10 up-and-coming acts in NJ’s iconic music scene
You know how fertile New Jersey's soil is when it comes to growing successful musicians. Or maybe it's something in the water. But in any case, the Garden State's rich music history goes way back to the likes of Sinatra, Bruce, and Bon Jovi. More recently, acts like Brian Fallon, Jack Antonoff, Charlie Puth, and My Chemical Romance have taken Jersey attitude and introduced it to people around the country and world in their own unique ways.
In a way that must be a lot of pressure for young musicians trying to rise through the ranks and make it in a wildly unpredictable profession. That is a lot to live up to. But luckily for us that hasn't stopped some of our NJ neighbors from trying.
If you are on the hunt for some new local music, here are ten New Jersey music acts you should have on your radar!
Formed in Sparta, NJ in 2013. Deal Casino has been compared to a wide range of predecessors including Neon Trees and early Smashing Pumpkins.
Rachel Ana Dobken
Rachel calls Asbury Park, NJ home. When it comes to making music, she wears many hats. Rachel Ana Dobken is an excellent drummer, guitarist, singer, piano player, and producer.
When Remember Jones isn't composing original music, he's likely creating new and outstanding ways to present songs we've been singing forever. To name a couple, Remember Jones has performed Amy Winehouse's Back To Black album, as well as Kanye West's 808s & Heartbreak.
"Let 'em Look"
"Save The Planet"
Wall Township's very own. Halogens take very familiar sounds, like mid 2000s emo rock and pop/punk, and turn them into some of the most infectious music you've heard in a long time. I mean infectious in a loving and catchy way - not like gangrene.
When you hear Asbury Park's Natalie Farrell sing, you can hear an excellent mix of soul, R&B, jazz, and rock.
"Keep Your Memory"
The Mercury Brothers first formed in 2014. Since then they have given people hope for the future of blues and rock music.
The Break Plans
This Freehold based group came together in a very unorthodox way...via a Craigslist ad. The trio does an incredible job toeing the line between alternative rock and EDM.
"Not in My Head"
The Happy Fits
Originating in Clinton, the Happy Fits take the spirit of bands like the Black Keys and The Violent Femmes and create indie rock that you can't help but tap your foot to.
"So Hot, Cool, Whatever"
It all started as a solo project for singer Natalie Newbold, but the rest, as they say, is history. This pop group has shared the stage with the likes of New Found Glory and Manchester Orchestra.
"I Know Better"
Bradley Beach's own Backhouse combine alternative and psychedelic music. Their debut single only came out in the summer of 2019, so it should be fun to see how this band grows.
"Sunny Side of the Sidewalk"
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 producer, writer, and host Joe Votruba. Any opinions expressed are his own.