John K is a rising American pop singer from Orlando, Florida. He is well known for his hit single, “if we never met”, released in 2019. Through the Matignon Mirror’s connection with John Vitti, the founder of Headliners in Education, Abby Boyle (‘21) and Amanda Curran (‘21) were given the opportunity via Zoom to meet with the recording artist.
Written by: Abby Boyle and Amanda Curran
John K did not show interest in music until his second year of college. He referred to music as his “backseat passion” while his main focus was high school athletics. As a sophomore in college, John K’s grandmother told him to audition for season twelve of American Idol, and that moment was when his music career began. John auditioned for the show singing “A Change is Gonna Come” by Sam Cooke in St. Louis, Missouri. He advanced through many rounds but was unfortunately sent home after the Las Vegas round. However, this news did not break his spirits. In the interview, John spoke about how he was always told in the music industry, “There are no failures, only quitters.” Even years later, John says he will doubt himself that the success is there, but he pushes himself to fight that voice in his head that tells him he is not good enough. He emphasizes that self-doubt plays a large part in any profession, but with a positive mindset, anything is possible. His perseverance, determination, and talent led him to sign with Epic Records.
The rising artist’s hit single “if we never met” was released in 2019 and now has over 225 million streams. The song was written about his wife, Lenée, to whom he has been married to for three years now. They live in Orlando, Florida with their dog, Lily. John believes that without his wife’s influence, he wouldn’t be pursuing music. To him, the song is like a love letter and comes from a vulnerable place. The song has shown him how vulnerability will always win in his music. John believes that this song particularly has allowed him to develop a personal connection with his fans.
John’s style of music has a very mellow and calming sound. He tends to gravitate toward that vibe, and it works out how his soothing vocals sit over certain tracks. In the songwriting process, he always focuses on the melody and structure. When brainstorming for his music videos, John and his team use creative outlets that separates him from other artists. He is a big believer in collaboration and is surrounded by a great team. He likes to “use adrenaline in a positive way,” and he feeds off the energy in a room. John mentioned that during his shows, he sings the same song a different way at each show because it feels emotionally right within the crowd.
Along with his outstanding music videos, John K uses his social media platform to really engage his audience. He posts content that appeals to each platform individually. For example, on Instagram he focuses on elevating visuals to bring attention to his posts. He believes that it is better to not overthink and to not be afraid to make a mistake. He mentioned that although his career can be overwhelming at times, at the end of the day, it’s supposed to be fulfilling.
Due to the current situations with the pandemic, John has not had the ability to tour. Throughout 2020, he has performed some shows over Zoom and has continued to work with his team to compose more music. He is excited to finalize and release songs that he has written over the past three years. Along with his collaboration with country singer, Kelsea Ballerini, John is also looking forward to collaborations with other music artists in the near future. On November 13th, John K is dropping a debut project called “Love + Everything Else” and has recently released a new single, “cheap sunglasses”, so make sure you give it a listen!