@LoganMashups – “Another Lonely Castle”
Artists: Adam Lambert & Halsey
In the nine months since reactivating his YouTube channel, 17 year-old mashup artist, Logan has earned a growing following of 12,600+ subscribers and nearly half a million views on just one of his mashups. Logan’s mashup between Justin Bieber’s “What Do You Mean?” and Adam Lambert’s “Ghost Town” caught our attention on Twitter last month when it almost instantly went viral. The artist, known to his followers as @LoganMashups, has a long history of creating mashups, but it was the combo of Tove Lo’s “Talking Body” and Adam’s “Ghost Town” that brought Logan into the spotlight. Adam had stumbled across the mix and tweeted it to his 2.5 million Twitter followers. Warner Brothers Records noticed the tweet and what would follow nobody expected. We recently sat down to talk with Logan about what makes a great mashup, how he feels about his sudden fame, and what it’s like growing up gay in small town Kansas.
Hey Logan! Thanks for taking time out to chat with us! So tell us how you got interested in music mashups.
I’ve been listening to mashups since the beginning of 2011. For two years all I did was casually listen to mashups slightly obsessing over certain mashup artists such as Raheem D and SmadaLeinad. In 2013 I started to get my own ideas for mashups. I found a tutorial to make mashups on a program called Audacity, it had to be good since the tutorial was made by my favorite mashup artist, Raheem D. After a month of experimenting with the software and following the tips he provided, on June 1st I posted my first mashup.
Who are some of your musical influences?
There are a few artists and mashup DJs that have influenced me. The first person who had a strong impact on me was Lady Gaga. Ever since the start of her career, every single thing she has done shaped me into the person I am today. Without her, I would’ve never come across mashups to begin with since she was the first artist I searched for in the mashup realm.
Another artist that has recently influenced me is Troye Sivan. Everything he is doing right now is what I wish would’ve happened years ago when I was extremely insecure about my sexuality. The way he is currently portraying a gay relationship through his “Blue Neighborhood” trilogy of music videos is not only something I can finally relate to, but is also heartbreaking to watch. I love using both of these artists in my mashups since they’re both so close to my heart.
Raheem D and SmadaLeinad are the two strongest influences on me with mashups, since they were the first two people I came across. Even today, they blow my mind with what they do, and I’m so glad that I came across their channels. Without them, LoganMashups wouldn’t exist!
So you mentioned feeling insecure about your sexuality in the past. What’s it like growing up gay in the middle of America’s heartland?
I haven’t had a single negative reaction to my sexuality thus far, which sounds really surprising considering I’m in Kansas. Every so often, I still feel lonely and isolated in my town as one of the few gay kids, but just this year alone I’ve found so many other LGBT teens within my school. It’s crazy just how many of us there are once you start to freely talk about it!
The town I live in only has about 3,000 people in it. When I was younger, it didn’t seem very LGBT friendly at all. When I first realized that I was attracted to males, I didn’t even think of it that much. I genuinely thought that all guys thought about other guys like that, it was a normal thing. I only realized that I was gay during my 8th grade year, and that was a really dark year for me. Somehow, I came out to my best friend right at the end of the year when I was at my lowest point. I just spat it out after holding it in for so long and hating myself because of it. It was the scariest thing I had ever done, but that wasn’t the end of it. My mom noticed how my emotions were getting the best of me, and she knew exactly what was going on. I cried my eyes out to her, not even muttering the words “I’m Gay” because I couldn’t handle it. She accepted me, and her love has been unconditional since then. It wasn’t even a big deal to her, or any of my family. Growing up with such supportive family and friends is the main reason I’m as confident as I am today. Now, I can tell anyone who is curious that I am gay. I can say those words that I couldn’t even think about only a few years ago.
What advice would you share with someone that is discovering who they are?
Discovering yourself can be a very long and tedious process. Two years ago, I couldn’t even mutter the words “I’m gay” to myself without choking up. The most important thing I think everyone should know about discovering their true selves is that it will take time. There isn’t a time limit to how long it will take, and it’s important to take however much time you need. Even I’m still becoming comfortable with who I am. It’s also key to talk to someone about who you think you are. You’re not always going to have the answers, and at some point, you’re going to have to talk to someone about all the thoughts running through your head. Whether it be your parents, your best friend, or anyone else. I know from experience that keeping things to yourself only leads to an emotional breakdown. There really isn’t a wrong way to discover yourself. What is commonly said is true: it really does get better. That may also take some time, but it will be well worth it. Right now, times may be tough, but the future will always look bright if you keep your spirits up.
