His deep love for music has turned his passion into a full-time career. We have all heard it before, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I cannot honestly say I’ve met many that live up to that adage, but Kazonis surely does. From tours across the country, teaching at Broadway Music, hosting open mic nights, and involvement in several band compilations, this individual dedicates his existence to music
His first solo album, Season’s, was released in 2016. Each song on the album represents a “season” of his life and his reflections once that season had ended. The album was made to spread the message of growth, joy, and having a positive outlook given any situation. Season’s was a hit, but little did he know, it wasn’t over just yet.
Following the album release party in April 2016, Nick was approached by fans about the performance of the group. He said, “People kept talking about moments in the show that made them say, “Whoa, what is this?” This made me want to capture that moment.” This unexpected inspiration drove him to capture what people were feeling while listening to the album, transcending Season’s beyond his own emotions.
His songs emulate experiences that are relatable to many. Trials and tribulations of this artists’ life have aided to his spiritual and musical evolution. In life, suffering is inevitable. It is what we do with the experience that makes us who we are. Do we give up? Or, do we accept it and grow? Nicholas chooses to learn from darkness and follow the pathway to the light. He is the prime example that suffering can lead to growth. He has opened up about personal battles he has experienced through his songs, which are up to interpretation for each listener.
“You can feel, see, and hear music. What can I do to give listeners something they can visualize, feel, and hear? I then came up with the concept of making Season’s Live CD & DVD package.”
Q: How did you go about producing this project?
The live album was recorded, mixed, and mastered at Upstate in South Bend. During this fourteen hour process, Kazonis and the band were simultaneously being filmed for the DVD. Quite the project to complete in one day!
Having skill was a must in choosing musicians for this project, but it wasn’t the most crucial factor for Kazonis. It was about their mindset.
Q: Tell us about the process of choosing these musicians.A: The people I’ve chosen were not only for skill, but placement in their lives. I have a 21-year-old guitar player who’s playing with a 60-year-old experienced sax player. It’s about the process of the music and harboring the genuineness of what the album is about. They all understand what the project represents and want to carry that message.
Kazonis handpicked these musicians for spiritual reasons. These men believe in the authenticity of music and how it can potentially help people. They all believe in projecting a positive message. It was important for him to have diversity within the group in order to combine generations of talent.
“I wanted to incorporate the present, past, and future from all different age levels, abilities, and spiritual mindsets. I wanted to capture this at a visual and auditory level. I know what Season’s did for me, and I want to share that with others through this brotherhood.”
In April 2017, Nicholas released Season’s Live. It has a contrasting sound compare to the studio album. Kazonis wanted to give listeners high energy and new expression through a live performance.
Q: What is different about Season’s Live?A: The songs in Season’s Live are the same songs, but expressed differently. I have a full horn section and drum set. It is much more pumped up now. We take these songs and give them a soul vibe.
The live album has a full band. This includes a three-piece horn section with two sax players and one trumpet, keyboard, guitar, bass, drums, and back-up vocals. The energy is undeniable. The combination of the full band really sets apart from the first released album. Listening to the album gives the feel that you’re reliving a live concert.
Q: How was making the DVD?A: It was a great experience. I wanted to give people something different than what artists are doing on the regular. The band on the DVD allowed for the visual aesthetic as well as capturing a community of individuals working towards a common cause. A big part of what I’m trying to accomplish for my audience is to give them something for as many of their senses as possible.
The DVD was equally if not more compelling than the live album. Hearing and watching the musical connection of the band is what’s most memorable. The chemistry and flow of the instrumentals is raw and unforgettable. The DVD showcases the musicians live in their element. It depicts what it would be as if you’re at a live concert, watching an in-action musical performance. The DVD is great for anyone that wants to watch and hear live music without having to attend an actual show. If you can’t make it to one of his live performances, or going out on the town just isn’t your thing, the DVD is the way to go.
Q: What do you want readers to know about the DVD?A: I want people to see the level of energy from the band. I want to show them where the music is going. Here’s a group of people that want to do more with me in the future. I want to show people the diversity of what I do. Most have told me to stick with one label. I don’t fit in a label and I never have. I want to show people that. I want to be transparent and show people I do a lot of different things. I’m Nick Kazonis, that’s my label. I’m me and only me.
This emulates Kazonis’ musical diversity. He can do anything from acoustic, singer-songwriter approach to a full band with soulful sound. His drive for consistent growth, and unwavering individuality showcases his uniqueness. Season’s Live CD & DVD captures the groups’ passion for music and delivers the message of joy through the toughest of times.
Supporting local musicians of Northwest Indiana is the best way to give back. Attending shows, purchasing albums and DVD’s, and giving feedback on social media are great ways to show the appreciation of this music and the effort it takes to give this to the people of our area. The live album, DVD, and merchandise can be bought on his website nicholaskazonismusic.com.