Pop-punk has been making a major resurgence in the scene the past few years, both with older bands coming back and newer artists making a name for themselves. One such artist is Cameron Alexander. His vocals are melodic, and there is a balance with the pop-influenced hooks and the raw energy associated with punk. The rising star just released his latest single, "Time to Break Up", which is an irresistibly catchy anthem. We recently had the chance to chat with Cameron about his inspirations, creative process, who he claims to be the Godfather of pop-punk, and more.
MSM: Hi Cameron! Thanks for chatting with me! First off, how did you get started? What first ignited your passion for music?
CAMERON: I’ve been into music pretty much my whole life. I started taking piano lessons in second grade and I loved it, but eventually got bored with it. I picked up guitar and started taking some lessons when I was around 10. This was also around the time I was discovering rock bands like Green Day and The All-American Rejects. It was the first time I had felt a real connection to the music and the musicians, and had something I could identify with. And once I started figuring out how to play some of their songs, I was completely addicted.
MSM: You play every instrument used in your songs, which I’m sure provides a bit of freedom, but have you thought about collaborating with other artists? If so, what would your dream collab be?
CAMERON: I’ve thought a lot about collaborating with other artists, and I’d be pumped to work with anyone and see what happens. Specifically though, my dream collab is to work with Travis Barker. blink-182 is one of the biggest reasons I do this, and along with inspiring a lot of my sound, Travis has influenced the way I play drums monumentally. With the way he’s been working with so many different artists small and big, he’s basically the Godfather of pop-punk at this point, so I’d jump at the chance to collab with him in any way.
MSM: How do you approach the songwriting process, and where do you draw inspiration from?
CAMERON: I mainly draw inspiration from experiences in my own life and the lessons I try to take from them. Something I love about songwriting is your message doesn’t necessarily have to be an official opinion/view that’s etched in stone forever. Songs encapsulate feelings, so as long as I’m truthfully describing the way I feel about different experiences in life, I’m giving people something they can confide in. Our feelings don’t have to be right and certainly aren’t a lot of the time, but having them validated is important and all a part of the process of living, and I think it’s one of the biggest reasons people listen to music, or consume any art for that matter.
MSM: You just released your latest single, “Time to Break Up”. What can you tell us about the creative process for this one?
CAMERON: The process for this song happened differently than a lot of my songs usually go. In the past, I would write every single lyric, guitar part, section change, harmony, etc. outside of the studio, and then go record it all with my producer Liam Muckala. However this time we decided we were gonna get in the studio together with nothing planned and just to see what would happen. Coincidentally, I had a relationship end the night before, and it didn’t end as peacefully as I would have liked it to. So, basically, I got to Liam’s studio in the morning and trauma-dumped everything that had happened the night before, and then showed him a new guitar riff I had recently came up with. It all flowed naturally from there and now you have Time to Break Up!
MSM: “Time to Break Up” looks like it was a fun music video to create! Do you have any behind-the-scenes stories about the experience?
CAMERON: The car in the video is a 1971 Ford Gran Torino that belongs to my dad. It being a 52 year old car, it actually broke down a few days before the shoot. My dad had to order a few new parts and get some of his mechanic friends to work overtime to get it running again, and it was kind of a miracle that they got it running the day before the shoot. Where we shot the footage with the car is actually in a small town in Louisiana where my dad grew up, but the footage of me playing was at a house show event in Nashville that me and my friends put on through our music collective we started called Alpha Cool Guy. It’s a play on fraternities where we put on music events with tons of different artists for the college music scene, and about 700 people showed up. It was an awesome show and the first time I played "Time to Break Up" live.
MSM: Who are your favorite artists, and how do you feel that they have helped to shape your sound?
CAMERON: The two artists that have influenced me the most is blink-182 and All Time Low. blink has shaped many different parts of my musical journey, with the way they make fun, energetic music that's not afraid to get serious as hell or absolutely ridiculous. All Time Low inspires a lot of my songwriting, and I think Alex Gaskarth is one of the best lyric writers in pop-punk history. Some of my other favorite artists are The Story So Far, Neck Deep, Fall Out Boy, and KennyHoopla.
MSM: Do you have any artists or bands that you’d recommend that people may not have heard of?
CAMERON: I’ve been jamming Parker Cannon’s side project “No Pressure” everyday for the past year, although I’m sure most hardcore pop-punk fans have heard of them. Some other bands people should check out are Belmont, Action/Adventure, Koyo, and KidPunk.
MSM: What are your goals for your music career? Where do you see yourself in five years?
CAMERON: My goal is to do what I’m doing now on a larger and larger scale. I’d love to connect with people more in person via live shows, since I think it’s the best way to experience my music, and playing live is probably my favorite thing to do on earth. So, I’d love to start touring and releasing as much music as possible for people to vibe with. Hopefully, in 5 years I have an album or two out and I’m touring with any of the bands I’ve previously mentioned.
MSM: Lastly, what would you say to any potential new fans about why they should check out your music?
CAMERON: I’d say that there’s no point of going on this journey without meaning something to the people that listen to my music. Making music does a lot for me, but I don’t want to do it just for me. How I spoke earlier on giving people songs to confide in, I want to create a movement of people that feel like they’re not alone in the world with their feelings when they listen to my music. I think it’s really easy to get caught in an echo chamber in your head where you don’t think other people are struggling the way you are, when in reality we’re all struggling with something. So, if I can create something that can inspire people to face those struggles in any way they see fit, even just screaming along to a song in their car to forget about everything for one minute, then I can sleep somewhat soundly at night.