By Nicholas Jason Lopez
Influenced by an eclectic mix of artists like The Jackson 5, The Temptations, Kurt Cobain and Ed Sheeran, Alamogordo, New Mexico-based alternative acoustic musician James Ethington III has used music as a way to battle anxiety and depression.
Listeners can get a sense of what he’s all about from his debut EP ‘Rheacycle,’ which dropped in June 2020.
The Music Bugle had the chance to talk with him about ‘Rheacycle’ and more.
Music Bugle – What inspired your single “Becca”?
James Ethington III – I had an idea for a film and Becca is a character in that film. She is a lifelong friend-turned-love interest for the main character. The song depicts the reunion between these two characters.
Music Bugle – What was it like making your debut EP ‘Rheacycle’?
James Ethington III – It was great! I’ve been waiting a long time to get in a studio and finally record something. I had a blast working with Eric Gubala as the producer and he made the process run very smoothly and easily.
Music Bugle – How would you describe Alamogordo, New Mexico to someone who has never been there before?
James Ethington III – I mean, it’s a little difficult to gas up Alamo. It’s hot and dry and there isn’t much to do here. Musically, I’d love to build an empire here, but there is no opportunity for that here. I must go conquer the rest of the world and come back and be somebody. Honestly, if you are Big City Joe, I’d tell you to not get your hopes up, but if you are looking for a quiet place to retire, it’s wonderful. In conclusion, I love my town, but still…
Music Bugle – What excites you the most about your musical style?
James Ethington III – The fact that I’m just me. If five people described my style or who I remind them of, you’ll mostly get five completely different answers or examples. I love that I don’t want to sound like nobody else. I’m inspired by others, yes, but I love sounding like James Ethington III. That excites me.
Music Bugle – Who are you listening to right now, music-wise?
James Ethington III – Right now, it’s a lot of Jackson 5, Dababy and 2 Live Crew.
Music Bugle – What has been your biggest challenge lately?
James Ethington III – Well, I would say Covid restrictions. I’d like to be able to consistently play live again.
Music Bugle – Where do you go when you need an escape?
James Ethington III – No place in particular, but sometimes, I do prefer to go off by myself and be alone, wherever that might be and think about things or play around on the guitar.
Music Bugle – What’s a quote that motivates you to keep doing what you do?
James Ethington III – Well, one of the last things my father said to me before he passed was, “Keep on believing,” so anytime I do feel like giving up and quitting, I think of that. I keep believing my goals are achievable. They may be far or it may take a lot of work, still, it’s achievable.
Music Bugle – What’s something you wish happened more in today’s music industry?
James Ethington III – Maybe more collabs. It might be kind of cool to hear some far-out collab, like Post Malone and Foo Fighters record or Common and Gary Clark Jr. featuring Kanye West, but the ‘College Dropout’ Kanye West.