Jesse Ruben :: Keep Art Alive :: 10 Questions Project

1. What music (or other art form) inspires you when you create your art?

I find that my writing changes a lot depending on what I’m listening to. Right now I’ve been listening to a lot of older music. Sinatra, Dean Martin, Chat Baker. But also really getting into the folk guys. A lot of Bob Dylan obviously, Woddy Guthrie, stuff like that. It’s important for me to know as much as possible about the kind of music I make, and what came before.

2. Long distance road trip: what three people do you invite along (fictional or non-fictional, dead or alive)?

Frank Sinatra, Joni Mitchell, and Louis CK. It’s always good to have someone funny on long car rides.

3. What is your favorite breakfast cereal?

My friends and I just had a very long and intense debate about this via text while I was in Germany last month. I’m gonna go with Waffle Crisp, and I’m standing behind that choice.


4. What is one thing that is hanging on your bedroom wall?

Right now, nothing, because I just moved into a new apartment. But the first thing going up is a whiteboard. I like to see all the words at once when I’m writing a song.

5. What smell/scent evokes strong memories for you?

(have I mentioned these are great questions?)
Editor’s note: Thanks!!
I feel like there are so many, and most of them are related to food. My mom makes brisket a couple times a year, for the Jewish holidays, and it’s the best. Every time I walk into the house when she’s making it I feel like a little kid.
6. Coffee or tea?
Tea. Herbal. I have a hard enough time sleeping as it is, so I try to avoid caffeine.
7. What has been the most impactful compliment, or criticism, you have ever received?
When I was still in college, I played a show that my friend Christen came to. Afterwards, she said to me “you know Jesse, your songs aren’t really a true reflection of who you are”. I got SO offended. At that point in my life, literally all I was doing was writing songs. I was much more arrogant back then, and writing mostly really intense break up songs.
But then she followed it up with “because, you know, you’re a well rounded guy. Sometimes you’re sad, sometimes you’re, ya know, fun” and it was like a lightbulb went off in my head. I do still love sad songs. But I also really like fun songs, and funny songs. I think my writing is much more who I am now, versus who I wanted people to think I was, which was some dark tortured soul.
8. Three words that describe you?
Creative. Difficult. Honest.
9. What is/was your cartoon character crush?
Is there an answer for this that doesn’t make me sound weird? I’m gonna go with pretty much the entire female cast of Archer.
Editor’s note: We LOVE weird and also big bonus points given for entire female cast of Archer!

10. The world is ending in ten minutes and you get to listen to one, and only one, song: Which song?

Brutal question. Probably “Pink Moon” by Nick Drake. But only after I spent the first 7 minutes pacing back and forth trying to pick the perfect song.

Editor’s Note: It is the most brutal of all the questions, and one I would dread answering myself. Pink Moon is a stellar choice though. Have you ever covered it?

Pink Moon :: Nick Drake

You can learn more about Brooklyn singer/songwriter Jesse Ruben , and check out more of his music, here at his official website.

Wanna catch him live? Check-out dates here.

You can get your social on with him, too, via Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.

You can also listen to more music at Jesse Ruben’s Soundcloud. And don’t forget to pick-up the single, This is Why I Need You here.

This is Why I Need You

Jesse will be releasing his EP, A Reply to Violence, later on this year (watch this space for more about it). The title is inspired by a Leonard Bernstein quote he stumbled upon on the side of a school while walking through the East Village:

“This will be our reply to violence, that we make music more intensely,
more beautifully, and more devotedly than ever before”

I want to thank Jesse Ruben, for participating in the Keep Art Alive: 10 Questions Project.

Please remember to support the art and artists you enjoy and discover – be a part of what KEEPS ART ALIVE by going to shows, buying what you can, and supporting and promoting what you love. ALWAYS.

6 thoughts on “Jesse Ruben :: Keep Art Alive :: 10 Questions Project

  1. Okay I totally like this. Did he just sing “There’s not enough chocolate, there’s too many chores” “you make the winter feel warmer” Jesus Christ. These lyrics are <3333. SOLD.

    1. His representation contacted me. He’s great! I look forward to hearing more. He’s from your side of the country and doing a tour – maybe you can catch a show.

      1. Love love love when I can help an artist that way and help someone find a song they enjoy, too. That is really why I do all this

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