John Vlasic is a musician and professional photographer, who recently released his debut album, Love for Rock. John grew up in Detroit “Rock City” where he began to forge his style and define his musical tastes. He absorbed the bands that came through his hometown, while partying on the hills of amphitheaters in the summer and downtown venues through the harsh winters. Influenced by a musical atmosphere, he embraces the history and traditions of rock music that fuel the Motor City. This is reflected through driving rifts, powerful vocals and raw emotion that channels his artistic expression into his music.
When he was young, John inherited a record collection from his parent’s, which furthered his exploration into classic rock and his first guitar teacher emphasized the blues. “Music defined me when I was a kid, from the first time I heard the sound of an electric guitar I knew that was for me,” remembers Vlasic. John later attended college at the University of Colorado at Boulder, majoring in Fine Arts, where he selected music and photography as his special interests. During this time he furthered his song writing techniques, which helped to give more direction to his guitar playing. “Reading Jim Morrison’s poetry was very influential at that time in my life, it instilled the view that there are now boundaries in art and what one can accomplish.”
John spent time living in Chicago after school, immersed in the rock and blues scenes of the city, which would influence the writing of his debut album. This album highlights John’s dynamic musical talents through the incorporation of many diverse sounds and moods. The anthemic title track “Love For Rock”, gives a tip of the hat to 80’s metal, referencing centerfolds, limousines and leather.
Continuing to highlight the diverse sounds of this album, blues based song, “The Town Lounge”, was inspired by The Animals, written about a local dive bar in Northern Michigan; “Set In Stone” is the quintessential driving hard rock song with badass lyrics. John wrote “Xxxcess” about the excesses in rock music, inspired by the Scarface quote “nothing exceeds like excess.” “There’s a lot of bullshit that goes along with the ideals of decadency that ultimately take away from music. You don’t want to get caught up in it but enjoy what you do and hold on for the ride.”
The album also has a darker side; “The Endless Threat” reveals a feeling of paranoia and survival, inspired by Black Sabbath. “There will always be the threat of evil, but we can use adversity to make ourselves stronger.” In his songs “Rave” and “Into the Unknown,” John uses the addition of synth lines and atmospheric tones to broaden the soundscape to that of industrial rock. “Music gives me the opportunity to explore,” says John, “It’s about going into new world experiences, armed with my skills learned from the past.”
The lyrics for one of John’s favorites, “Cabana Blue”, was inspired by the leadership of Che Guevara, describing a community which surrounds music, and how that can be revolutionary. “If you feel the same way, follow me,” He invites, “I’ll we waiting for you.” Adding to the different moods and feelings found in this album, “Midnight’s Ours,” takes the listener on a journey through big city lights, filled with mystery and possibility. While the song “North Star” completes the album, depicting the road home from travel and adventure.
John is now back in the Rockies of Colorado, lured by his love for the outdoors and the passion it inspires in him. Musically John’s style stays true to its roots and continues to mold and expand, taking aspects from everywhere in his life, which is now the mountains and the ‘Wild West.’ He heads to the studio in the spring of 2013, teamed up with a group of killer musicians and new songs to record. Stay tuned, for some rockin new jams to emerge this summer!