Two of a Kind

When Smoke Season's Jason Rosen (former keyboardist of pop group, Honor Society) and Gabrielle Wortman (electro-rock artist) came together, they wanted to create a sound that captured their youthful encounters in the great state of California. With their first release,Signals EP, not only does the group achieve this, but they render a listening experience unique enough to standalone in sound.Smoke Season blends psychedelic folk rock reminiscent of Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeroes, with searing electronic undertones in the vein of The XX. The result is beautiful story-telling that is musically saturated with the Old West, tumbleweeds, and a pioneering youthful spirit. Smoke Season captures the ears, minds, and hearts of listeners of all ages.

R. How would you describe your music/art/entertainment for the public audience if they have never seen your before?
SS. Our music is a blend of psychedelic folk rock infused with electronic elements. We draw from an eclectic palette of sound. My guitar tones form a rich tapestry around Gabrielle's cascading keyboard lines. The combination of these elements from Smoke Season's intricate sound. With the EP we wanted to capture that feeling of living in California. We're both from New York originally, so our experience out here on the western frontier is over casted by a shadow of our former east coast roots.

R. "Smoke Season" means what?
SS. Smoke Season is a period of time defined by that which is evanescent, obscure and without result. The music we create is our reaction to this. Both of us have had our own interactions with the "smoke-and-mirrors" aspect of the music industry that have left a bad taste in our mouths. We've found that process to be more "radio-friendly". Using this as our inspiration, we decided to create music we found was beautiful and that we loved and, hey, if other people did too then that was a beautiful thing. We ended our "Smoke Season' by making the art we want and rejecting the idea of writing the "next pop hit".

R. Who does most of the song writing/art/literature? (discuss the songwriting process in detail).
SS. Songwriting in our band  happens organically and doesn't have a certain formula at all. In fact, Soleil, our first single, came out of a spontaneous late night jam session. We had not set out to write a song at all, instead one was written without us even trying. This set the tone for the writing process making EP. Our songwriting process is extremely fluid. One of us will start with an idea, like a riff, lyrical phase, or chord progression, and then we'll show it to the other and develop the entire song. The combination of our musical influences and backgrounds makes a really unique vibe. We found that we write our songs really quickly because we trust our instincts and use whatever we come up with. This is also why a lot of our songs have unconventional strictures and seems to flow more adventurously than the standard verse-chorus-verse-chorus format. 

R. Gabrielle Wortman directed the music video for the single "Soleil". Tell us a little about this, and where was it filmed?
SS. Gabrielle came up with concept for the music video. We planned every shot and filmed most of the outdoor shots on location at Griffith Park in Los Angeles. We take a hands on approach to every aspect of our career, so being at the helm of our first music video made sense. Jason even edited it, and the final product is a unified vision of what that song is to us. We wanted to use metaphor and symbolism to tell weave an honest love story in today's world. The first symbol we drew heavily on was color. The video starts in black and white, symbolizing the absence of love for the two characters. They are slowly waking up to a  world with love but haven't yet found it. When the color is introduced, the characters have found love. However, in today's world, love stories are never fairy tales and often times people lose the love they find because the world gets in the way. This is why the color drains out by the end of the video. We also used the dream catcher to symbolize another major theme in the plot. We've found that the most beautiful moments in life, like when you're in love, are very dreamlike. The blending of these dreams and reality are captured by the Polaroid's in the dream catcher. The characters were catching life moments that felt like dreams.

R. Your first EP "Signals" is a song about?
SS. Our EP explores many themes. We set out to make each song the name of someone that is important to us and inspired the music. For example, Felix is named after Jason' s grandfather, and Bianco is Gabrielle's family name.

R. What are your up-to-date performance plans/ New releases? Tours? News?
SS. We have a Stagelt performance on Sunday, April 28th at 5pm PST/ 8pm EST. It's our first live webcast show, and we couldn't be more excited. You can expect us to play all the songs off our EP, as well as some brand new ones. Also, we'll be headlining the Troubadour in Los Angeles on Saturday, May 25th as a big album release celebration. All the rickets information is available on our website,

R. What do you both attribute to your "drive as an artist?"
SS. There is an inner urge to create and play music that is formed at an early age. Both myself and Gabrielle posses this flame that burns at our core. We just absolutely love playing music, and the bond we have with these songs and words in spiritual. There really was never any other path for either of us but of an artist, and to create beautiful music. Also you have to be willing to go the extra mile in every endeavor. When one door closes, another one opens. It's all about determination in the music business. 

Last but not Least…

R. If you had to think of a slogan that could leave a positive impact for everyone what would your slogan be?
SS. Just. Keep. Moving. Give your blood, sweat and tears for your art: it's mandatory. In a world filled with mediocrity and cookie cutter artists, it takes major courage to create something original, something unique. It requires the courage to create something revolutionary that the masses will be moved by. But the key is to write to what you think will be commercially viable. Write what comes from the heart. The most powerful art is honest and it often flows in unconventional ways. Break barriers and you'll capture attention. Also, take control of your career instead of expecting others to direct you on how to create, market and grow.

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