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Rising Music Star Jason Buell On The Five Things You Need To Shine In The Music Industry

An Interview With Ming Zhao

As a part of our interview series with leaders, stars, and rising stars in the music industry, we had the distinct pleasure of interviewing Jason Buell.

Jason Buell is a powerhouse vocalist that continues to break the mold as a new artist. Born and raised in a small Northern California town didn’t stop country music singer/songwriter him from chasing a big city dream.

Jason’s love for music began at a very young age. He was 8 years old when he first heard Mel McDaniel’s “Baby’s Got Her Blue Jeans On,” memorizing every lyric. Growing up, his mom worked as a bartender at a local country bar, where artists played live music every Friday and Saturday night. “Country music has been a part of my life since I can remember,” Jason explains. “My mom is also an Elvis junky and when I was a little boy, I would always try to sing like him.”

Thoughts of a music career didn’t start until after he was married and had children. Singing his first solo at church was the first time people outside of his family and friends told him, “Hey you can sing!” It was then he started believing in himself.

Jason moved to Nashville, Tennessee where he would spend the next ten years honing his craft and sharing the stage with some of the biggest names in music has been his dream. With hard work and dedication, he has opened for some of country music’s biggest stars including Thomas Rhett, Brett Eldredge, Mark Chestnutt, Phil Vassar and many more. With a sound that blends traditional country and today’s modern sound, Jason has captured the attention of the music industry.

Jason’s new single “Light Me Up” was released on August 2, 2022, and has already garnered the attention of country radio.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to learn a bit about your “origin story”. Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

Yeah, for sure. I was born in Ukiah, CA — town of around 15,000. Raised by a single mom who always did everything she could to take care of us…worked 2 jobs sometimes. I am the only boy and I have 6 sisters. I spent my early years in a small town about 20 miles from where I was born. No gas station, no post office — basically a little corner store and a lake. Had a fun and wild childhood. Grew up really fast…for better and worse!

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

My wife signed me up to sing in a competition. I won the first couple of rounds, which landed me an opening spot for a national act, and basically my Playing career started there — Kodiak Jack’s, Petaluma CA.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

Hard question… I have had a lot of really cool experiences. Played with some great Musicians etc. I think hearing “Light Me Up on the radio for the first time has been the most surreal moment to date!

It has been said that our mistakes can be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Not funny, really… but just health in general. I think most artists would tell you that thinking you can burn the candle at both ends doesn’t work for very long, and that realizing how important it is to take care of your mind, body and spirit takes some hard lessons. At least for me it did!

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

Putting “Light Me Up” out to radio and recording new material to be released soon…and building off my latest single!

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in music, film, and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

We have a lot of things in the entertainment industry that are simply just shoved down our throats, blasted in our ears, and put in our sights. Biggest difference from today and 20 years ago, is at least now, we have a few more choices. We still only get to see/ hear and taste what entertainment puts out, but with social media, our world has gotten so much smaller and connected. People’s voices are heard at a greater level then ever!

What are your “5 things I wish someone told me when I first started” and why? Please share a story or example for each.

There really aren’t things I wish people would have told me — really, just multiple things I would have listened to:

  1. Hey, you should Move to Nashville! I did, but waited a lot longer then I should have.
  2. Find your own sound and don’t try to sound like other artists. I found my own sounds years ago, but really wish I would have done that very early on!
  3. Pace Yourself. Life is a marathon, not a sprint. Again, I have learned this, but just like so many other lessons in life, you simply must go through it on your own!
  4. It never hurts to ask — all they can say is no. I am a very resilient person and see the glass half full, but it took me a little while in life to know that it never hurts to ask/try!
  5. Don’t pass the buck and own up to your mistakes. Early in life, I got in a lot of trouble from my uncle because I constantly would blame others for things I did wrong. It took some time and some tears, but I learned to never blame others for things I have done. Also, I learned to first look at myself, even when I know it isn’t on me, so I can see every situation from somebody else’s perspective.

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

Take care of your spirit man, your mind and body. Pace yourself, stay in your lane and find your sound.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

Just being the best version of myself and singing music that inspires men to be better husbands and fathers — that’s my main goal!

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

Without question, my wife! We have been together since I was 14 years old. She has been the love of my life, my inspiration and my person who has held me accountable…and simply helped me to be the best man I could Be!

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“Rejection builds character.” One of my best friends in the world started saying this 20 years ago and the countless times in life I have leaned back on that quote is endless!

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. :-)

Well, I have few people that would be on this list — some who aren’t alive anymore, but in music, I would love to not only play a show with Ronnie Dunn, but to hang out with him for a bit would be beyond awesome!!

How can our readers follow you online?

From my website, they can get to all other forms of social media! Jasonbuellmusic.com

This was very meaningful, thank you so much! We wish you continued success!

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Ming S. Zhao

Co-founder and CEO of PROVEN Skincare. Ming is an entrepreneur, business strategist, investor and podcast host.