“I almost quit playing music altogether,” singer/songwriter and front man of Afterlife Parade Quinn Erwin muses, “but I kept waking up and going to sleep thinking about it; and I couldn't keep teaching my students to pursue their passions and not do it myself.”
Inspired by his students, this former full time teacher decided to model what he had been teaching for so long and moved to Nashville to pursue a life-long dream. Armed with an arsenal of songs, a hard fought wisdom, and a heartfelt ambition to reach people, he is carving a path for himself in the world of music.
In just a few short years, he's released two e.p.s, A New Day and White As Snow (a collection of Christmas songs), a full length album (A Million Miles Away) produced by Jeremy McCoy (bass player for The Fray), and started a band called Afterlife Parade. He was the Grand Prize Winner of the 2010 Jansport Battle of the Bands (winning over 2,000 + artists) and played at The Forecastle Festival in Louisville, KY alongside The Flaming Lips, The Smashing Pumpkins, Spoon, and She & Him. He was also named IMVU Artist of the Month in August 2010.
Known for crafting heart-on-sleeve lyrics with unforgettable melodies, Quinn is hoping that his soulful tenor will cut through the wall of sound begging for people's attention today. Pulling from musical influences as diverse as Glen Hansard, Pete Yorn, Kevin Prosch, David Bazan, and Peter Gabriel, Quinn has created a blend of folk pop that he describes as the sound of “hope and fear colliding.”
“I have a strong desire to write and sing songs that are true and that give people hope. As much as I write for myself, I feel like my songs are just bridges to others, and I hope in the long run that I'm helping my audience find words for emotions they might be feeling.”
“Life is one big story to me, and I'm learning what my part in the story is and sharing what I know of the story.”
Let the journey begin.
Quinn plays solo as well as with other rotating musicians when necessary for larger events.
Released A New Day EP in January 2009
Released Winter Exhales in December 2009
Released A Million Miles Away in May 2010
Released White As Snow in November 2010
With Afterlife Parade:
Released Death January 2011
Released Rebirth August 2011
JanSport® Announces the Grand Prize Winner of its Online Battle of the Bands Competition
[+ Show ]
San Leandro, Calif. (January 25, 2010) – JanSport, the original outdoor gear Brand that equips peo...San Leandro, Calif. (January 25, 2010) – JanSport, the original outdoor gear Brand that equips
people globally with quality backpacks, travel gear and collegiate apparel, today announced
Quinn Erwin as the Grand Prize Winner of its online Battle of the Bands competition
Quinn Erwin was officially announced as the winner of JanSport's Battle of the
Bands competition at the Halfway to Forecastle show in Louisville, Kentucky on Saturday
evening, January 23, 2010. As the Grand Prize winner, he will also have the opportunity to
share the stage with some of the biggest names in music and play in front of thousands of fans,
press and industry reps at the Forecastle Festival in Louisville, KY this July 2010.
"I am completely honored and excited to have won,” said Erwin, singer-songwriter based in
Nashville, TN, after being announced as the competition’s grand prize winner. “I didn't expect it
at all. I am so grateful to everyone who voted for me as well as JanSport for putting this
"It was great to have Quinn Erwin, the winner of this year's Battle of the Bands, perform at
Forecastle,” said JK McKnight, producer of The Forecastle Festival. “His style and skills fit the
diverse musical palette we strive to showcase at Forecastle, and he represents one of our most
loyal sister cities, Nashville, TN.”
Writing and performing since 1998, Erwin continues to captivate his audiences, creating and
perfecting an original sound that brings a new voice to modern music. In 2009 Erwin released
his first e.p., A New Day, and is now in the studio working on his latest project, A Million Miles
Away. Visit www.myspace.com/quinnerwin.
For more information about JanSport's Battle of the Bands competition and its grand prize
winner, log onto www.jansport.com/forecastle.
Q+A with Jansport Unzipped
[+ Show ]
JS: Where do you and your band call home? QE: We’re all from the Nashville, TN area. JS: Do y...JS: Where do you and your band call home?
QE: We’re all from the Nashville, TN area.
JS: Do you write your own songs?
QE: All my songs are originals.
JS: Where does the inspiration for your songs come from?
QE: My last project that came out this past May (A Million Miles Away)
was a concept album about the long journey, so a lot of it was
inspired by years of being on the road and the things I learned about
myself and others along the way. Other than that, I am inspired by
books I read, movies I watch, students I teach, faith, and just life
JS: Are you working on anything new at the moment?
