Jeff Forgeron is a Canadian country artist whose music is often described as being “Blue-collar country with an edge”. “Growing up with both Country and Rock influences, it is no surprise to hear the genres authentically come together. The notable heavy drums and distorted rhythmic guitars, mixed with picture-perfect imagery round out Jeff Forgeron’s sound. Forgeron has spent the past few years working on his craft as a songwriter and moulding his unique sound as an artist.” (Forgeron). In 2018, Forgeron released his 5-track EP, “Lookin’ Back”. In the summer of the following year, Forgeron had the opportunity to open for notable country artists, Ray Fulcher (Writer of Luke Combs “When It Rains It Pours”) and CJ Solar (Writer of Jason Aldean’s “I Don’t Drink Anymore”) at Cobourg, Ontario’s 2019 Country Wild Music Festival (Forgeron). Now Forgeron is back with new music; with his Canadian radio-debut single “Raised up on it”, set to be released on February 9th.
Recently I spoke with Forgeron about his upcoming single, songwriting, his music goals moving forward in the new year and more.
Kyla Pearson: Your upcoming single, “Raised up on it”, is being released on February 9th, 2021. What can fans expect from this new single? What was the inspiration behind the song? What was the process that went into making this song?
Jeff Forgeron: With “Raised Up On It”, country fans can expect a fun, rockin’, proud of where you come from small-town anthem. This song is going to be my first release showcasing the style and sound I want to be known for, so I wanted to make sure this single was packed with heavy rockin’ guitars and drums.
The inspiration behind “Raised Up On It” was taking my personal lifestyle and knowing there are plenty more people out there like me. The ones that love being from a small town, being proud of who they are, where they come from, and never being afraid to stand their ground. I took all that into account when I started writing this song. I wanted to have a fun upbeat melody along with a high tempo track and I think we accomplished that perfectly.
KP: Prior to your upcoming single, you released your EP, “Lookin Back”. How does the new single differ from the tracks off the album?
Forgeron: I would say that EP was me starting to transition into the style I felt most comfortable as an artist. Songs like “Lookin’ Back” and “Steal You Away” definitely have elements of where I am at now sound-wise. They have those upbeat tempos, fun guitar sounds, and heavy drums. That EP really helped me get to where I am today as an artist.
KP: You have a sound that leans more towards traditional country, but with a contemporary twist. Who would you say has influenced this stylistic choice?
Forgeron: Honestly, I always try to write something that is true to my life at that moment or something I’ve been through. Growing up I was raised on 90’s country and Rock primarily which really shaped who I am as an artist now. I take the elements of 90’s country with storytelling and try to paint that perfect image, then bring in some of those rock elements with the sound of the music. Mix it all together and you’ve got a true version of myself. As for who has influenced my style, it would be Jason Aldean without a doubt. He’s one of my favourite artists and biggest influences.
KP: In regards to lyrics, do you draw the stories behind your songs mainly from experience or you like to create a fictional story (that still relates to your audience)? What do you think makes a great song, lyrically speaking?
Forgeron: I think just stay true to yourself through the whole process. Write about things you know well and believe in. I find listeners can really relate and buy into what you are playing if they can feel it coming from something truly natural to the artist. That’s always my biggest thing whenever I sit down to write a song. If it isn’t something I have personally been through or do myself in my everyday life then I won’t write it into one of my songs.
KP: If you could collaborate with one artist you look up to, who would it be and why?
Forgeron: Oh that’s an easy one, Jason Aldean haha. One of my biggest inspirations and someone I look up to. From day one of putting on a Jason Aldean record, it always feels natural to me as something I would have loved to write. If I could sit down with him would be a dream. A couple of others would be Alan Jackson and Tim McGraw who I grew up listening to for as long as I remember. That would be really cool as well to sit down with legends like them.
KP: You also run a series called, “Whiskey Wednesday” on YouTube. What is the goal of the series? What inspired the name behind the series and this initiative?
Forgeron: The idea behind the “Whiskey Wednesday” series was to help get my name out there a little more as a songwriter. I wanted to show the fans and the people coming across my profile what kinda songs I had been working on. I also threw in a cover every now and then of a song I really had stuck in my head at the time. The series really slowed down though once I got back to work in the studio, that is something I really want to improve and build on in the future. So fans can expect to see more of that once some of this new music comes out. As far as the name choice, well I’m a big whiskey drinker and it sorta rolled off the tongue nicely so it’s stuck ever since haha.
KP: 2020 was a challenging year for many, and it especially hit the entertainment/music industry harder than most. Looking back on the past year, what would you say is one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced in light of the pandemic? What is one positive lesson/takeaway from last year for you?
Forgeron: One of the biggest challenges for myself as a new name on the country scene was I wasn’t able to get out there in front of people to perform and show them what I’m all about. My original plan was to release this single earlier on and then hit the ground running promoting it and playing shows. Of course, that didn’t happen, but it will at some point so I am not too worried. The one positive thing about this was I was able to sit down and take my time on the songs I wrote and the songs I eventually recorded. I had the freedom to make sure everything was exactly how I wanted it to be without really worrying about a deadline. I think in the long run that will actually benefit me.
KP: Moving forward in 2021, What are your plans for your music? Do you have new music being released aside from your single? What are you most looking forward to?
Forgeron: Aside from the “Raised Up On It” single, I maaaay have a few things up my sleeve musically that I can’t release yet. What I will say though is that I plan on going all-in not taking any shortcuts, so there are things to be excited about for sure! Honestly, I’m excited and nervous to just get some of this music out there for the world to hear. It’s been a few years since I’ve released anything but I’m ready to show the country world what I’m really all about.
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To learn more about Jeff Forgeron and his music, be sure to check out his socials:
Apple Music: https://apple.co/3cHTgUB
Forgeron, Jeff. Interview. Conducted by Kyla Pearson, Jan. 7 2021.
Unknown. “Featured: Canadian country artist Jeff Forgeron”. Photo courtesy of Jeff Forgeron. Accessed Jan. 12 2021.
Unknown. “Official Cover Art for Jeff Forgeron’s upcoming single, “Raised up on it”.” Photo courtesy of Jeff Forgeron. Accessed Jan. 12 2021.