Featured Photo Credit: Grace Oh
For the past 25 years, Jeremy Roske has traveled the world sharing his music to bring hope, healing and love. His latest single, “A Little Love” encapsulates that mission.
Inspired by the words of the Dalai Lama and Mother Theresa, the track’s lyrics encourage community building and transformation.
Roske infuses his music with elements of inspiration from his travels. His songs are filled with an eclectic mix of Hip Hop, Reggae, and India’s Carnatic music, and utilize instruments such as the West African Kora.
Roske shared with ECHO more about the single, its video and his upcoming album.
What was the inspiration behind your new single, “A Little Love”?
I wrote this song as a response to the intensity we are facing personally and collectively. I believe that every gesture of love ripples out and impacts people in ways we may never know. This is the essence of this song. “All we need is a little love, a bit of care, a gentle touch.” This song is a reminder to start small and watch how a little flame can grow into a mighty fire of healing and transformation.
What was the writing process like?
This song poured out of me. The music and lyrics fell onto the page. It was one of those songs that had to be written. My writing and recording approach was about getting out of the way and letting the music inform me about what was needed. I had to turn off my head and listen to my heart.
You utilized the West African instrument, the Kora, in the song. What drew you to include that element?
The use of the Kora in the song came about quite organically. I did the tracking for “A Little Love” in a small artist community in Bali. The song’s vibe had a magnetic effect, and people would pass by and observe what we were up to. One of those was people was Sebatierra, a very gifted multi-instrumentalist. As soon as we connected, I knew that there was some magic to explore together. He brought his Kora to a session, and as they say, the rest is history. As soon as I heard the enchanting sound, I knew it would match the music’s vibration and intention.
Throughout your career, you have explored all different genres of music. What has it been like blending all those influences together?
As I mentioned before, it always comes down to how I can best serve the music. All the musical influences and life experiences I have had feed the music that I am creating. I like to surprise myself and be unpredictable. I guess I’ve been like a chameleon learning and adapting to the musical styles and environments in which I’ve lived and explored. This is what I loved about freestyling as a rapper; it was exhilarating and terrifying at the same time. I didn’t know what was going to come out of my mouth. I had to be present and open to listen and trust in myself and the flow. That is when the magic happens.
Why do you think it is important to have a song like “A Little Love” out now?
We don’t have to look or go far to see deep division, polarization, violence, and injustice running rampant. This can be overwhelming, and at times we may not know what to do or how to respond. “A Little Love” is a reminder that small acts of kindness can create a tidal wave of change. Now more than ever, it is so important to act with wisdom and compassion. This is my form of activism, pulsing out love and positive vibrations. Whenever I am in conflict, feeling lost, alone, or afraid, I ask myself… what would love do?
What was the process like translating the message of the song into the music video?
Like the song itself, the vision for the music video came in a flash. I saw the essence of the song as a montage of images, the ark of the story clear as day. I wanted the video to be about the message, not about me or any one individual. It is about rising up in love in our hour of greatest need. I worked with a talented friend and filmmaker, Jonah Sutton, to create the video. I feel like he got the vision instantly and created a piece of work that resonates with people in a strong way.
If you could set fans up in the perfect environment to listen to “A Little Love,” what do you imagine it looking like?
It would have to be an intimate live concert on a beach watching the sunset. A small group of friends around a fire lounging on cushions under the stars singing, laughing, and feeling the preciousness of life.
How do you hope people feel after listening to your music?
I hope for people to feel empowered and inspired to be a force of goodness on the planet. For people to feel called to make a little difference in someone’s life and have hope for humanity.
Do you find that creating and sharing your music is therapeutic?
Yes, absolutely! Music is my medicine. It is how I connect myself in the world. Making music opens me up and gives me space to explore the ever-changing landscape of the human experience. Sharing my music with others is a great gift as I see and feel I’m not alone. I’ve always known the healing power of music, and I am grateful to have it.
What can fans look forward to next?
“A Little Love” is a single off my upcoming album, HEART STORM, which drops Oct, 30th 2020. This album reflects a deep transformational journey mapping the terrain of the heart. Harnessing the courage to dive into the dark places, fighting my demons, facing my shadows, and opening more to love. It tells a story of struggle and liberation. It has been a big labor of love, and I am excited to share it with my fans and release it into the world.
What is one quote that you have heard or that you go by that you want to ECHO out to the world?
“Be the change you want to see in the world.”