman 41:57
yeah, and they were they were understanding and I went back home and I was like, What the hell am I going to do now?
Zach McHale 42:08
I'm sure you had those, like, thoughts start creeping in when you're over on the west coast, because what was the day like when you actually decided like, I need to go home? Like it's it's time. harrowing, hard.
Connor Heine 42:19
I didn't know if it was the right call at all. Yeah, because you were pretty successful. Right? Right. Yeah, things are going great. I mean, like,
Jonathan Colman 42:27
if I wasn't going great,
Connor Heine 42:28
bro. That's what I had to. Like, you're you're kind of living your dream, right. I mean, you were in LA. You know, I was living my dream. Yeah. And that's it. I feel like that's such a hard thing to come to terms with. Like, I'm living my dream. But my dream is not something good for me right now.
Zach McHale 42:43
Right? This isn't sustainable. Yeah.
Jonathan Colman 42:45
Wow. Dude, are you writing your next song? Like what the hell that was beautiful. It sucked, man. It was very devastating. It was hard. And it was long process of they were understanding but also it was a rift to you know, like, I had left the band of brothers and, and I was home and I didn't know my identity outside of that Wolf Pack. Yeah. So I was literally just like watering the plants at my parents house and watching HBO for like, months. Yeah. Yeah. And I didn't even have all my gear like I left. You left quickly. So I, you know, they were gracious to send some of the back. And but I it was, it was a tough time. It was a dark time for me. Yeah. And so the light that brought me back was becoming a lunch lady at a vocational Technical High School where my mother worked.
Connor Heine 43:41
So that that was one that was going to be one of my questions. What made you chose that? I guess, because your mom worked there. She was like, Listen,
Jonathan Colman 43:47
I'm seeing a job and and you suck. You You need to work. That's going to be a start, then we're going to get you a gym membership. Yeah. And so I did the lunch lady gig, another one of my neighbors, Ingrid Schmidt, a freaking saint among women and men. She was the head lunch lady. And she showed me how to do everything. I didn't know how to cut it tomato.
Connor Heine 44:12
And she, what a useful skill.
Jonathan Colman 44:17
And so I, I did that gig. So I would go in and I would be a lunch lady. And then I would go home and I would be more depressed. And then I would go in and know as a lunch lady. And eventually I started going to the gym afterwards. And then slowly, things would happen. I had friends who knew I was around and they wanted me to be involved in a music thing they were doing my friend, Luke O'Brien, who's a creative guy. He started involving me in projects he was doing and I then I started some start to hang in manioc and I was playing the grade. I was meeting people at Dawson and it was all those two places for a while so shout out to scooter shout out great spots. So is so sorry,
Zach McHale 45:01
I was just gonna say so pulling yourself out of that rut would, would you say it was any of those things individually like, you know, starting to get working again and just get moving or working out and kind of moving your body or getting back involved in the community? Was it just a combination of all three of those things that it was all of them it
Jonathan Colman 45:18
was starting, you're starting to regain my confidence in my abilities. And also at this time, I was like, you know, like, I want to do more music. I don't want to be a lunch lady forever. Like, you know, I did have an aptitude for relating to the kids. Also, it's
Zach McHale 45:33
hilarious that you call yourself a lunch lady.
Jonathan Colman 45:35
I have a I have an apron that says lunch lady man. When they had like, Connor seen it. When they were printing, they were like, what do you want on your apron? And all the kids called me lunch lady? And I haven't had like two gratingly
Unknown Speaker 45:48
Jonathan Colman 45:50
No, just like it was who I am. Yeah, I have a tattoo that says listen on my forearm, it's a tribute to a late friend who got me, you know, into music. His name is Jesse Chu. And it was like kind of put there to be a reminder myself to like, stop being so frenetic and listen for a second. And then I'll be like, is that your kid's name? And I, you know, I was like a bartender for these kids. Like, some of them, like, didn't say a word. And I just handed them their lemonade and Doritos, and they swipe their card. I knew what they got every day. And that was that. And then other kids were more chatty, and they would be telling me about their life. Or I'd be like, Alright, that kid is clearly under the influence of something. I'm going to tell the guidance counselor on the low so that they can talk to them, right. And then some kids were like, having a bad day. So I'd be like, Oh, come on. You're gonna come wash dishes with me? And we'll talk about it. Yeah, so I really got to like it. I'll tell you what, these days. They were high school. Yeah. So it really helped me become a teacher in a way because I was able to relate to people in a way that was more peer based than me being like a teacher or a counselor.
Unknown Speaker 46:52
Jonathan Colman 46:52
So I mean, I can't take for granted how that gig informs what I'm doing right now.
Connor Heine 46:59
I mean, you're obviously a very, you know, a people's person and very, you know, easy to talk to. He's known as the friendship wizard. By the way, Zack,
Zach McHale 47:07
I saw that as your Twitter handle in Philly.
Jonathan Colman 47:09
Well, Twitter, I think is friendship Wiz because believe it or not, the other one was taking. But
Connor Heine 47:15
Have you always been that way? Or did any of these experience like,
Jonathan Colman 47:19
I have always been this way? My friends have always been the frickin world to me. Yeah. You know, you've always been like, my sister was like, really my first friend. And we're still friends. You know, I love her. She's my she's my sister. She's my only sibling. She's an incredible person, Caitlin Coleman. She is also in Philly. She works at CHOP. She works in the knick user, she's dealing with people like coming out of surgeries and stuff. And she did eight years on a cystic fibrosis floor. Which is insane. Yeah, I mean, these I don't know if you're aware of cystic fibrosis, but it's not a great prognosis. And she was the same man. But so then I had other friends. They're equidistant from me, there was groups of brothers growing up. shops and the kings. And I just wanted to be the, the, the fourth King brother. And, and then they went to different schools so that I met all their friends. And so I was always that kid at my school, which was small that had a huge friend pool from people from other schools. And to this day, I have, like so many people that I really love and care about. And I'm so lucky to have it. So the friendship was
Connor Heine 48:34
their thing. As always, you're very socially confident.
Jonathan Colman 48:38
Yeah, I mean, it's only because I love to have fun with my friends. I mean, what's better than cracking up at something with your friends? Nothing?
Connor Heine 48:49
Absolutely nothing? Yeah. All right. So your lunch lady man?
