Brick Township, NJ Pop Punk act The Ones You Forgot have the honor of being our #WeeklyDiscovery for this week.
The Ones You Forgot is a pop rock band from Brick, NJ that was formed in 2014 after long-time friends and guitarists Ferdinand Benauro and Matt Thompson noticed remarkable covers on Instagram from vocalist Jenna Bruno
Could you introduce yourself and what you do in the band and give a quick background on the band?
My name’s Jenna and I sing. I’m Ferd and I play guitar. I’m Matt and I also play guitar. My name is Justin and I play drums. I’m Lance and I play bass. We are a pop rock band out of New Jersey and have been playing together for 4 years now.
Your sophomore EP “Too Afraid To Stay” came out in late June. What excitement has birthed/changed from this EP?
Jenna: We have held onto these songs for a while, and they all mean so much to us. To finally have them out in the world is really an incredible feeling!
Justin: It was the first EP that I helped write and record with the band since I joined, so it was a great accomplishment for me. I’ve never felt a sensation of happiness like this before.
Matt: We were very excited to have received the kind of feedback that we did. It felt good to finally have some new music out, have some of the songs debut on some cool platforms and be shared on playlists. Definitely an exciting first for the band!
Lance: This EP contains my favorite music we have ever written. It was great to have fresh music to show people after almost 3 years of only having 1 other EP and single out. It was exciting seeing the new fans that we gained through ‘Too Afraid to Say.’
Ferd: We poured our hearts out into this EP. We’re just excited that it’s finally out and to play new songs for some old and new faces.
With all the different musical tastes that band members typically bring as influences, do you feel that helps bring a lot to the table when it comes to song writing or does it make it difficult because everyone wants to go in different directions?
Jenna: In our experience, I think it has worked to our advantage!
Justin: I feel the diversity in all of our taste in music definitely brings a lot to the table when it comes to writing. Although we all primarily listen to different music, we appreciate everything, and I believe that’s what helps us figure out what will sound best for us as a band when it comes to the writing process.
Ferd: The different music tastes definitely bring a lot to the table. It’s what helps us develop our sound.
Matt: It actually helps us more than it sets us back. Having the different influences coming together gives us more variety rather than trapping ourselves into a box of one specific sound while writing.
Lance: At times our conflicting music tastes can make an impact in our writing decisions, but for the most part we are usually all able to easily agree on something altogether. We all like heavier music and we all like poppier music, some more than others. I think this makes for a good blend when writing our songs.
What happens when you take such confessional lyrics out of your songwriting space and put them out into the world? Are you ever worried about being misunderstood?
Jenna: For me, showing the world the lyrics of ‘Too Afraid To Say’ was a little scary, but also incredibly cathartic. The name is so incredibly fitting to how I felt about every situation within every song (in their own way, of course). There definitely is a feeling in the back of mind that the words may be misunderstood, but at the same time, one of my favorite things about music itself is that it can be interpreted in so many different ways.
What do you think it is that holds people back from speaking out in their lyrical content?
Jenna: Adding to what I said in the last question, writing lyrics is a very personal experience. It can be scary opening up and showcasing your emotions, especially if you’re someone who is rather shy to begin with or hides how they are feeling. I’m sure there are many reasons why someone may hold back their lyrics, but I feel a big portion of it has to do with the vulnerability of it all.
Matt: Maybe it’s the fear of judgement or the fear of being vulnerable. When you pour your entire heart out into a song it’s getting put out there and it might not be the most comforting feeling.
You’re from Brick, NJ right? What’s the music scene there like?
Jenna: Brick itself does not have many places to play, but surrounding towns in NJ have great music scenes! There are so many talented artists from this area and it’s really cool to be able to share the stage with them. My favorite place to play and attend shows is definitely in Asbury Park.
Justin: We have some seriously talented musicians and bands not only in Brick, but in our County, and state alone. It’s cool to see so many bands that befriend, work hard, and support one another in the music scene.
Ferd: We have a pretty friendly, supportive and driven scene here!
Matt: The town itself doesn’t really have a huge scene but New Jersey as a whole has always had a bad ass scene. So many crazy talented musicians have come from jersey there’s a lot of talented bands here so I would say our scene is doing well!
You guys are smack dab between Philly & NYC. Being 90 minutes from both cities, do you feel that the opportunities to grow your music are more prevalent?
Jenna: Both cities are hubs for music and being right in between both is definitely great for any type of artistic/creative career. I would like to move closer to NYC one day!
Justin: Absolutely. I’m very grateful to be close enough to both major cities. Show playing and networking has been a great experience so far!
Matt: It’s definitely more convenient to be stationed that way so we can get to both cities fairly quick and easy!
Lance: Being right in the middle of NYC and Philly is definitely a prime location. Awesome shows are constantly rolling through those two cities, and the music scenes there are thriving. They’re certainly great places for any band around here to try and break into and build a following.
How does creativity inform or alter your happiness?
Jenna: It lies on both ends of the spectrum for me. I absolutely love creating, but at the same time, this is where I doubt myself the most. At the end of the day though, being able to see my work, especially music, is really a feeling like no other.
Matt: Some of my happiest moments in life have been creating these songs with 4 of my best friends. Hearing these things we created come to life and hearing it through headphones, computer speakers, radios is so sick and made me really happy!
Lance: Creativity is something to me that is a facilitator for happiness. Being able to put your thoughts and ideas into a product that people will actively listen to is absolutely unreal.
A lot of people don’t understand the hard work that goes into being in a band. Explain to us some of the setbacks that comes with being in a band that you wish others understood better.
Matt: There’s a lot of work, hustle and money that goes into keeping a band going. Being in an band is very financially demanding and time demanding. Having to balance school, work, home life and band time can get tough especially for bands who tour often.
Lance: I think that the biggest setbacks that come with being in a band are expenses and also dealing with rejection. Putting all this work and money into a something just to have people trash it or not even give it the light of day is upsetting, but its always gonna be there. Its just something you gotta push past and make yourself better.
We’re big on indie artists at DigiSpun. Any hidden gems you’ve been listening to lately?
Jenna: Taylor Janzen!
Matt: Not really indie but I’ve been listening to the new Bearings album that just came out that I really like it’s called Blue In The Dark.
What’s next for you guys? What does the future hold for The Ones You Forgot?
We’re in the process of making another music video for another song off Too Afraid To Say and recently started writing new material. Also in the process of planning a tour down South this coming Winter. We just want to keep grinding, playing shows, and inspiring others from the music we create and love to play! This is all just the beginning of TOYF. Thanks so much for having us!
Their latest EP, Too Afraid To Say is available now on all streaming platforms.