As a music theorist and former classical musician, Unbound Joy, aka Chris Bonanni, has become enamored with what is typically seen as the other side of the spectrum in the classical music world-pop music. In pursuit of writing a perfect pop song, Unbound Joy returns with his new album ‘Brain Rotations,’, out now. After releasing 42 songs last year, he starts off 2020 with his new single, ‘Fashionable’.
Welcome to Positive Publicity! To start off, please tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Chris Bonanni. I’ve been making music under the name “Unbound Joy” since 2016. I’ve been an introvert for the majority of my life and I feel like I’ve missed out on a lot of beautiful things because of my own internal fear. I have been the anxious person who dreads vulnerability. Music is what pulled me out of that. Making music showcases a part of my personality that I feel like I’ve hid from the world my whole life. The name “unbound joy” comes from a Jim Morrison interview. He is one of my earliest inspirations, he’s made me feel confident.
I actually work at an opera full-time, so I am often around classical music! I am curious to learn more about your experience with classical music – what do you play? Which composer(s) do you resonate with?
I studied classical voice for a while. I was kind of funneled into that direction and just viewed it as good musical training. I guess I got a bit wrapped up considering I went to college for it. In my senior recital I sung Schumann’s “Dichterliebe”. Everything about that piece inspires me a lot. Singing art songs/opera is fun but it wasn’t ever truly my dream. Erik Satie and Schumann initially come to mind, but it’s hard to pick. But I like the way composers during the Romantic era would let the piano be equally as important as the voice in voice and piano works, I try to do some of that sort of thing in my own music now.
For you personally, what purpose does your music serve? To tell a story? A creative outlet?
I hope that my music makes people feel less alone. That’s probably a bad answer, but it’s truly that simple. I feel alone a lot and I’m reaching out because I know that I’m not. I try to put my truth out there to be seen by everyone. Ultimately, I don’t think I can stop making songs and I’m just trying to share everything I make with the world.
Not a bad answer at all! It’s your truth. Tell us about ‘Fashionable’, and about your upcoming album.
‘Fashionable’ is featured on Brain Rotations, my latest project which was released on March 25th. I wanted to write a really upbeat pop song that was just really stimulating, like a drug basically. I care a lot about accessibility and pop music happens to be the most popular. When I first started making music I wanted to make more artsy stuff just to show off, but now I’m more interested in connecting with others. It’s hard to say when my next release is coming, but I put out music as often as I possibly can. I try to be like BONES in that sense – another huge inspiration for me. He’s the king of that.
I’ve been asking this final question in recent interviews – during this time of social-distancing, how have you been doing? How have you bee spending/managing your time?
This whole situation is bizarre and a bit demoralizing I’ll admit. But I mostly spend my time the same as I always have, or at least try to. Lately I’ve been making a short song every night. I think I’ve got a few worthy ones so far. Who knows, I’ll probably release all of them. I like imperfection.