Jonathan Colman 48:54
Yes, I was doing that. And and then I started teaching. There's this company called Greensleeves music. And a friend of mine, James McLaughlin. Let me know a friend of his this guy, Ben green in West Chester PA was starting a music teaching company. So I, I auditioned for Ben, I went and he made me like kind of sight, read some chord charts and play some piano. Obviously, bass was a thing. And I just started teaching and I had no frickin clue what I was doing. I had all these Beginner Guitar students, I had this one really great guy who'd love Van Halen, and I like wouldn't let him tune his guitar down and I was horrible. You know if I could go back and redo that first year of teaching I would but then eventually he was like you should teach piano to come on take on some beginners.
Connor Heine 49:40
So what were your chops like at that point? Because I mean obviously I know you down you're fantastic. bass player but were you these
Jonathan Colman 49:48
I mean, I think I was good at bass then to him. I had a college degree in it and then the guitar was I could get somebody started but like I wasn't certainly learning Van Halen. I was more making him go through how Leonard books and how And proper technique, right. And I was doing that. And then a certain point, he was like, take on some beginner piano players. So I did. And then they got better. So I would have to get better, right? And then that would spiral. And I was able to take on more piano players and be able to actually chart a course for beginners or how to deal with somebody who already had experience. And I've been doing that I I've lost track of how long it's been, I've been working for green slaves, but I think it's been six years or more. And now I have so many students, guitar, piano, bass, a lot of different skill levels. It's made me better at all the instruments and just better at music in general. And then I teach privately to like, I take tons of private students, and I'm in this very chair, I'm in talking to you guys all week, working with students working on my own stuff. And I never would have imagined that this would be like what my life is like, but I'm super grateful to have the tools to be able to show up for it. Yeah, good
Connor Heine 50:58
thing you got involved with green sleeves six years ago.
Jonathan Colman 51:01
Exactly. It's like, oh, man, that saved my ass. And then also, then it gave me the confidence to be like, you know, I'm going to take on my own students. And, you know, they're not like, what the hell you're teaching other people like they're like, cool. Like, he's, he's a friend of mine, Dan and Lee are friends of mine. And it was funny. I remember a humanizing moment with Ben. Honest, is a great story. Alright, so union transfer is a club in Philly. And I was going to see badescu Schofield Martin wood. And I had tickets for a while I forget how I was going with. And I saw somebody with their hand up, you know, the one finger looking for a ticket and saw that it was my boss and green. I was like, you're at this concert. I was like, I have tickets dude. And I got in line. I eventually saw he got a ticket. It was in line. I was like, cool. And then I'm going to take a piss and I see him ahead of me. And he's talking to some guy and I'm like, holy shit, is that my eighth grade music teacher Craig godsey. Like, played Primus. For us. He He showed us the difference between upright bass and electric bass. We, we watched a Jeff Buckley live VHS in his class.
Connor Heine 52:16
And why do high school teachers always have like, the best names?
Jonathan Colman 52:20
Greg godsey. Right. Listen, he's a great school teacher. And there, I eventually get to talk to them while we're all washing our hands in the bathroom. And I'm like, Hey, man, are you credit? godsey? And he was like, yeah, and he's with my boss.
Unknown Speaker 52:36
Unknown Speaker 52:39
dude, you're living in eighth grade teacher,
Unknown Speaker 52:41
you would skateboard with us in the parking lot at lunch. And he was like, I remember
Unknown Speaker 52:45
you shot like, all
Jonathan Colman 52:48
bent bar. And we're just pile on and back. And we took the show in. And it was a great performance. And, you know, I've seen Craig a bunch over the years. And it's so funny how I went from being a pipsqueak to now we're just peers. Yeah.
Connor Heine 53:03
Yeah, it's funny how that works out. You've, I don't know if you feel the same way. But I feel like, you create these circles. And then you realize that, like, people, you also know have been in the circles that like you have gravitated towards before. Like, you know what I mean? Like, I don't I don't know if it's come across what I'm trying to get, but like the fact that your eighth grade teacher is best friends with your boss, who you also like, and it's cool. You know what I mean? It's the fact that you gravitated towards your boss. And he happens to be best friends with someone who was very influential in your life before that.
Zach McHale 53:39
That seems kind of crazy. Somehow they crossed over there.
Connor Heine 53:41
Right? I feel like that happens a lot. If you're just following you know, the music. So I don't know. I don't know. Yeah, but yeah, I
Jonathan Colman 53:48
mean, just, you know, you're following a path. And then, you know, at a certain point, you all find yourselves in the clearing together. And it's like, oh, you made it, right. Yeah,
Unknown Speaker 53:57
you caught up.
Connor Heine 53:58
That's awesome. Very cool. Um, with your students? Do you have any students that aren't local? Like, are you teaching anyone? Yeah, I
Jonathan Colman 54:07
teach a guy in New Orleans.
Connor Heine 54:11
I feel like that would might be like, a big avenue for online teaching, especially now. Because like,
Jonathan Colman 54:17
Yeah, I like to teach some people who are like in Long Island trying to think not really anything too far away, every now and then it kind of like muscles help or something will want to do a lesson and I'm game for it. And sometimes I don't even ask people where they are. You know, sometimes we just get right into talking about music and there's less of like, Oh, where are you today? So, you know,
Zach McHale 54:45
and how gentle how sighs I know you got a well, I was gonna say How did muscle tough come together once you go Okay, great. So,
Jonathan Colman 54:53
I get home. I'm a lunch lady. I'm doing all that stuff. I rebuild a pedal board. Get I'll get my main x back which was a is not my main Expo and acts of mine. It's a Fender cologne p bass called Gen fantastic instrument built by my friend Mike D'Angelo and I played a show in New York with Luke O'Brien and Co. We played at the Sullivan Hall now closed. And what your say, this is, fuck, man. I'm such a shitty chronologist dude. I don't know. This is before I live in spice house that helps. So we played a show and my friend Ben harden Stein who I went to Duquesne with and who I had two bands with and Duquesne came out to the show. And he was like, you know, kind of to get here. I was like, on a drove. He was like, Well, why don't you stay another day? And stay at my house and play with me in this drummer tomorrow. And so we did we had a fuckin sick jam. So good. We recorded it listening back to it. And then we started a band called chin city which was really influenced by the stylings of this guitarist in New York called Wayne Krantz. So Ben was studying with Wayne and Lonnie, the drummer was studying with Wayne's drummers, and I listened to the music and so I knew the language and we started writing our own tunes. Our first shows that the great and we had a great turnout and we you can find video from the show on Youtube still.
Zach McHale 56:28
And others really have a documented your first show together.
