In our follow-up interview with Forrest Nolan, the young pop talent shares his thoughts on his You Make Me Feel Alright debut EP, his favorite ice-cream flavor and being on tour with Gracie Abrams.
In September, we were won over by Forrest Nolan’s sincere approach to songwriting and talented vocal chops.
The young indie singer-songwriter crafted his catchy hit, ‘Summer Vibe’, to great fan feedback and since then he’s been hard at work releasing his debut EP as well as touring alongside talented musician Gracie Abrams.
Titled You Make Me Feel Alright, the EP features seven original songs by Nolan. To celebrate this momentous occasion, we caught up with the singer once more to tell us more about the record.
AsiaLive365: Hey Forrest! Since we last spoke, you were set to release You Make Me Feel Alright. Now that it’s out, how does it feel?
Forrest Nolan: I feel alright. Maybe more than alright. It’s been a super rewarding experience getting to hear feedback from people that listened to my record. Very energizing and exciting!
AL365: The EP features seven original songs. Tell us more about the record.
FN: The title track is called ‘You Make Me Feel Alright’, and actually that is a song I wrote from the beginning of this relationship that I was in. The relationship ended up in heartbreak, so I ended up writing the rest of the songs after that.
The whole thing kinda journals this whole experience, and it ends with a song that is hopeful. Asking and hoping that maybe after all of this, we can still be friends. So, You Make Me Feel Alright reflects all those different emotions that the relationship encompasses in. It’s a lot to explore with only seven songs, but hopefully people can get the idea.
AL365: Prior to the release of the EP, you’ve put out two songs – ‘MIA’ and ‘and it sounds like (ice-cream)’. What can you tell us about these tracks, and are all the songs related to one person?
FN: Artistically, it’s all related to one person. In reality, the song ‘MIA’ is about being cheated on, but that’s a song I wrote with a friend who actually was cheated on. So luckily, that was not my lived experience. My friend and I would have fun with the idea rather than making something sad. We went for something upbeat, making fun of the situation, so he’s really strong for that.
For ‘and it sounds like (ice-cream)’, I was trying to make a song that felt like it came from an indie movie from the early 2000s. I don’t see many of those movies, just basing it off the trailers. It’s energy and innocence.
AL365: Now that the EP is out, my favorite songs are the title track and ‘no name #1’.
FN: Woah, thank you for checking it out! Yeah, the latter song in particular, I was trying to make the production sound like Bon Iver and James Blake as a reference to this person I was working with on the project. That person is a huge fan of those artists, so I kinda wanted to make something that person would be able to listen to.
AL365: What is the most underrated track in the EP?
FN: That’s a cool question. I think the title track might be my favorite one, so I just hope people hear that one. I hope they listen to the whole song because it has a slow beginning but it takes a minute to actually drop. I know how short people’s attention spans are so I wouldn’t be surprised a lot of people would hear the first 10 seconds and then just skip to the next one.
AL365: You mentioned Bon Iver and James Blake as influences. Were there any other artists you were listening to while recording this EP?
FN: I think I was just getting into Drake. I like pop music in general. Taylor Swift, Bruno Mars, just the classics I missed out growing up because I wasn’t really into radio when I was younger. I was into underground music and now I’m the opposite way around.
AL365: Seeing as you are a romantic, what movies would you suggest?
FN: My favorite movies are not very romantic. One of them kinda is, but I don’t even like that movie because of the romance. It’s called Phantom Thread by Paul Thomas Anderson. I really like that movie not because of the relationship between the two characters but the relationship between the main character and his mother who passed away. Yeah, I don’t know, that movie is not reminiscent of any of this.
My other favorite movie is Avengers: Endgame. Also not very romantic.
AL365: Another fun question. Favorite flavor of ice-cream?
FN: Easily cookies n’ cream. Honorable mention is coffee. Actually, maybe the best ice-cream you can ever get is salted caramel from Bi-Rite in San Francisco. If you are ever there, get the salted caramel. It’s really good.
AL365: What would you new listeners who have just discovered your music?
FN: I would say just listen to whatever is the most popular (laughs). Stick around because the music is only gonna get better from here!
AL365: Looking back this year, any highlights you wanna share?
FN: Gosh, I mean this year is when I started releasing music! So, so much has happened, it’s totally crazy. From getting warm reception from TikTok to releasing my debut EP.
I think another huge highlight was touring with Gracie Abrams, visiting different parts of the United States to play for people. Moving to LA was another highlight. And of course, there’s pandemic amid all of it, it’s been pretty crazy.
AL365: You mentioned supporting Gracie Abrams on tour. I saw on your Instagram how you mother surprised you at one of your gigs. That was really sweet.
FN: That was a really special moment. It happened at my hometown.
AL365: How was it like meeting Gracie Abrams?
FN: That was so cool. I wasn’t expecting anyone at all to be as sweet as she is. She is a very compassionate person and insanely talented which is really special, so she’s a good one.
AL365: What’s next for Forrest Nolan?
FN: We’re just gonna make new music. I’m kinda starting from scratch, making hopefully what would be the best music I’ve made yet. So stay tuned, at least for a few months. Then, once the new music comes out, you can leave if you don’t like it.
AL365: Wanna say something to all your fans in Asia?
FN: Well if they’re already fans, I would say thank you so, so much for supporting my music. It’s totally insane to know there are people listening across the entire world, and thank you for the Instagram DMs. I’m so, so grateful to have your support.
AL365: Thank you so much, Forrest! It’s great talking to you again. Take care!
FN: Nicky, it was so fun getting to talk to you again. Thank you, take care.
Photo credit: Christopher Nolan