ST Sessions: Singer-songwriter Jawn is also the man behind home-grown musicians' artwork

Apart from being just a musician, Jawn is also the designer behind logos and artwork of other bands.
Apart from being just a musician, Jawn is also the designer behind logos and artwork of other bands.PHOTO: SCREENGRAB FROM ST SESSIONS

When it comes to pop and contemporary music, upcoming singer-songwriter Jonathan Chan, 25, admits that he was late to the game.

"I came from a piano-learning background so I was listening to a lot of sonatas, classical music and (classical radio station) Symphony 92.4 FM," the home-grown folk-pop artist, who recently released his debut EP, Jawn, says in a previous interview.

"I was always irritated with pop music until I started listening to (Top 40 radio stations) Power 98 and 987FM."

Then a friend introduced him to the music of Norwegian indie-folk act Kings Of Convenience in junior college and he became inspired to sing and write his own tunes.

More than just a musician, the visual communications graduate from Nanyang Technological University is also a talented designer.

He has done artwork and logos for other home-grown indie and pop acts such as Inch Chua, Stopgap and The Sam Willows.

In a recording for ST Sessions, he talks about how he started making music as well as his background in art and design:

Chan, who came up with his stage monicker Jawn to differentiate himself from the frontman of indie-rock band Plainsunset, who is also called Jonathan Chan, says that his first audience members were bunkmates during national service.

"That was the first time I got an audience and not only that, but also encouragement and affirmation," the husky-voiced singer says.

The bachelor, whose father is an engineer and mother, a retired teacher, then honed his performing and songwriting skills through competitions such as the Noise-Timbre Singer-Songwriter Programme as well as the National Arts Council's Noise Music Mentorship programme.

Here, he talks about how songwriting helps him "get stuff out" and the things that inspire his music:

Having done gigs at venues such as the Esplanade, Timbre and Hood Bar, his most memorable performance to date was his EP launch show at an event space in Lorong Ampas.

The 200-capacity venue was packed with friends as well as fans who had been connecting with him through social media.

"Lots of people I didn't know came down, which was very surprising. It's nice to put faces to online handles and previously disembodied names. I liked the intimacy of the launch."

His debut single, Fade To Black, one of the first songs he wrote, is about " letting go of someone gracefully":

He debuts his new song, Want/Need, a tune about being rejected by a girl he liked:







Full list of ST Sessions acts in Season One

List of ST Sessions acts in ongoing Season Two