Jonathan Colman 56:32
We were we paid somebody to be there to film it. Yeah. Tom Schaaf snap studios. Notice how I love to just remember a shout out Yeah.
Zach McHale 56:40
And everybody was involved if you if you want to know anybody in your story. Alright, so thanks, Tom. All the characters are very clear in this.
Jonathan Colman 56:49
Alright, so we we we did that show and we played a bunch and we were starting to you know, play other clubs, because that's kind of how I think Philly works for people. If you're not here. It's like play the grape. mean people. Okay. And then maybe you can start playing ball really early. You know, God bless them. And may they may they continue to rock. We've lost some venues that I would tell people to start playing out already, like bourbon and branch has gone gluten cells gone. Yeah. But they're doing that. And so through doing that. Ross Belvoir was aware that I was a guy that was into improvising and had a lot of pedals. And he had the idea he was sick of whatever he was doing, or putting words in his mouth for the story, but he went on to just have a gig where he would just frickin let it rip all night. Just grooves bizarreness, wild times. And he wrote a couple demos for stuff and sent them out to me and a guy named Joe Baldacci who I hadn't met yet I had just been you know at Facebook stocks and most of the go he's he wears hats and we got
Unknown Speaker 57:56
a lot of hats back then I've never seen Joe wear hat
Jonathan Colman 57:58
a lot of hats do check dig back in his profile pics many hats and so we got together at East Side rehearsal space in Manny uncle and owned by Bach who is a man untouched by time if you know what I'm saying. And we rehearse we had a great first rehearsal and I was like, Hey, man, you know I have this pedal that makes my bass sound like a guitar. If you can make your guitar sound like a bass? Yeah, what
Connor Heine 58:28
is the rehearsal? What is muscle toughs first rehearsal like, what it was we
Jonathan Colman 58:32
had, we had a little chord sketches. Yeah, I was really I had met Ross doing a XPN session. So I knew him all right, as
Connor Heine 58:42
a singer songwriter thing.
Jonathan Colman 58:43
Yeah, it was funny. I had just seen fish to like the night before, like two days before. And Ross plugged in all his stuff and was like playing and I'm like a bill for sell john Schofield tray. And he was like, Yeah, I love them all. And I was like, dude, I just saw a fish. And he was like, how about that shocked us and I was like, I love you. I was like, marry me. And so he like took each other's numbers down. And this was, you know, the combination of that. And then he had done a bunch of work with Joe and this band called early ape. And the three of us got together, we worked on Ross's sketches, I had a tune that we could do. And we might have picked a couple covers too. And we were like, Alright, so we had a night booked at time. And I never practiced harder for anything in my life. I was really ready for that night. And we played time and gave a staple. Our significant others were there at the time. And all of them were like, at the end of the night, you should do this again. So we did it again. And we started writing more tunes. And we started learning more covers and we started playing longer jams and our rigs were evolving to facilitate some of our creative vision. And here we are almost, you know, nearing eight years of being a band.
Connor Heine 59:53
Yeah. So awesome. And to and like I said, time became such a staple of
Jonathan Colman 59:58
Yeah, I mean, time Every now and then like you we went from doing it so much to like our higher ups if you will being like listen like you gotta supply and demand maybe you can't just be like playing for free at this club three sets like you want to play the Fillmore, which we got to gotta rents out for. And that was all part that's such a risk to it's like it's so unique because when you're starting out, you like want to play smart all the time to get your name out there. Yeah. And at a certain type as you move forward, you got to play less, so that you can get the things that are more valuable, right. And it's funny because there's a couple bands that are at this time, like, you know, they're seizing this opportunity, and they're playing a line. I'm torn, because I'm just thinking like, yeah, like, that's how you do it. And then I'm also like, this is a pandemic, like they shouldn't be doing that right now. Right? And then I'm like, you know what, I'm not in charge of anybody but myself. So God bless you all. And so, but we stopped playing around as much we started traveling more, we got some management, we got a great booking agent, and then everything has just continued to grow. And we had such a frickin dope summer plans. And you know, and now, we've been blessed to still be creative. We've we've made about 21, virtual little concepts of music that we've filmed and recorded. And we have all put on YouTube. And we're actually putting all of that out whose videos to show. Great. Thank you. It's all Joe's video editing. And we're putting that all out on Spotify, remixed and mastered as a collection. And I can't wait to listen to it. Just put throw that on little one minute songs. Yeah, every one of them you're going to want to go on for longer. So I imagine we will also take some of those songs, those little snippets and turn them into full fledged songs. Yeah, for sure.
Connor Heine 1:01:44
I got to talk to Joe about his his video editing because the quality is so great, like a lot of the effects and the backdrops and stuff is very good. And then we also
Jonathan Colman 1:01:52
have the kind of taking that and have hot ones moment here to tell you what I'm doing. But we also have a like a collaboration with a vocalist. Our first collaboration with the vocalists coming out is an instrumental band. You were instrumental Bizarro funk, future funk fusion party bands. And we have our first vocalists collaboration coming out, you know, professionally recorded, mixed, mastered and all that on January 1, so I won't tell you who it is just yet.
Zach McHale 1:02:23
Awesome. Okay. Oh, man. Looking forward to that though. And that's great. You guys were able to at least, like make a bunch of content that'll just be evergreen, and just kind of keep growing as you guys eventually move back out there and go live events and that stuff will do its own thing.
Jonathan Colman 1:02:37
Like in 2023, like some kids sees us in like Ohio for the first time, right? You're like, oh, like there's so much here to check out.
Unknown Speaker 1:02:46
Jonathan Colman 1:02:48
you know, we were playing a few shows. And you know, some of them I was like, far enough away from everybody that was like, I'm not gonna wear a mask. And we did some cool streams. And then we did some where I was like, I wish I was in a bubble. And then as that started to happen, I was like, I'm done laying out until there's vaccines. Yeah. And that's just my personal choice. And, you know, the guys are aligned with me and that, you know, we all have things to to be safe for.
Connor Heine 1:03:15
Yeah, for sure. Um, I wanted to ask about the Fillmore. I'm sure, obviously, probably your guy's biggest gig as a band. Right.
Unknown Speaker 1:03:24
I want to say that but also, it's
Jonathan Colman 1:03:26
like you could also say, the Capitol theater. Yeah.
Connor Heine 1:03:30
Capitol theater for Lotus, right?
