After coming together in early 2019, the Toronto based group, bloom has spent the past two years writing, recording and honing their craft. The alternative trio consisting of members Jackson Courtnall, Chris Giannaris and Noah Levine – creates music that blurs the line between hip-hop, R&B and pop. The group has already accomplished a lot in a short amount of time. Since the release of their debut album in 2020, bloom has garnered almost 2 million streams to date. But the group shows no signs of stopping as I sit down with them over a zoom video chat.
Myaah Farrell: How did bloom come together as a group?
Noah Levine: Basically we all went to Queen’s University together and I knew Chris and Jackson separately. Jackson was a DJ at some of the nightclubs around Queen’s and Chris is an amazing guitar player. So me and him [Chris] would be in my room trying to make a song but we didn’t have the production aspect. So, after getting to know Jackson better I started bothering him to come over and make music. So me, him and Chris started working together and now we’re here, basically.
Farrell: How would you describe your music style?
Chris Giannaris: I guess it’s an amalgamation of all our various music tastes that we grew up on. I was really into grunge, rock and metal as a kid. That’s the stuff I learned how to play guitar on so a lot of our music is inspired by that. There’s an EDM aspect ‘cause that’s where Jackson came from. And RnB and hip-hop kinda ties it all together cause it’s something we all enjoy.
Farrell: What was the inspiration behind your latest single ‘Good Girls’ ?
Courtnall: So the idea behind this entire song isn’t about problems that i’ve dealt with or that I’m currently dealing with. It’s more so about problems that I fear about the future. You know if we do start to get famous and pop off or go to LA. You’re always dealing with fake people out there and you don’t really know who’s real and who’s not.
Farrell: You’ve been a group since 2019. How do you solve creative differences and decide what direction to go in?
Courtnall: I mean honestly sometimes I’m producing the song and Chris and Noah will say something or have another idea while we’re working. And those suggestions …sometimes I’ll say that’s a stupid idea but other times they’ll suggest something that I fuck with a lot. And overall I think that benefits us, that we have three creative minds working on a song at the same time.
Farrell: Can you describe your creative process? When writing lyrics what goes through your head?
Jackson Courtnall: For the most part we really don’t write lyrics first at all. You know i’m a producer so I produce everything top to bottom and Chris plays the guitar. So, when we’re down in the studio and just making music we just get a feeling or emotions are brought out while we’re making the song. And the lyrics just kinda start to come to us. They literally just pop in my head while I’m producing and we kinda pull the lyrics after. We never like sit there and write lyrics on a piece of paper and be like “okay let’s build a song around this”. It’s the other way around.
Farrell: What music release are you most proud of?
All: Probably our song ‘Save your Prayers’.
Farrell: Most of your success has happened during the pandemic. How have you been connecting with fans without live shows?
Courtnall: We do a lot of live streams on instagram and Tiktok. But mainly being super active on all platforms. We just started a discord the other day so we have a group chat with all our core fans which is really cool.We’re very catered to keeping up with our fans and talking to them. And making music videos which is something we’re really trying to stay consistent with. We also try to upload a song as frequently as possible and making sure we bring visuals to it as well. Cause it’s one thing to listen to a song but another thing to see the artist and put a face behind the name.
Giannaris: And a lot of the time we’re on the same page. We kind of already have an idea of where we’re going with it. It’s more of the nit-picky stuff that we argue about.
Courtnall: Also when I get really get tapped into a song these guys really let me run with it. When we started off I feel like there was more clashing but now we’re really honing in on a specific sound. Like all our heads are in the same place.
Farrell: What has surprised you most about being independent artists?
Courtnall: Just the amount of work that you need to put in aside from the music. I swear we spent like a year and a half just only focused on music and just working on it everyday. And halfway through this entire process we realized we needed to work on marketing and that we needed to focus on the entire business side. So that’s been the biggest learning curve and thankfully we have our friend/manager Shanahan. He literally carries the team and you never see him but he’s putting in all the work behind the scenes.
Farrell: What do you hope to achieve in your music career?
Levine: I guess everyone’s dream when they make music is to you know make it big in LA or something like that. But I guess ours would just be to make a living off of it and make a living off our music. That would just be the main end goal.
Courtnall: Man, I was gonna say I wanna tour the world and shit. I wanna have like sold out dates across North America.
Interview edited for length and clarity