In this impactful article Justin provides detailed reasoning for his continued success in the music industry. Songwriter and bassist for the band 3 Door Down, Justin has found himself playing in shows and traveling around the world. This opportunity did not happen overnight...
Born 10 miles South of Asheville, North Carolina in the city of Arden, Justin explains why keeping an open mind towards all opportunities has had importance on elevating his career to where it is today. How taking risks in uncomfortable situations and confidence in his skillset has lead him to adding a solo career to his repertoire. With the announcement of a new song release coming soon.
What part of your JOURNEY gives you daily purpose?
"I’d probably say always striving to better myself. Anything I’m doing I wanna learn as much as I can from everyone I can. I try to apply that to everything I do, not just music."
How do you approach taking a RISK to elevate your career and yourself as a person?
"I keep an open mind first off. You never know where an opportunity will take you or how it will present it’s self. It could be something very unexpected and out of your comfort zone, often times risky in some way. Being prepared and confident in your skills and having a willingness to adapt and over come are crucial."
What does the word TRUE mean to you and how does it impact your life?
"True to me immediately brings to mind True To Yourself- never change who you are to try and fit in or conform to a popular movement or gain “cheap heat” exposure. In music especially being yourself goes further and earns more respect. This mindset permeates every aspect of your life not just in a career path, but relationships with friends and family."
How did you end up in Nashville?
"I’ve had been traveling to Nashville to either perform or write music since 2004. I fell in love with the city and it’s creative supportive atmosphere and history. 6 years ago after about a million miles of traveling back and forth from my hometown in North Carolina, In between jobs and bands, I made the move permanent. Everyone in 3Doors Down is based in and around the Nashville area so it made sense and felt right. I always felt like I belonged here."
Favorite thing to do in the city?
"Writers Rounds for sure- getting out and seeing fellow songwriters and friends perform original music in an intimate setting always keeps me humbled and reminds me why I’m in Nashville and why I love music. Preds games are pretty great too hahahahaha"
When did you decide music would be your career choice?
"Id say it’s been an evolution starting i think in early high school years going to local rock shows and big concerts out of town. I had been playing guitar awhile and jamming with friends or playing at church. I always had a drive to play but after seeing and feeling the energy and emotion from live shows I was totally hooked. I knew then I wanted to be on the stage, not just in the crowd. After high school I began touring in a band I had started with some friends and before I knew it I was in my mid 20s. I think that’s a big turning point for a lot of people. The “get a real job” feeling starts creeping in and most just move on to something more stable or reliable which I totally understand. I just kept working at it though and for whatever reason never had that feeling. To me I always thought I was putting in work on a career path and had a big picture in mind. I had no clue where it would take me but I knew I needed serious hard work and dedication if I was going to get anywhere. Even now I apply that same mindset to what I’m doing with my solo country music. Writing as much as possible, practicing singing and playing and honing those skills. So I think its been an on going decision to pursue this."
Favorite part of your occupation?
"I love entertaining and performing live, that’s always been my passion. But it’s a very close tie to Travel. I’ve gotten to play in every state in the US and I’ve been around the world. I NEVER take that for granted. Anywhere we go I try to get out and find the history, find the local legends find the local food and beer. Really experience where I am. It’s an absolute blessing to see these places and I take full advantage."
What are you currently working on and have planned for the year ahead?
"Currently getting all the parts together for my next single release! The song is called “Runaway” and I’m really proud of it. Also booking solo shows as much as I can between 3 Doors Down tours and writing songs almost everyday. I love writing with people and I’m extremely blessed to get to do that as much as I do with so many amazingly talented people in Nashville. The outline plan I have in mind is put out more music myself, play more shows and tackle whatever opportunities come from that."
What is your most memorable Team Summer memory?
"Last summer took a trip to the Grayton Beach 30A area in between our summer tour. Left my cellphone off and in the hotel room for almost 6 days straight. That felt amazing. For all the great stuff these things can do I think everyone knows too well how bad they can be. I felt like a cloud was lifted and really just enjoyed the days. They went by slower and I had a ton of creative moments that I wrote down with pencil and paper. It’s something I need to do more often but that trip last summer was perfect, even put it in a song recently haha."
Favorite city that you have visited on the road and what about it makes it special to you?
"I’ve always loved Charleston SC and surrounding areas. Amazing food and beaches. So much history and history preserved. I could spend hours just wandering around the historic downtown. Munich and Berlin are really great cities as well. History everywhere mixed with great beer and food. Also really enjoy a lot of places in Japan. Such a different culture and way of life. As an outsider it’s just so exciting to experience."
Advice you have for someone following in your footsteps?
"Take every opportunity that comes up and run with it. You never know where it’ll lead. And be prepared to work your ass off. Don’t ever think a job is “beneath” you. Get in, do the dirty jobs and work your way up. Always stay humble, stay true to yourself, but don’t let anyone walk all over you. It sounds cheesy but if you have a dream, chase it and don’t be afraid to step outside your comfort zone."
Website coming soon JustinBiltonen.com
Justin Biltonen music available @ Itunes & Spotify
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