Jonathan Colman 1:03:31
Yeah. And both Lotus you know, I mean, fuck, man. Jesse. I love you. Thank you so much. Gen. Lotus was the first band I saw on college. Oh, and I had gotten their CD nomads from the homegrown music network, if you remember that anyone listening? And we went and we saw it was my parents dropped me Eric Lom and Mike Riley off at Mr. Small's in millvale in Pittsburgh, right off, 28 out out and we, we saw frickin Lotus and they kicked ass and and I saw Lotus so many times throughout college, and you know, really been inspired by them as a band. So to then, not only like, you know, live in the same neighborhood and, you know, be pals with the guys, but to have them give us these opportunities that are just priceless moments that, you know, I'll never forget. And I hope we get to do it again. Yeah, I think we're a nice pairing in a way, you know, we're both instrumental bands and for sure, you know, we're a bit goofier and a little more insane, but I don't think that their audience has been too upset.
Connor Heine 1:04:35
Yeah, I wanted to ask what what do you think playing those bigger venues has done for the band just because, like, I feel like when you're younger and you're starting a band, you're like, Oh my god, I want to play you know, I want to play the Fillmore and I want to play Madison Square Garden and all that type of stuff. What do you think it really did anything for you guys? Do you think it I mean, obviously put you in front of more people than you normally play for but like have you seen Any benefits from it? Yeah, I mean, I know and I know it's hard to sit because I mean, it was less than what it was like less than a year ago. Yeah. But I can say
Jonathan Colman 1:05:10
this much like, you know, there's a legitimacy like legitimising that happens when you do something like that. So that, you know, that same kid in high school who's starting a band, sees that your band is playing the Capitol theater in the Fillmore and they see Oh, there, they've made it, you know,
Connor Heine 1:05:28
Little do they know, you know, what, that's what I was gonna say, like, how, cuz I feel like younger bands, put those things up on a pedestal, and it's like, oh, my God, if we could do that, that that's it, we're, we didn't make it important to have 1000
Jonathan Colman 1:05:39
people that care about your band, right? You can just have 1000 people that give a shit about your band and will like, buy your stuff. That's what you need. Right? Yeah, but uh, but you know, you have to do those bigger things, but they're not an end all be all, you know, I feel like with the cap, I had a lot of energy put towards it. And I wouldn't say I was as grounded in my life at that time as I was when I got to play the Fillmore. But both experiences were very surreal. You know, I, I was like, I'm gonna be so nervous on stage, I just drop. And then you get out there and your hands are shaking a little for the first song. But then like this, you get tapped into the energy of the crowd, and you're giving it and getting it. And before you know it, there's some union guys cramming your pedals in the case and telling you to get the fuck off.
Zach McHale 1:06:26
And what do you say like that? That height? Like, can you feel all the mass of people there? Is it? Does it feel bigger than
Jonathan Colman 1:06:34
regular? Does it I feel smaller, which I love
Connor Heine 1:06:39
is that there's so many people there because, I mean, they were opening bands. So like the first song. A couple people there, you know, a lot of friends in the first row. Yeah. And then about halfway through the set. I was in the back. I just saw like the flood of people. I was like, Oh my God. That's a big airplane.
Jonathan Colman 1:06:54
Yeah, it was. And I remember the moment it was during the show crows everyday. It's a winding road. Yeah, during the jam. I
Connor Heine 1:07:01
love doing covers. They love doing covers of very big pop songs, but making it I mean, they don't have a singer so they do all the melodies on guitar. It's It's awesome. It's
Zach McHale 1:07:11
I gotta see how that sounds with you guys. Yeah.
Jonathan Colman 1:07:14
Well, stay tuned in January 1, if you want to really experience something of that regard. But um, so during that moment, I remember looking at it and seeing the sway of the crowd and I like could barely see Connor anymore and kind of rent sound that night, anyone listening? He rents out for us. And I was just like, oh, shit, we're tapped in. And that's the thing you know, like, the guys and fish. This speaks so much about that about the connection to each other into the audience in the moment. And, you know, being servants and I even when playing at a club like time, I'm of that mind. But when you're playing these bigger rooms, and you really get to be that small, but being of such great service to the moment. I mean, I I could cry right now talking
Unknown Speaker 1:08:00
Jonathan Colman 1:08:02
Yeah, so powerful and so beautiful. And, you know, I learned earlier on in life that you can't chase the high of the gig with booze or pizza or anything afterwards, you'll just you'll throw up because nothing is as good as that moment. So you kind of just have to accept it. And then you know, be present for whatever comes next. But I always like to say next gig best gig. Yeah.
Zach McHale 1:08:28
Is that come down? How's that come down from that you've finished playing the first one.
Connor Heine 1:08:31
I mean, I've never played the I mean, obviously you can answer it better. But me just running sound. It was hard to decompress after that. Yeah. Oh, but I mean, yeah, I ride in that house. There's a
Jonathan Colman 1:08:41
there's certainly a frenetic energy in the air that night. You know, I was aware of and fortunately, I didn't after party I I hung out at the Fillmore until, you know, was time to go and then I just went home. Yeah, so I wasn't out chasing the dragon or anything like that. But it's tough man. And even the next day, it's like, you spend so much energy promoting, practicing thinking about and then the moment of performing and then you have a week of like, I'm just now I'm a teacher. Yeah, right. And that sucks, though. That week sucks. But it's interesting now it's like, I'm only a teacher. And and you know, I'll more often than not, I'm like, Alright, cool. Am I being of service to my students? And am I taking care of myself and if I'm doing those two things, well, that's great. But if there is a little bit of a onwy that occurs after something so big, but now I'd say those are you know, some some of the bigger gigs I've ever done you know, 28 North had some really big stuff too. Like we open for Blues Traveler one time at the House of Blues in Chicago and that was super sold out, like really party but the band afterwards and it's awesome. You know, that was a wild time. And I'd say that I've just gotten more mature, mature and responsible with the high that comes with doing something so high profile and And being able to then realize I need to decompress and not just try to foster that feeling
Zach McHale 1:10:06
right. And keep maintaining it.