QE: I have a few irons in the fire. I am hoping to put out a few e.p.s
over the course of this year. My producer and I are gearing up to
record a split e.p. project with no set finish date and a Christmas
e.p. due in November.
JS: What is your favorite song from your latest album and why?
QE: That is a really tough question. It really depends on the day.
Right now I would probably say the title track “A Million Miles Away”
though because it is the oldest (6 years) and has been through the
most in its evolution. I wrote it while I was still in college; I was
just a student who longed for something more in life. I’ve played it
with others who impacted its structure along the way, so when I play
it, it brings back a lot of fond memories; it is a song that is
positively affected by a close knit community of friends. I guess I’m
a little sentimental about it in that aspect. Beyond that, I think
the message of A Million Miles Away has also stuck with me and even
changed over time. At one point, I lost a dear friend in a terrible
car accident, and I dedicated it to him at a show; it was almost like
those words were his own words to his friends and family. It was a
very powerful moment. When I sing it now, it just represents a
powerful longing and drive to discover what is beyond– it has become
a hymn for me in many ways.
JS: What’s on your playlists these days? (what you’re listening to)
QE: Alligator and High Violet by The National has been in constant
rotation. I can’t get enough of those guys. Other than that, I’ve
been listening to Two Suns by Bat For Lashes, Curse Your Branches by
David Bazan, Wolfgang Amadeaus Phoenix by Phoenix, Hello Hurricane by
Switchfoot, and Everything Broken Social Scene (one of my favorite
JS: How did you come to work with JanSport?
QE: I connected with a website called Sonicbids, and they promoted the
Jansport Battle of the Bands, and I entered and won…So here I am!
JS: What are your hopes for the near future?
QE: Well, I’d like to get on the road more this year, connect with other
bands, connect with and grow my fan base, and continue working on
TV/film placements. I would also like to do a bit more with a
non-profit organization that I’ve partnered with called Global
JS: Who do you consider your musical influences?
QE: Wow. Where do I begin? I think that a lot of what I am listening
to now really reflects my influences at the moment, but if I were to
give bands that I always come back to or bands/artists that have
changed the way I view music completely I would have to say (in no
particular order) Genesis, Peter Gabriel, The Appleseed Cast, The
Frames, The National, Broken Social Scene, Switchfoot, David Bazan,
Pete Yorn, Death Cab for Cutie, Sigur Ros, Kashmir, Kevin Prosch,
Radiohead, Delirious?, Future of Forestry, and Tom Petty to name a
JS: What has been your favorite place to perform?
QE: One of my favorites is Rivertown Coffee Co. in Florence, AL. If
you haven’t been down to the Shoals area, you’re missing out on a
unique piece of American culture.
JS: Tell us about your most memorable performance to date.
QE: The halfway event for Forecastle was pretty memorable this year.
It was interesting to play solo (just me and an acoustic), and then be
followed by an all night dance/ trance party. It was pretty wild
needless to say, but it shows that Forecastle is all about diversity;
I can definitely appreciate that.
JS: What are you looking forward to most at Forecastle?
QE: It is going to be such an honor to play alongside so many bands
that I admire and respect along with an entirely new audience. It is
especially cool to be able to share this festival with some bands from
Nashville like Paper Route and Civil Twilight; I hope everyone will
check them out—their shows are not shows to be missed.
JS: Any other comments?
QE: I would just like to give Jansport and everyone who voted for me a
hearty “thank you”– you have created an amazing opportunity for me.
I’d also like to thank everyone for taking the time to listen and
supporting what I do—you guys are awesome.
One to Watch: Quinn Erwin
[+ Show ]
"A friend recently turned me on to Nashville musician Quinn Erwin, whose music blends a tinge of alt..."A friend recently turned me on to Nashville musician Quinn Erwin, whose music blends a tinge of alt-country (even some very early R.E.M. on opener “Hold On Tight”) with Britrock influences like Starsailor and Travis. His album, A Million Miles Away, was released in 2010 and is worth checking out."
