Growing up in my grandfather’s church tuned my ear to the world of music. My quiet observations of my mother’s singing at home and my sister’s choral participation encouraged me to overcome my shy childhood inclinations and delve into a world where I could express myself like no one else. When I write songs, I am reminded of my growth and how the influences surrounding me as a youth ignited me with the spirit to sing.
In high school, there was a female a cappella group, whose presence roused some of my peers into creating a male counterpart in my junior year. Upon its establishment, and after joining, we quickly gained and surpassed the popularity of the girls, harmonizing without written arrangement. My most impacting solo came the following year with “A Song for You,” the arrangement made popular by Donny Hathaway. His lyrics encompass the direction I seek, the romance I convey and the love that pours from me when I create my music:
“…I’ve been so many places
In my life and time
I’ve sung a lot of songs
I’ve made some bad rhymes
I’ve acted out my life on stages
With 10,000 people watching
But we’re alone now
And I’m singing this song to you…”
Attending the University of Virginia was a chapter in my life that influenced even more musical creativity. In Charlottesville, I was described as a charismatic artist and I gained the confidence to define my purpose through my lyrics. My goal became exchanging my reserved tendencies for writing love songs that speak to everyone.
Today I record the words that label me the hopeless romantic. I take real themes and create the sound that has become just Julian. Perhaps one day, I’ll write a song that speaks to you like no other… this is my intention.