October has been a rollercoaster for me! This weekend, I caught a terrible cold that had me bedridden for a couple of days. I am just coming back “online”, aka back to normal, after spending pretty much four days sleeping and fighting a head cold.
I have meant to write about today’s artist for a while now. This artist has recently released two new songs within the past three months, with the current released about two weeks ago. As a singer-songwriter, Jeremy Hoekstra has a beautiful talent for blending the sounds from different musical genres into his songs.
I had the privilege to review his latest release “We’re Alright”. This song’s message is very relatable to our lives. How so? Find out behind the cut!
The Soothing Melody
When I first listened to the beginning of “We’re Alright”, I felt like I was listening to an updated version of an 80s’ songs that I can’t really put my finger on. Maybe something on the veins of Toto or Genesis’ soft rock songs. The reason why is that of the solid melody line played on a synthesizer keyboard along with the light guitar supporting the melody. Even with the modern instrumentations — like a sampler — added in the song, it just feels soft pop-rock song that harkens back to the 80s.
The ambiance sound of the vocals and the instrumentation is another thing to listen for. How Hoekstra sings is in a soft style that fits the instrumentation perfectly. His style makes listening to the melody soothing and easy to listen to. The sound is also very positive, something that goes hand-in-hand with the lyrics that will be discussed below.
The Meaning Behind the Lyrics
According to his official site, Hoekstra said the following when mentioning the meaning behind the lyrics:
“Whether you’re a student dealing with the pressure of fitting in, whether you’re in your 20’s trying to figure out what to do with your life, whether you’ve got a young family and are desperately trying to keep it all in balance, whether you’re an empty nester discovering who you are again, whether you’re nearing the end of your life and wondering what is beyond; We all long to be told that it’s gonna be alright.”
These lyrics are easily relatable to the listeners as we have faced roadblocks in our lives. Speaking of roadblocks, I was listening to the latest podcast from Boss Girl Creative today that the host talked about her own roadblocks in her business lately. Everyone has them, even I am having a couple of them right now. I have had a hard year in finances this year. I made an error on a tax form a year ago, and I now owe the government back payments. This is money that I don’t have (as I took a pay decrease this year to have vacation time to go home for Christmas). I could find extra work, but it is limited to the field that is listed on my visa (I live in another country, and I am primarily a teacher). I tried to look for part-time work or a better job, but no luck as “more qualified” candidates was hired. Also too, as I learn this week, I cannot work too hard, or my health will falter.
But, as Hoekstra sings about in his latest song, things will get better. I, and even you, have to hold onto that faith that we will get over those roadblocks and maintain the right balance in our lives.
What kind of roadblocks have recently faced and how did you overcome them? What songs or quotes help you overcome barriers? Let me know in the comments below.
You can listen to “We’re Alright” on Jeremy Hoekstra’s official site. You can also find Jeremy Hoekstra on:
About the Artist
Singer-songwriter Jeremy Hoekstra hails from Grand Rapids, Michigan. It is ironic because I went to college in Grand Rapids. We actually went to rival schools – he went to Hope as I went to Calvin. Nevertheless, he has been making music for over ten years. According to the site, Hoekstra “is part of the movement of musicians redefining what it means to be a pop/singer-songwriter, bringing multiple genres of music together to create a unique sound.”
When he is not recording his own music, Jeremy Hoekstra is performing at live shows around town, participating on other artist’s recordings, working as a studio musician, serving as a worship and music director at his church, and working as a producer and songwriter.
Check out his website for new releases or concert dates.