In this world of so many musicians, there are only a few who has an incredible way of justifying their emotions through an instrument. We found one such instrument player whose guitar playing will amaze you. Today, on Artist Centerstage, we are talking about a beautiful and talented guitar player, and her name is“Michelle Julyan”.
Let’s find out, how MJ fell in love with the world of music, and how her journey into music began!
- Introduce yourself to our audience, what genre of music do you consider your work to be?
I’m MJ(Michelle Julyan), guitar player originally from Buffalo, NY and I am currently living in Raleigh, NC. I lived and gigged in Sothern, CA and the DC area throughout times in the past. I run and own a divorce and family law firm in Raleigh, NC and am one of a very few transgendered domestic attorneys in the state. Simply put, I’m a bit of an alien.
While my playing is not limited to any particular style or genre, I often use the phrase “Groove Metal” to best describe my eclectic style. That is a rock-based style that includes a “groovy” edge. However, I love studying every style and genre and incorporating these techniques into my playing. Additionally, I’m a bit of a music theory nerd and am always up for music gear chats with other musicians.
- What and who were your early passions and influences, What inspires you to make music?
My early passion influences were an eclectic mix of artists that cover many different genres. Growing up, I studied jazz guitar learning many of the jazz standards from the “Real Book.” In my teens, I was fortunate to have the opportunity to study with guitar extraordinaire, Tony Scozarro, a former graduate of Musician’s Institute (formerly “Guitar Institute”) in Southern, CA. Mr. Scozarro introduced me to a whole different world of techniques and was instrumental in bringing my playing to an entirely different level.
My inspiration in making music comes from performing with and for others. There’s nothing better than connecting with an audience during a live music performance. It’s synergistic, therapeutic and euphoric for me all at the same time.
- Tell us about that one memorable performance and favorite venue which you still wish to happen again?
While attending law school in Southern, CA I had a chance to play a large venue at a moment’s notice. I believe we played for close to 10,000 people that night and the energy was amazing.
- Any funny story of a mess up during your performance where you handled that situation like nothing happened?
I still remember my first time on stage wearing 5-inch platform shoes. Trying to get adjusted to working for my pedalboard, including my wah pedal was a bit of challenge not to mention a few close calls of nearly falling over from tripping on stage cables. Fun times!
- If you could collaborate with any musicians(dead/alive), who would you collaborate with and why?
In terms of deceased musicians, it would with a doubt be Prince. He was so naturally gifted as a musician and a writer, but he was also so instrumental and courageous in performing as himself, especially during his early days when it was not socially acceptable to be different. He was “organically” different like none other.
In terms of living musicians, it would certainly be Stevie Wonder. Stevie is a musical genius.
- Any Tips to keep the balance between professional and music life?
I think musicians balancing a professional life with a music life need to set time aside each day where they can focus on music and practice without interruption. For me, that entails escaping to the music room and shutting my phone off (if need be) to ensure that I stay on track with accomplishing my music goals and/or practice schedule.
- What has been your biggest challenge as a Musician? Have you been able to overcome that challenge? If so, how?
My greatest challenge as musician has been balancing my professional life as a divorce and family law attorney and maintain my practice schedule as a musician. Since I run and operate my own law firm, things can get hectic at a moment’s notice, especially in litigation. As such, finding great support staff at my law firm has been an integral part of assisting with balancing my professional and music lives. I’ve learned to delegate and maintain a structured practice schedule.
- What Tools and techniques you use to improve your singing/instrumental playing?
I really like to run patterns, etc. each day as a warm-up and I tend to spend a lot of time writing and practicing over various backing tracks. Regular warm-up exercises are really important for guitar players in terms of maintaining and improving hand dexterity.
- What type of Gadgets and instruments do you use while practicing? And, Do you have any specific name of your instrument?
I often use my recording software to lay down rhythm and drum tracks so I can play over the top of them during practice routines.
- Would you like to share a testimonial for Guitaa? If Yes, Why do you love Guitaa?
Guitaa is a great resource for guitar players of every level. A must-have resource for every guitar player!
- What advice would you have for someone wanting to become an Artist?
Never give-up. Keep going. Ignore critics. Don’t allow others to control your destiny.
So, this was “Michelle Julyan” a.k.a “MJ”. Want to know how you can follow her on social media? Then, check out the links below: