Social Media Sunday: Jakes Gorilla and Jaron Strom

January 20, 2014

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 Jaron Strom

With its short video looping system (3-6 seconds to be precise) it’s hard to imagine the social media app ‘Vine’ as the kind of place you’d be able to spot a furiously impassioned performance or an astonishing piece of musical talent.

But in an age where you’ve got to stop your potential audience from scrolling, perhaps a couple of seconds is the ideal way to hook us in and leave us wanting more?

It certainly worked in the case of young singer/songwriter Jaron Strom (@Jaron Strom). Gracefully strumming his guitar, the young American was thoroughly able to deliver an infectious and deeply emotional snippet of a cover of Anthony Hamilton’s “Cool”. I wanted to know more.

Hailing from North Carolina, Jaron Strom – who cites his musical influences as James Morrison, Jason Mraz and Elvis among others – aspires (in his words) to “do more than just put design on the streets or tunes on the radio. I want to touch and unite people across the world in hopes to change and better it. As a child, I always enjoyed being creative whether it was through drawing or singing. I feel a calling to change the world and believe I can do so through my love for design, music and helping others, for music is the only language everyone understands and it reaches a special place in everyone’s soul”

Jaron plays acoustic guitar with a tremendous amount of character and rythmic sensuality. There’s a ‘less is more’ aesthetic about him and it’s appealing. His vocals offer subtly soulful, emotional presence. Check out his cover of Al Greene’s “Let’s Stay Together” below:

Great news, then, that this hidden musical gem is in the process of recording an album.

Follow Jaron on Twitter @JaronStrom on Vine and on YouTube and be sure to keep an eye out for his new music.

Moving away from Vine, we find ourselves, once again, taking a look at the great bastion of self-promotion that is Twitter.

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Following potential fans on Twitter in the hope they’ll notice you is a subtly masterful plan and one which worked on me last week. With a username like @JakesGorilla how could I resist checking them out? Turns out they’re a ‘different type’ of rock band (the name comes from a true story of a Gorilla which escaped from a New York zoo) who have an EP entitled “Nice Job of Disturbing the Peace in the Park”. Released back in October 2012, the EP features 5 of the earliest songs and the title was taken directly from a handwritten note on the back of a business card placed on the van windshield of drummer, Aaron Mackin, and discovered upon returning from a video shoot for their first recorded song, ‘Angel Wings’.

This three-piece rock band from New Jersey have been steadily making their prescence felt, opening for acts such as Gin Blossoms and earning a nomination for an Asbury Park Music Award. Made up of the aforementioned drummer Aaron Mackin, Bobby Jacques and Chris Parrilla, this trio provide incredible intensity to their blended style of heavy rock, blues and jazz. They are indeed different, there’s new sound to be heard here. One moment there’s a sense of urgency and restlessness, as can be heard in “Light Me Up” next there’s a spell-binding showcase of folk-jazz in the form of ‘”Night Girl”.

My personal favourite has to be the juggernaut of sound that is “Bitter Cold”

This is a band full of energy, deceptively graceful riffs and courageous lyrical poetry underpinned by a thrilling amount of expertly crafted instrumentals.

Jakes Gorilla are providing utterly joyful music and what’s more, they’re giving it away for free! Visit and download the EP (there is an option to pay for the album which I did as I believe in supporting good music).

Follow Jake’s Gorilla on Twitter @JakesGorilla and on YouTube

-Lucy Jenkins.



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