Jason Greenwald
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Jason Greenwald

Band Folk Acoustic

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Published: Thursday, October 27, 2005
By Erin McGroarty

The sound of music could be heard all over Martin Luther Hall. Slowly and surely people wandered into the Martin Luther Underground last Thursday night, Oct. 20, to support the performers scheduled to play for the Resident Hall Association (RHA) Coffeehouse. This event occurs on two Thursdays out of the month from 9 to 11 p.m. in the Martin Luther Underground. Besides good music, RHA provides free Dunkin Donuts, coffee and hot chocolate for the evening. A wide variety of donuts as well as the smaller Munchkins keep the crowd full and ready to enjoy the entertainment.

This Thursday, Jason Greenwald '06 was the opener for the Coffeehouse. His soft sound and great voice set the perfect mood for the start of the evening. Greenwald played loud enough to command everyone's attention in the room but soft enough so that it wasn't overpowering. Though he was an unexpected performer, Greenwald seemed to come with his own audience. Greenwald is a student from Tulane University but after hearing him perform, it is easy to see why he would have gained fans so quickly. Because he is only here for the rest of this semester, his future performances are limited. - Muhlenberg Weekley


Published: Wednesday, November 30, 2005
By Kristyn Pomranz

While most victims of Hurricane Katrina found relief in canned food, bottled water and shelter, Jason Greenwald eschewed such sundries in favor of music. Finding himself flooded out of Tulane University for the semester, Jason decided to forgo a permanent roof in favor of the open road and his trusty baseball cap. His musical misadventures have led him to the Red Sea (6511 Delmar Boulevard, University City; 314-863-0099), where he will be performing on Saturday, December 4. Sounding like a stripped-down Matt Nathanson, Greenwald will make you feel selfishly pleased that his NOLA exile led him to the Loop. - The Riverfront Times


New Orleans student pursuing interrupted music career plays in Cape Girardeau.

Published: Friday, December 2, 2005
By Matt Sanders

Since late August, musician Jason Greenwald has been one of the thousands displaced from New Orleans. Like those others, he fled the city just before Hurricane Katrina, expecting to go back in a few days and maybe find some busted windows in his Garden District apartment.

Now his exile has brought him to Cape Girardeau, where the acoustic rocker will play two nights of shows, tonight and Saturday, with the Mike Renick Band at the Rude Dog Pub.

The day he left New Orleans, Greenwald and his friends spent 12 hours on interstate highways, making their way into Florida for temporary sanctuary. All Greenwald took was his recording equipment and a few clothes.

But he soon found out those items wouldn't be enough, since he wouldn't be able to live in New Orleans for months.

"There was definitely a period where I wasn't certain exactly what I was going to do," Greenwald said. "I thought about volunteering, but that didn't come through."

Instead Greenwald, a student at Tulane, arranged to finish his semester at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Penn. There he found his aim, focusing on writing music and starting to play shows on the East Coast.

Now Greenwald is working on a new album with an unknown release date and trying to raise his profile on the indie music scene.

The New York native originally moved to New Orleans in 2003 to start school there. He had just began the first semester of his second year when Katrina struck, forcing him to relocate temporarily.

The hurricane flooded his apartment, ruining furniture he and his roommates had bought only days before. His Martin guitar was also ruined, but another guitar was spared. News of the loss of the guitar somehow got to the Martin company, which presented Greenwald with a new instrument at a Philadelphia news conference this fall.

Of course, New Orleans haunts Greenwald wherever he goes. On tour this fall, questions about the devastated city and his experiences will inevitably come up.

"It's like, you want to tell people, but you don't want to, because you want to have an unbiased crowd, you want people to listen to the music," Greenwald said.

While he doesn't want New Orleans to overshadow his music, he isn't shy about the subject, either. When the topic of rebuilding the city comes up, he has one basic idea to convey to people: Come back to New Orleans. The city will rebuild, as will its healthy music scene, Greenwald says.

Greenwald plans his own return to New Orleans in January to resume school. For a musician, Greenwald says, there's no better place to be than in the Big Easy.

"There are venues that have everything from funk, jazz, blues, rock, and even an R&B hip-hop scene," said Greenwald. "It seems like everyone appreciates all different types of music."

There should be a market for Greenwald, given the popularity of acoustic/folk artists in today's market. His music carries on the tradition of recent folk-rock heroes like Jack Johnson and Ben Harper, with a delicate, stripped-down blend of pop and folk-infused acoustic rock.

The tunes carry a softness that is occasionally speckled with an instrumental intensity provided by only the sounds of guitar, keyboard and voice.

