LONE is a collection of songs that were written and developed over several years, and completed during the COVID-19 lockdown of late 2020/2021. These songs were an attempt to create something distinct in my discography. Not necessarily a new direction, but rather a momentary deviation. I forced myself out of my comfort zone by removing my more identifiable musical features – vocals and guitar. Instead, these four songs are instrumental piano-based pieces, relying on jazz-inspired drums for the rhythm section, with occasional melodic assistance from trumpets on top of an atmospheric base of seaboard, synths, and string arrangements. Some songs take inspiration from field recordings such as “Bar” which features a sample from an improvised performance at an empty music venue on an early Saturday afternoon, or “Bridge” which includes a sample of my car driving over the Sault Ste Marie International Bridge between Canada and the US. Continuing with the theme of isolation and loneliness, all the performances and the entire production of the EP were done alone.

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LOSS (2020) is the sibling album to LOVE (2019). On LOSS, Jean-Paul covers the devastating hardships experienced by himself, his friends and family. These include the loss of a close friendship (Clench), the closing of a friends’ recording studio (Holes), loss of sanity (Wreck), the divorce of his parents (I Need), and the tragic passing of some extended family members (There’s Been An Accident). Musically, this album falls somewhere between alternative/rock/progressive featuring typical instruments (electric guitars, bass, drums) and vocals (everything from distorted metal screams to pristine choirs), but with additional instrumentation including harp, organ, electronics and orchestral arrangements for string and horn sections over the span of its 12 tracks.

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Moving in a bold, new direction and venturing more into the folk world, De Roover explores the subject of “love” widely and brings a fresh perspective to the eternal truths. LOVE was recorded and mixed at De Roover’s own studio, Blueprints – one of the many life-changing experiences he’s had in recent years alongside getting married, buying a house, and having a son, not to mention a ruptured ear drum while touring – and it was born out of the challenge to veer from the dark, melancholic songs he’d been writing, toward delving into positive lyrics that more accurately reflect his current life situation.

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Biography

Jean-Paul De Roover’s musical upbringing was anything short of ordinary.

Inspired to play music after reading a book about a child violinist, he begged his parents to learn to play violin where he was promptly coerced into piano lessons. After two years he was given the chance to learn violin in Pakistan where he was immediately disappointed with his progress and stopped. Moving forward to his early teens, he was gifted a handmade Bolivian guitar from the local market and self-taught himself how to play his first Beatles song. A smattering of lessons with a Brazilian jazz bass player, Dutch singer-songwriter and Chilean vocal coach encouraged De Roover to continue pursuing music, but following his own inspirations. Upon returning to Canada in 2001 he explored everything from concert band to barbershop while forming his first rock and punk bands before studying theory, composition and orchestration at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, ON where he graduated in 2009.

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Joey Balducchi | Spherical Productions
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