Serda's Songwriter's Night
Album Review: The Afterlife Parade-Death
[+ Show ]
"Afterlife Parade’s brand new EP Death, released January 31st, is a six-track playlist brimming with..."Afterlife Parade’s brand new EP Death, released January 31st, is a six-track playlist brimming with emotion. After experiencing a bout of loss himself, singer/songwriter Quinn Erwin was determined to write a song that celebrated death as a ‘homecoming’ rather than struggle. With a move to Nashville came a move in Erwin’s musical career, and the creation of an honest, stripped-back work of art. Produced by The Fray’s bassist Jeremy McCoy, Death is an EP that will provide a shoulder to cry on for any listener. The counterpart EP Rebirth is due for release in April and promises to deliver a completely different upbeat and percussive sound. It is clear already that Afterlife Parade is more than just a one-trick pony.
The EP’s self-titled track ‘Death’ has a soulful rock vibe that hits a spell of emotion immediately after the EP’s short introduction. It makes no hesitation in setting the bar for the rest of the tracks, with its mysterious vocal harmonies and rhythmic drum beats. It is Erwin’s vocals, though, that set the track alight. While the lyrics are repetitive, they are delivered in such a way that you not only hear the sound, but you listen to it. “It’s everywhere you look, It’s always on your mind, You can’t escape the tide”. The track has a hypnotic feel, much like that of the ‘Foals’ new album, and the distinctive undertones lead us into a place where we are submerged in pure musical talent.
‘Nothing But Love Can Stay’, is the most heartfelt track on the EP. It takes a different perspective instrumentally, with the addition of a piano. The strong chords support a deep vocal performance, while the female backing vocals provide a two-toned harmony that allows an easy listening, multi-instrumental track.
‘Arrows Fly’ is certainly a recommended track. While it takes a more of an acoustic approach than the hard-hitting ‘Death’, its depth is not compromised. The track starts slow, with the vocals dominating, supported only by a single guitar. The narrative tells a story of loss, which is bound to keep listeners hooked. Erwin tugs at the heartstrings, with a relatable track on more levels than one. While ‘Arrows Fly’ is lyrically simple, its meaning is left open for interpretation, and it is this that makes the track so beautiful.
‘Simple’ is a track which lives up to its name. Once again, only a guitar leads, with a soft plucking of the strings that fills your ears with a pleasant melody. It is a more husky vocal performance from Erwin, as he asks questions about love, and answers them in an unplugged, unedited manner. ‘Simple’ may, too many, seem the quietest track, but it is the lyrics that provide the magic. “I’ve tried so hard to figure you out, You’re way too big to get my head around, But if love is this simple, could we throw out all the rules?” The last track is an upbeat ending. ‘Afterlife Parade’ is filled with ooh’s and aah’s and is a real celebration. The song feels triumphant. It is supported with clapping, a strong drum beat and elevated vocals which you can’t help but smile to.
Death is an EP that has proved itself to be, on the contrary, full of life. It is clear that Afterlife Parade is here to stay, and with a second EP on the way, there is no denying why. The EP is a definite must to get you through February, whether you’ve experienced loss yourself, or you just need a good background song for your travels, it’s bound to impress. If you’ve got an acoustic side, or love a good alternative/rock song, Death is definitely for you. It shows, as an EP should, a new multi-talented artist with definite diversity. You can listen for free on their MySpace right now!"
[+ Show ]
"First we have the "Death" E.P. by Afterlife Parade, which was released last week and is available o..."First we have the "Death" E.P. by Afterlife Parade, which was released last week and is available on iTunes and Bandcamp. Afterlife Parade is known to his Mum as Quinn Erwin, and this is his response to a series of losses in his life and the lives of those around him. He describes "Death" as "deep, dark and atmospheric", which sums it up better than I can. There is a second EP due out in April called "Rebirth" which, by contrast, will apparently be "upbeat, percussive and a bit electronic".
I have listened to the EP three times now and I like it more each time. To "deep, dark and atmospheric" I would add "emotional without ever tipping over into melodramatic". My two favourite tracks are "Simple" and this one, "Arrows Fly". The guitar, cello, drums and prairie winds work really well together and the lyrics draw you in as well - clearly a metaphor for something I can't quite put my finger on."
Full band set:
A New Day
You Can Come Back Home
Against the Wall
Come On, Come On
A Million Miles Away
You Can Come Back Home
I Won't Back Down (Tom Petty)
Come On, Come On
Don't Pass Me By
All I Need Is
When You Call
Love Ain't a Distance
On and On You Go
Down By the Water
There are no upcoming dates at this time.