When the young musician resumes his interrupted life in New Orleans he hopes to make the city a home base for launching his own career. He'll look for musicians, play out shows along the Gulf Coast and continue his college career.

He hopes to be part of rebuilding the cultural vibrance of a city that has been through a great shock. - Southeast Missourian


Published: Wednesday, April 19, 2006
By Sheri M.B. McKee

Oddly enough, we forget to think about the many students that are part of our community when it comes to Hurricane Katrina. One has grabbed my attention more than any other as a musician and individual working towards helping the New Orleans community. Tulane University student, Jason Greenwald, is definitely someone that you want to keep your eyes on as an upcoming musical success. I caught his show at the House of Blues in the Parish Room last night where he opened for New Monsoon, and was completely blown away by his soulful polished style. I turned to my husband and commented how we were watching the next Dave Mathews or John Mayer right there on stage. You could see clearly that Jason lives through his music and instantly connects with his audience. Although Jason Greenwald is a mere 20- years old, his lyrics and musical style define a new generation that appeals to all. I had the opportunity to speak with Jason about his ordeal of being a displaced Tulane “refugee” and a musician this past fall, which was enlightening to me as a resident of our city.

Jason had been attending Tulane University for 2 years before the huge Katrina evacuation this past fall. He became another “refugee” just like the rest of us even though he’s originally from New York. He was displaced for over six months at a small school in Pennsylvania up in the woods. He referred to it as being the complete opposite of New Orleans, not social whatsoever. In high school, Jason played music in a band, but as a senior his musical inspiration blew up and he started to really feel the need to express himself musically. Needless to say, while stuck in a place he thought he’d never be at, just like the rest of us, Jason pulled great inspiration from the heartache he felt as his new home of New Orleans was drowning in the floodwaters.

“New Orleans music is a big influence for me along with Paul Simon, Phish, the Grateful Dead, and Dylan. When I was up in Pennsylvania, I felt so disconnected and it was hard because so much was in the realm of the unknown as you were watching it all unfold on television. I found a lot of lyrics were just coming out of me at the time like my song, Traveler. It was the first thing that happened while I felt lost during that time. Lyrics are very important and I feel like they are connecting, touching lives, and setting a mood,” said Greenwald.

Although Jason’s major is still undecided, he fills his schedule up with music classes at Tulane. Jason refers to himself as a singer songwriter that plays folk rock with his acoustic guitar. He has recently been compared to as being the next Jack Johnson, but after seeing his show, I truly believe I was watching the next John Mayer and there is no doubt you’ll soon be hearing his music on the local radio stations when his record comes out. As a music buff, I’m already putting my request in for his CD and have downloaded his stuff so I can listen to it when writing. Jason has found great success and publicity on www.myspace.com/jasongreenwald .

“My space has publicized my musical career cause my generation grew up using the Internet and we know the ways of getting the big things out there,” said Greenwald. “For instance, I played this show up in Memphis and there was already a group of people there aware of me.”

For Jason, the Internet is just another great medium to use for getting his name out and developing a fan base just as other artists have chosen to do. So far, he’s played at a benefit for the Tulane Athletic Department and is always looking for new opportunities and shows to play in order to help the New Orleans Community. He loves the stage and live music since you can really reach out to people, connect and touch them on many different levels. He loves being down here in New Orleans, since he can share the stage with so many great artists and perform in places like Tips and the HOB. Jason plans on recording an album this summer and has done many shows recently with fellow band member’s drummer Will Liedtke, electric guitarist Ben Kaplan, and good friend piano player Josh Rutt who’s also very popular up North. Josh is definitely another musician to keep your eye on as the two sang together on a couple of songs and had the audience cheering for more.

A very enlightening comment that Jason made was the popularity and support of the music scene in New Orleans. He believes that since Katrina, there has been strong support towards local musicians compared to other things going on in the city. He also said that he viewed Mardi Gras as being successful for musicians having attended many sold out shows including one for the Radiators.

Be sure to catch Jason around the city during the next few weeks playing different shows solo and with his band. You can visit his URL at my space to check his latest gig schedule and listen to some of his incredible music. You will truly be amazed with - BayouBuzz.com


Discography

"For Me, For You" - August 2006

Photos

Bio

"Sounding like a stripped-down Matt Nathanson, Greenwald will make you feel selfishly pleased that his NOLA exile led him to [your town]." - The Riverfront Times

"After hearing him perform, it is easy to see why he would have gained fans so quickly." - Muhlenberg Weekly

"Jason Greenwald is definitely someone that you want to keep your eyes on as an upcoming musical success." - bayoubuzz.com