image via instagram.com/delwatergap
We had the absolute pleasure of chatting with Holden Jaffe, known as Del Water Gap, about his inspirations, his previous work, and his upcoming work.
For those who don’t know you, who are you?
H: I’m Holden! I’m a songwriter. I grew up in upstate New York between farms and I moved to Brooklyn anout five years ago. I started a project called Del Water Gap and it’s my baby.
What genre would you describe your music as?
H: I would say it’s songwriter music. I take a lot of inspiration from Randy Newman, Harry Nilsson, Bob Dylan, and Tobias Jesso Jr. I really want my music to be about the song and I really want people to focus on the song.
Who would you say are some of your biggest influences growing up?
H: Musically or in general?
Let’s say musically.
H: Well my first CD was Now [That’s What I Call Music!] 3, and I grew up listening to Bob Dylan, the Beatles, and the Strokes.
Regarding your old hits, how does it feel to have both “In the Yard” and “Hightops” reach over a million streams on spotify?
H: Well, it’s weird since I wasn’t initially obsessed with those two, but I think it’s awesome how people can connect to my music like that and I was really proud they reached a million streams with just my independent marketing.
What are some inspirations behind your old stuff?
H: Well it’s mostly inspired by my own romantic experiences. “In the Yard” I remember I wrote as a joke for my ex-girlfriend, and “Hightops” I remember I wrote with a friend and it’s a sad song. I had the girl’s name in the chorus so I was hesitant about putting it out, I actually tried to get someone else to take it. In general though, I take a lot of inspiration from romance, literature as well.
Is there a song that you are especially proud of?
H: “Love Song for Lady Earth” is one I’m extremely proud of. I was with my mom in South Carolina for a few weeks when I wrote it. I played a lot of guitar, and it also rained a lot. When I finished it, I think it was the first time I realized I had a voice.
You recently signed with Terrible Records, want to explain that a little bit?
H: Yea! So I signed with Terrible Records which is Ethan Silverman and Chris Taylor, who I’ve admired for a while. I think we actually got in contact over [direct message].
Regarding what’s to come, how is your new stuff different from before?
H: It has a different vibe, but the heart is the same. I’d say it’s more guitar-based and more relaxed. My upcoming single is my first song I’ve done alone in a while. Del Water Gap used to be three of us, and I liked the process of working things out together. Now that it isn't dependent I'd say it's less straight-rock.
What do you see for yourself in the future as an artist?
H: I'm definitely excited to be putting songs out with Terrible Records. I would love to tour the West Coast and hopefully Europe. Most of all, I want to grow as an artist. Your music is only as good as the time you put into it so I plan on writing consistently.
Del Water Gap's newest single "Laid Down My Arms" is now out, go give it a listen and fall in love with both the sincerity of the lyrics and the sunshine-rock style of Del Water Gap just like the rest of the world will.