That’s great, Logan. I’m sure music helps also. Is being a DJ or musician a career ambition for you?
Any career that involves music is of strong interest to me. Ever since I was a kid, music has been like a secret paradise for me where I can escape all of my real world problems. To be able to take my strong love for music, and form it into an everyday job is a dream of mine. With my mashups, it’s like an early stepping stone to something greater. As much as I love making mashups, I want to start exploring and doing more things with music, possibly even making my own music.
Where do you get the ideas for your mashups?
There are so many ways that I get ideas for mashups. Sometimes, when I listen to a song for the first time, my mind instantly connects it to a song that sounds very similar to it. An example of that would be Katy Perry’s “Roar” and Sara Bareille’s “Brave”. Those two songs are almost identical, so it only makes sense to put them together. However, that method usually leads to the mashup being done by multiple artists. I try to make fresh, new mashups that haven’t been done before. The second way is by connecting songs that are similar in key and speed. This is usually the way I try and make my mashups now. There are some that I just randomly think up in my mind and act on. Those always end up being the best!
Warner Brothers Records recently tweeted your mashup of “Ghost Town” and “What Do You Mean?”, what was that experience like?
Being noticed by Warner was a luck of the draw for me. It started off a few months prior when I tweeted a mashup between Adam Lambert’s “Ghost Town” and Tove Lo’s “Talking Body”. I made it just like any of my other creations, and didn’t expect much of it. However, just a few weeks ago, I found out that not only did Adam tweet out that mashup, but his label did as well. I was excited, and tweeted how awesome it was that both of them noticed it. What happened next was really unexpected. Warner tweeted me and wanted to contact me! After talking to them, I was asked to make another mashup using Adam’s single. I mashed it with “What Do You Mean?” by Justin Bieber, and they loved it. The moment I posted it, the label and Adam promoted it on a few social media platforms, including Twitter and Facebook, and it got over 8,000 views on its first day. Adam even left a comment on YouTube! The entire experience was something brand new to me, and I never in a million years expected a label to take interest in a small mashup artist like myself. I’m ecstatic for any future mashups I may be making for them.
Well, we are hoping for more collaborations! Do you have a favorite mashup of yours? Of others?
It’s hard for me to choose just one mashup I’ve made over the two years as my favorite. However, there is one I made in the first few months of starting that I just adore. It’s not currently on my channel, but it does exist on YouTube. It’s a mashup between Katy Perry’s “Unconditionally” and Demi Lovato’s version of “Let It Go” from Frozen. This was the first mashup I’ve made in the style where it features both vocals, and it was a roaring success. Both songs fit together smoothly, and both have a very wintery vibe to them. It was like they were meant to be mashed together! Another recent favorite is Jason Derulo’s “Cheyenne” and “Same Old Love” by Selena Gomez. (Listen to Same Old Cheyenne)
There are a handful of mashups that I love by other artists. One Direction’s “Live While We’re Young” and Justin Bieber’s “Beauty And A Beat” by Raheem D was one of the first few that I officially became obsessed with. A few more of my favorites worth mentioning would be oneboredjeu’s mashup of Marina & The Diamonds “Lies” and Tove Lo’s “Talking Body”, Andy Macaulay’s mashup of Lana Del Rey’s “Young and Beautiful” and FKA Twigs’ “Pendulum”, and most recently, Gingergreen’s mashup of Troye Sivan’s “Bite” and Miley Cyrus’ “Wrecking Ball”.
What can Arts Out Loud do for you and other young creative people to help further your education and career goals?
Arts Out Loud is a great organization that can do so much for creative youth like myself. I believe there is one thing that not just us, but everyone should receive, and that is support. There are way too many LGBT individuals who are limited to what they can do just because of the lack of support in their lives. I’m extremely lucky to not only have a family who accepts me for who I am, but shows 100% support in everything that I do. I know not everyone can have such an easy life, and that’s where Arts Out Loud comes in. With this program, you can be provided with the right resources and support to where you can express your creativity instead of hiding it. Since I live in a small town in Kansas, it’s hard for me to speak out and have my voice be heard. With Arts Out Loud, I know I’ll be heard by professionals. That’s something I never even dreamed of happening. If I, some kid in the middle of nowhere, can succeed in a hobby that I’m passionate about, then I think anyone can.