Jonathan Colman 1:10:08
Yeah. And so that I can be like, Alright, cool. Let's do some work and like head towards the next one. Yeah,
Connor Heine 1:10:13
they're going back to the Fillmore real quick. There was a you, you kind of mentioned it for a second, there was a cool moment when they were playing that Sheryl Crow song. And more people were flooding in. And you can see, like, most of the audience is like, what's this? I know this song, because like, they play it in different way. And then you know, they've got effects on this. And, and they're playing the melody on guitar. So what is this? What is this? And then, and then they get into the, you know, the course. And everyone knows the course of that song. And everyone's like, Oh, this this, I'm like, everyone gets into it. And I feel like it's such a smart move by you guys. I don't know if you guys have thought about it in this way. But then the song after everyone's super into it, because I feel like they realize, Oh, I got to pay attention a little to figure out what this is, even though the song after is one of your own songs. But they're paying attention. Now. You know what I mean? They're in because they recognize that song. And they're like, I've never heard it like that. That was so cool. These guys. You know, it's such a moment in your guys set when that's
Jonathan Colman 1:11:10
something we learned to do at a time. Yeah. Where the interest was like, we were really being a dance band at the time gig. So like, we'd play borderline by Madonna, and it would be 20 minutes because people will be dancing and we would just be grooving. Yeah, so what has been interesting for us is taking stuff like that, and then playing borderline on the big stage and not making it 20 minutes. Like how can we make this six and still be impactful? Right? Because we are opening? Yeah, yeah. And you really get like, you know,
Connor Heine 1:11:43
it's your time. Yeah. I wanted to ask you about being creative in this time and space now. Because obviously, before the pandemic, you get to play out a lot. And especially with Mazel Tov, it's very, you know, improvisational, so you get that creative flow gets to come out, what are you doing now? I know, you got the tough transmissions and stuff like that, but to be creative on daily basis, like you were before. How's that going?
Jonathan Colman 1:12:12
It's a good question. Um, so I was talking to somebody about this recently, but normally, my life was like, involved with having so many songs in my brain, like in a week's time, like, I'd spend the first part of the week, learning three bands worth of songs to play that weekend without charts. You know, so I was always using my brain to like, memorize all this stuff. And then I would like I would play and sometimes I would practice but a lot of the times I was just learning music and gigging and that was how I was doing it as I was growing, you know, there is growth there. But now without that necessity of song learning. I'm really back in the shed practicing a lot of stuff. working on building my vocabulary. I got a new bass guitar. It's a five string I've been playing for us for about 10 years. But before that, I did have a few five strings so it's nice to be back. And I know I spent a lot of time getting acquainted with that instrument. And I've taken some lessons I took a lesson with Felix Pistorius is Jocko his kid, and, you know, I don't think he even needs to be attached to his dad's names. He's phenomenal. Yes, fantastic musician and really, you know, pleasant guy, and we had a really, really amazing hour that I'm still combing through before I have another lesson with him. And behind me right now I have a marker board with a pile of my objectives and I'll read it to you now. We've got slack improv. There are some slack based concepts I'm working on. We've got voice leading arpeggios, which is a way of connecting shapes on the neck. I have scale number one, which is a chromatic, but still harmonized scale I learned from Felix stories. I've got a Zack lo Presti lick that I feel like I have, I can maybe take that off. There's a diminished like I'm learning there's a whole tone like I'm learning. There's this book called slump Minsky, which is a bunch of abstract musical patterns that Coltrane used. And I have a few patterns of that that I'm getting. There's a couple box sweets that I like to say read through to get warmed up. I'm learning how to tap. There's an Amy Grant song I'm transcribing all the vocal parts from and then there's more and more vocal lick. So I don't get to all of this in a day, but I keep my practice journal about bpms and how long I worked on something and how it went. So I'm really kind of tracking my growth. And it's funny, it's like normally you'd be doing that. And then you'd like,
Connor Heine 1:14:40
go off, showcase it,
Jonathan Colman 1:14:41
you go play that weekend, and and shoehorn all your new licks that you haven't gotten together yet. And you know, I actually did it a few times during the pandemic. I played time once and, you know, I tried to cram it all in there. But now I'm just really getting this unadulterated time to practice. I've written a couple really cool Instrumental stuff, I've gotten better at practicing improvisation. And I and I do have some, like, you know, it's all video and audio, but I do have some stuff that I'm being contracted to do that I'm playing on. So but I'm just not accepting any work in person or even outdoors, I just, I'm over it. I don't like wearing a mask playing music. A big part of my connection to my fellow musicians and my audiences is my smile in my face. And it just, it's not worth it to me to take the risks to, you know, like, I, I, I feel like if I was I just kind of be like grasping at my career. And I don't feel like my career is going anywhere. And I feel like once our country gets his shit together a little bit, that we'll all be back out there touring and playing and getting to be together. And I am not rushing. I miss it so badly. Right. But I'm not rushing. Because I mean, I'm not in control
Unknown Speaker 1:16:03
Zach McHale 1:16:05
And I wanted to ask, How do you feel tracking helps, as opposed to just tracking it in your head or being like, I'm getting better here. How do you feel being able to turn back visually and be like, well, I've spent like, you know, three hours doing it this week. Does that motivate you more? and Jimmy was like my my practice? Sure. With your practice journal. Yeah. Oh, okay. Well, let's,
Unknown Speaker 1:16:26
let's open it up. I
Unknown Speaker 1:16:27
have it right here.
Jonathan Colman 1:16:27
Let's have a look at some recent entries. And then I'll further answer your
Connor Heine 1:16:33
in in your journal. Are you like self criticizing, you
Unknown Speaker 1:16:36
Unknown Speaker 1:16:37
Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely.
Jonathan Colman 1:16:39
So let's, let's find some good self criticism here.
Connor Heine 1:16:43
Find a bad day find a really
Zach McHale 1:16:45
bad day where you suck. Yeah.
Connor Heine 1:16:47
More expletives is better.
Unknown Speaker 1:16:51
Jonathan Colman 1:16:55
Sorry, I was getting a little lazy that week, I want to find something good here. There was a whole week where I was doing everything eyes closed really slow. Yeah. So I have eyes closed written ever. Sweet two shitty fast read through of a voice leading arpeggios trying to clean up barring on the smaller string spacings minor swing trying like hell to record video, and I'm just not ready yet. Gotta slow it down and try when I'm more resilient to doing multiple takes. And then sometimes under voice leading arpeggios I have this is important work. It's good that you're doing it. So I have a little like motivational messages to myself. And then I can go you know, even if I have a couple days where like, life takes over. And like, Polly and I have to run some errands. And we're hanging out with family. And I'm not practicing. When I get back. I can be like, right, this is what I'm working on. What am I going to pick up from?
Connor Heine 1:17:52
Yeah, so you're coming from a place where you find that self dialog? Very important.
Jonathan Colman 1:17:57
Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Because it's like, I'm getting better for me. And through me and with me. So I'd like God to be honest like that.
