While many artists dream of a record deal, Jordan Witzigreuter, an electro-pop singer/songwriter who performs as The Ready Set, recently inked his third one. It seems that even when he wants to strike out on his own, a record label pops up and grabs him. “I’m not sure why I keep getting signed and other acts don’t,” he muses. “Maybe it’s because I’ve been working hard at it for a long, long time.”
Indeed, Witzigreuter began his affair with music when he was just a kid, setting up shop in his parent’s basement. At 20 years of age he signed with (Fall Out Boy) Pete Wentz’s Decaydance/Sire Records. Since then he has released four studio albums, four EPs and seven singles via Decaydance/Sire, Razor & Tie and, now, Hopeless Records.
Why such a circuitous route? “I needed to find myself as an artist,” he explains. “So I tried different paths to discover the real me.” His earlier deals presented him as a singles-oriented popstar. And with his image it’s easy to see why. “But,” he recounts, “I didn’t feel like I was progressing as an artist. I was limited and I wanted to say and do more.”
“I’m not sure why I keep getting signed and other acts don’t.”
Consequently, Witzigreuter burned out and started a side project to fulfill his artistic cravings. “That helped a lot,” he reveals. “I started writing from a different perspective and reevaluated everything. In the process I learned a lot about writing, recording and production. It felt like I was reinventing myself and that excited me.”
Initially, the artist intended to release his new material independently. “I did everything on the latest record. I played almost every instrument, produced it myself, and even designed the artwork and merchandise. I was finally in control,” he relates, “and that felt good.”
The biggest difference is that he’s releasing a full album and not worrying about singles. “All my other deals focused on singles,” he notes. “But, I wanted to create a body of work that was a complete thought–– something that would finally represent me.”
Helping him do that is Hopeless Records who, according to Witzigreuter, is “more album oriented” than his other labels. The LP, I Will Be Nothing Without Your Love, is being supported by a nationwide tour. “I really hope this is a fresh start,” he says. “I’m serious...because, this time, it’s way more personal."
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