Connor Heine 1:18:05
Yeah, that's, that's, I mean, not a lot of people can do that. Not a lot of people are, have the capability to have that conversation with themselves.
Jonathan Colman 1:18:14
And well, and here's the thing, too, I spend most of my week telling people to do this. So, um, so at a certain point, I was like, you know, what, dude? Like, shouldn't you be doing that, too? Yeah. And so I am now and I will say that I feel like I'm improving. And when the gates open again, you'll see me out with some new licks,
Connor Heine 1:18:34
here's maybe a big question. And, you know, go into it as much as you want. How? How much do you? I'm trying to think of the word for it. correlate your mental health being good now to your success in your business in your career? Well, because I feel like people who don't you know, people who might not be in the spot that you're in might not be able to have that dialogue you're having with yours? Yeah. Yeah.
Jonathan Colman 1:19:04
I mean, it's, it's kind of beautiful. And whenever I talk, I'm never saying anything without considering that. There's so much despair, and sadness and frustration and just real anxiety and confusion that everyone's going through. And some people don't have the foundation and setup I do to be living the way that I am. You know, and my fiance is also a full time artist. Yeah. And so we both have our little studios in the home. We're both working day and night, and really getting to do what we love while living together. And it's like, That's fucking amazing.
Connor Heine 1:19:47
Yeah, it is.
Jonathan Colman 1:19:48
And you know, some people like I, my all my friends in the restaurant industry, I just like my heartbreaks. Because like, we're not feeling comfortable going to eat outside places. You know, sometimes I'll do like Pick out beer order. But it's like, they're, I feel so bad if you have a lot of compassion for what everyone's going through right now. And I think that if I didn't have these lessons, like if I was, if it was like, if I was just waiting to tour again, yeah, I would be an ass. Yeah, I would be a mess. And if I didn't have, you know, Holly is my best friend, and she is going to be my wife soon. And she is so wise and grounded and inspiring and inspired that having her around, it's like, hard to slip into darkness. If that makes any sense.
Connor Heine 1:20:41
Yeah, for sure, definitely.
Jonathan Colman 1:20:42
Because she is such a ray of light, I could cry, talking, getting all choked up. But, you know, she's amazing to be with. And we motivate each other. And we support each other. And we hear each other out and with our ideas and our creative endeavors, and we give each other space to achieve them. And it's just a really, really great relationship and situation I have.
Connor Heine 1:21:02
Yeah, I feel like it's something that maybe wasn't talked about a lot when we were in high school and colleges
Zach McHale 1:21:08
now. But now it seems to be much more in the conversation.
Connor Heine 1:21:10
Yeah, more. So but probably still not enough. Because I mean, I mean, I know you have counselors at high school and stuff like that, but like, no one actually
Zach McHale 1:21:20
went it no one actually, I wonder if we'll use them now. Maybe,
Connor Heine 1:21:23
maybe they do. But like no one, no one ever told me that you need to be you need to have good mental health and be okay with yourself. If you if you want any of the tools to succeed, like in any other facet of your life. Like it's okay to be sad. Well, yeah. Yeah. Which is, I guess when I say meant, I mean, it's such a large conversation to have, but at the same time, no, but that's part of it. You know, being able to be sad is also you know, very important, but I feel like, I didn't get that in high school or college. No one told me like,
Zach McHale 1:21:57
about your feelings, or Yeah, how to feel. Yeah, no
Unknown Speaker 1:21:59
one told me how to feel. Yeah, but it's true. But actually, though, and
Zach McHale 1:22:03
not how to cope with it, and I sit there with it. And instead, you're kind of blocking it out. And eventually, it can just hit you like,
Connor Heine 1:22:09
I feel like you I feel like you always heard in high school and college, like, you're going to fail. And you need to learn from that, which is very, very important thing, but no one actually taught you how to fail how to like, understand that it is something that's going to happen no matter what. And that you got to be able to analyze it and see and understand what it does to you as a person because it does different things to different people. No one ever said that. Right?
Zach McHale 1:22:34
And how do you push through that?
Connor Heine 1:22:35
How to push through it? Yeah,
Jonathan Colman 1:22:37
it's true. And like, you know, this is no criticism of my parents or anyone's parents, but like, they came from a generation, like, my dad was a fucking marine in Vietnam. And a guy like that. He's still a marine.
Zach McHale 1:22:49
Yeah, right. You know, that pulled his ass through, like, whatever shit life gave him and he didn't have time to be sad. No, and honestly, being sad, can only really hurt you in that situation. And there's, I mean, there would be a reason you'd kind of have to just block that out. Almost
Jonathan Colman 1:23:05
exactly. So like, you know, and he has always given me incredible advice, whether I've taken or not, but you know, I, in a way, my biggest attraction was my enthusiasm and my lack of ability to practice my emotional reactions to it not going well. But I have learned that, you know, like, I've gone to therapy, like I've talked about my feelings, and all of it has really, really helped me to be in touch with myself. So I don't spend too many nights in a row, go into bed with my head, just an absolute, you know, folk fest of negativity. And I meditate. And that's something that I have a lot of time to do now. Like, I mean, I didn't get to before we got together, but often before I start teaching for a day, I'll sit, set a timer for 10 to 20 minutes, and I close my eyes and I put my hands on my, my, my thighs. And I see what's up with my thought. And I try to separate myself from the, the narrator and the writer of the story and really kind of feel my body. And you know, what happens nine times out of 10 I'm not crying. I'm not sad, but my eyes are just leaking water, just leaking trauma and healing and forgiving myself for just existing. Yeah. It's hard to it's like, you know, you think you're supposed to have the psychedelic experience or have this transcendent, elevated moment. No, but it's like, it's just like allowing yourself to breathe and actually being with yourself can really provide a stability in a way that a conversation with therapists would help but also not truly get you all the way there. Yeah.
Connor Heine 1:24:42
Yeah. So I think with this podcast, we're trying we're, you know, moments that we're trying to have is kind of like the moment we're having right now where we discussed something that you know, maybe wasn't discussed to it, like I said, in high school or in college, something you had to figure out on your own. And it sounds like you have One of those moments you know, when you left 28 north and left LA and decided you had to be right with yourself before you could be successful in anything you're doing. So I'm glad I'm glad we got to touch upon that.
Jonathan Colman 1:25:11
Yeah, man, me too. And like I don't ever like that's, that's truly pivotal to my story and like, you know, it's a display of my resilience and determination and stubbornness to remain a freaking musician. Yeah. But um, you know, I wouldn't be here without absolutely tanking devastating and having to start from scratch again. Yeah,
Connor Heine 1:25:33
that Yeah, those those are, those are the moments are trying to get at. So I'm glad you're willing to share that. Thank you. Yeah, yeah.
Unknown Speaker 1:25:41
Jonathan Colman 1:25:43
I love you, you know that.
Zach McHale 1:25:46
Would you have any what what advice would you give yourself when, I guess maybe like, sort of tail into high school when you're actually if you're really starting to push for this band thing, and you decide, alright, I will go to college and do this. Is there any advice you'd give yourself to preface that knowing what you know, now?
Jonathan Colman 1:26:06
Yeah, I would, I would say, a bunch of shit. So let's just Freestyle Don't put all your eggs in one basket. It's not about having one band, it's about being in several bands, it'll make the tide rise for all of them. And yes, there will be some people who want on wavering commitment. And at this young point in your life, I wouldn't recommend that. It's not a great time for it. And like I said, there's so much of that rock and roll dream of the young guys band in high school takes off that I feel like was a cultural specificity that we're like not dealing with in the same way anymore. So I would advise myself that I would give myself relationship advice. And I would say, like, Listen, like, everyone loves to be loved and feel affection, and whether that be physical, and spiritual and mental. But you're still young and developing so much, and I got hurt and hurt people like being in relationships while on this road music path. And I don't want to tell people that it's like, has to be monastic. But I think that there's a way to, like, maybe still experience some of that affection without having it be. So turbo drived. And, you know, really, you know, save some more gas for your endeavors, because I found myself returning to the discipline of music more and more and more and more, and I feel like I was in some relationships before I really was ready to be that, you know, demanded a level of commitment for me that, like, I didn't even know who I was to be committed. You know what I mean? Right? Yeah. So like, that's important. And then like, rest, relaxation, decompression. And, you know, I was raised, and I went to Catholic school, K through college. And, you know, partying was this like, magical elusive thing, and it could be so fun. And I still love to party with my friends, you know, but I would say that I had to find my line for that. And I wish I could have just known that without having hit the wall as hard as I did several times. Right. And, and I feel like a lot of musicians see the celebration of the Woodstock era and the dead and, and anybody from those times and some of the recklessness in the ways they behaved. I bet those same artists would be like, yeah, we probably we don't do that. Now. We wouldn't do that, then. Yeah. Yeah. So I mean, I really like have a, a mainly sober and honest and dedicated path has led me to find the guy that I am today. And it makes me available for all the musical projects I'm involved in. It makes me available as a family member. And it makes me available as a loving partner to my partner, who you know, is my life partner, you know, we're in it for the long haul. And I'm so glad to be able to be here today and say that,
Connor Heine 1:29:10
yeah. You know, I was just thinking as you were talking about that is, you know, a saying we hear a lot is you know, do what you love and love what you do type of thing, but I feel like that's so not maybe not one dimensional. But could you build upon that like cuz I feel like that's not always it like because it sounds like you loved what you were doing when you were in 28 north and touring and being an ally. But it wasn't the best thing for you. Can you maybe elaborate on you know, add something to that saying I love what you do. Do what you love,
Unknown Speaker 1:29:40
love what you do, do what you love.
Unknown Speaker 1:29:47
Zach McHale 1:29:48
pausing, rebooting or maybe better to go off of you're not putting all your eggs into one basket. Yeah.
Jonathan Colman 1:29:54
Yeah, I mean, it's all kind of the same thing. Like I I really wanted something You know, and 20 Dorf was great, and it afforded me incredible opportunities and position. But in and I love the music and I pulled my heart and soul into it. It wasn't exactly the music that really flipped my lid. It wasn't, you know, I liked it. But it wasn't the instrumental improvisational bug that I have. And then with, you know, starting Chen city, we were all right at it. And it got me to the point where Ross and Joe came into this fear. And then we had this incredible synergy that I now I'm truly playing the music that I feel like is the biggest reflection of my musical interests and my musical personality. And it took so long to get there. I'm about 35. And like I said, I've been doing this for 20 years. And so for 13 of them, where it took me 13 years to find the right guys and the right music. Yeah. So you know, having patience is so key. And and it's this unique thing. It's like letting go of your past being present in your moment. And also having a foresight to say that this is not going to be the last thing you do. The band you're in right now is not the last band you're ever going to be in. It's not the last music you're ever going to play. And I think having that perspective now gives me a lot of comfort. Because everything I say yes to it's not this like life and life to finding life affirming choice is just another choice with this life that I am very fortunate to get to lead.
Zach McHale 1:31:36
That's funny that you say that because actually our first guest our buddy Matt said something along the same same lines of just when kind of choosing decisions, like just make one and go with it. But you're not condemned to that by any means for the rest of your life. And I think at least another one those perspectives when you're younger, you might think I choose this career, I choose this job. And then that's my line from there on. Yeah, and yeah, I mean, things change all the time.
Unknown Speaker 1:32:05
Yes, they do.
Jonathan Colman 1:32:09
And we got to roll with the waves. And, you know, if a pandemic has taught us anything, it's that, that that is possible. I mean, when we got back from Costa Rica, I had arranged that I was going to move in with Holly in August. And you know, I had to call an audible and we moved in in April 1. Yeah. And I left an incredible living situation with one of my dear friends and one of them was Connor. And, but that was what the flow was. Yeah. And and and then there was a moment where I had this beautiful opportunity to receive a heirloom wedding ring from Holly's mom. And I knew what I wanted to do with it. And I was going with the flow with that. And you know, we're planning a wedding, still kind of nailing it all down, because there's so much uncertainty. So we're just remaining open, we like to call it the cosmic joke. It's like, are we grasping too much at the day? And it's just trolling us? Yeah. Oh, okay. We need to let go a little bit and go with the flow a little bit. Yeah.
Connor Heine 1:33:12
Yeah. I like that. And, and, you know, going with the flow is so important. How do you how do you go with the flow, but also try to have some foresight, into, you know, what, that's going to lead later?
Jonathan Colman 1:33:23
Well, you know, you have your wants, and you have your needs, and they're informing your decisions, then you have, how it went, then, which also can help you avoid things. And then you just you, you kind of hope and fortunately, I have a great teammate to plan with. So not just making blind decisions. Yeah.
Connor Heine 1:33:42
Yeah, there's a difference between going with the flow and just blindly going through life. Right.
Jonathan Colman 1:33:47
Yeah. Like, you know, like, when you're also
Unknown Speaker 1:33:50
it's like, the,
Connor Heine 1:33:52
I guess it's the flow you've already set up, right. I mean, right. You know, it's like, I have a flow and you're trusting it.
Jonathan Colman 1:33:59
And yeah, Uh huh. And also awareness of, you know, how quickly you can slip into all behavior. And I mean, like, emotional reaction to something like, oh, there's a change in plans. What am I going to just cry on the floor and shit my pants? You know what, years ago? Maybe two years ago, I might have Yeah. But now it's a little more like, okay, let's pause. Okay, this is what the reality is, let's have a moment of just accepting that and then we can think about potential responses to that. So I mean, maybe just growing up maybe like everybody is doing this when they become manager a little bit older. And but I you know, I guess I just as much as I love, like, being social as we've been saying to the pandemic has shown me too that like, I can very much exist without seeing a fucking assault assessment.
Unknown Speaker 1:34:50
Yeah, yeah. Which so
Jonathan Colman 1:34:52
and that also, it's like, solidifies your
Connor Heine 1:34:55
relationship with that person to right part of me and like solidifies your relationship. But that person? Yeah, I mean, we we've, we've been together
Jonathan Colman 1:35:02
every day without fail for what, nine months now, you know. And we had we used to have a lot more separation because she had two shops she would go into and I was touring, rehearsing, hating and driving around to teach. So I will say that we have only just grown closer, isn't at all
Connor Heine 1:35:21
that was the that was the interesting thing when the pandemic happened and everyone was quarantined. It's like, all right, there's going to be a lot of breakups. There's gonna be a lot of marriages, probably, and there's gonna be a lot of babies probably, you know what I mean? Yeah, yeah.
Unknown Speaker 1:35:37
It's what we were before the
Unknown Speaker 1:35:39
marriage. And, you know,
Jonathan Colman 1:35:41
we definitely want to have kids just not at this time, I feel that we have more of a foundation to lay, you know, and that's something we've talked about. And it's fun to even just, like, think about that and be like, wanting to do that, because a younger version of me would tell you, they never wanted children, right. But they would just be lying, because they thought that that's what you had to do to stay on your path. But now I see so many of my peers, and also my heroes and stuff. And they all have families and their happiest shit, because there's so much more than the stage.
Unknown Speaker 1:36:13
Yeah, well, the studio,
Jonathan Colman 1:36:14
you know, that's like, that's just like a 10th of your life.
Connor Heine 1:36:17
Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, that's a good point. Um, do you have anything you anything else you look at? I mean, a question. I wanted to ask that. We haven't asked our guests yet. Sure. Yeah, I got it. I got a clip of one. So yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah, definitely nearing the end here. And maybe we will, maybe we won't even have this in the podcast. But what do you think? What do you think of what we're doing here? What do you think of this type of conversation with people? Because we're trying to have this conversation that we had with you in different, you know, different careers different, you know, different people? Is this something you know, coming out of high school in college coming out of college, that you you'd want to hear a conversation with a person who was in your field having? Yes, yeah.
Jonathan Colman 1:37:00
Yeah, I like what you guys are doing here. And, uh, you know, you could have been doing a podcast about Mack trucks. And I would have said, Yes, because you, but um, it was easy to say up and I feel like I'm uniquely qualified because I haven't just like, been brave. Yeah, I have, I haven't just been kicking ass and and you know, and achieved some level of notoriety or financial success, where I'm just like, chilling. No, it's been a very checkered and twisted path. And I stay on it. And, you know, I've learned so much from every trampas every trial, and, you know,
Connor Heine 1:37:39
I'm here for more. Yeah, no, I think we're trying Yeah. And I think the point of this podcast is, we're trying to point out that that kind of sounds like it's more common than then people who are just, you know, go to college, they have an internship, they get a job with that internship, and then that's their job. And that's it, and they're making, you know, they get raised every couple years, they get a bonus, you know, that doesn't, that doesn't seem like it happens a lot anymore. You know, it doesn't, it doesn't seem like that's the, that's what I was always told in high school in college, like, this is gonna happen in this, you're gonna do this, and you're gonna do this, and then this is this. And that's it. Yeah,
Jonathan Colman 1:38:13
yeah. And if anything, I hope I can motivate people to you know, take their discipline as seriously as it deserves to be taken. And I hope I can let people know that it's okay to fail. And that you will recover, you will, you know, you will bounce back. And that, you know, there is always today to have and, you know, fortunately by been blessed with many tomorrows, and I wish that for everybody as well. cluding you guys. Thank you.
Zach McHale 1:38:43
Yeah, thank you very much, Jonathan. I mean, do you have anything else gone?
Connor Heine 1:38:48
I don't have anything any any last words, john.
Jonathan Colman 1:38:52
Um, muscles off. Muscle tough banned on Instagram and Facebook. Please follow us. Share our videos, share the music we're putting out with your friends. Every little bit of spreading the virus helps. Oh my god. I can't say that, man. That's something too, like going viral is over. Right. Nobody wants to go viral. Yeah, we got to come up with some other word for widespread media. But you know, I love playing music. I love improvising. And that's the place for really, really get to do my thing. And I look forward to getting out there. And in the meantime, if anybody's been listening, and they're curious about lessons, please do reach out. I can make time for people because it's all virtual. And, you know, just may all your days be tranquil.
Connor Heine 1:39:38
Love it. Thanks, john. Thanks for you guys coming on.
Zach McHale 1:39:42
Yeah, thanks a lot. It was really great meeting you, man. Yeah, you too. You
Unknown Speaker 1:39:44
guys have a good rest of your week, right?
Unknown Speaker 1:39:46
Yeah, you too, buddy.
Unknown Speaker 1:39:47
All right later.
Connor Heine 1:39:50
Thanks for listening to another episode of after school program. Check out our website ASP pod comm for show notes, transcripts and follow us on social media at ASP to t. If you like what you've been hearing, make sure you subscribe and listen every Tuesday and tell a friend while you're at it. You can follow john on social media at friendship wizard. He's available for online bass guitar and piano lessons and make sure you give a listen to muscle toughs new release a cover of Sheryl Crow's every day is a winding road. See next week, guys
Jonathan Colman (@friendshipwizard) is the bass guitarist for the futuristic funk band Muscle Tough (@muscletough). They've opened for Lotus at Capital Theatre, played at The Fillmore in their hometown of Philadelphia and performed alongside Jon Fishman, co-founder of the band Phish.
He also teaches private music lessons.