Following up his single “Do We Need to Go Out?”, singer/songwriter/producer & multi-instrumentalist Dylan Dunlap unveiled his new single “Here For Me” on July 12th.
Co-written with Ben Zelico and Kirk Adolph & produced by Ben Zelico, the new single touches on Dunlap’s relationship with his father.
With this new single, Dunlap offers a personal record by painting his vulnerability through timeless melodies and heartfelt lyrics.
The Los Angeles-based artist studied at the prestigious Berklee College of Music where he was discovered. After his experience at NBC’s hit show The Voice, Dunlap toured in Europe and across America, and got the opportunity to open for OneRepublic.
Dunlap is also an advocate for mental illness. He received the ‘Fighting Stigma Rising Star’ award from the National Alliance on Mental Illness and has partnered with many organizations, including the Global Citizen, Autism Rocks and many more.
The 23 year old artist has upcoming shows around the US, click here for more details.
“Here For Me” is now available on major streaming platforms.
Introduce yourself - What's your story?
Hi! My name is Dylan Dunlap. I'm born and raised in Los Angeles. Taught myself piano at the age of 5 and started singing when I went to Berklee College of Music. It was then that I decided I didn't want to be a film composer anymore. Instead, I wanted to pursue songwriting and becoming an artist. I'm 23 now, so I've been doing that ever since! I've worked really hard for opportunities to be on The Voice, tour throughout the world, and open for OneRepublic.
"Here For Me" is your latest single. What's the story behind this song?
The way I interpret 'Here For Me' is that it's about my dad. I had a really difficult time dealing with him leaving his life in LA to start something new. That's the beauty of music though. It's subjective, which means that I can write a song about the most important person to me, but the listener's able to take whatever they want and/or need from it.
You worked with Ben Zelico and Kirk Adolph on this single. When did you start working on it? Could you describe us the songwriting/production process?
The three of us finished writing HFM in Big Bear last Fall. The music came such a long way though. I'm pretty sure 4 or 5 different songs were written to get to where it is now and I absolutely loved the entire process. Definitely took a lot of patience.
What did you feel when writing this song?
I felt relieved. Music is therapy and I'm so thankful to have the privilege of singing about my life for a living.
What can you tell us about the upcoming video for "Here For Me"?
'Here For Me' was created by my good friends, Kristen Hahn & Tim Toda, over at YouTube Space LA. We really think it captures the 'don't take yourself too seriously as an artist' mentality, but still manages to paint a picture of loneliness.
What message do you want to convey through your art?
I have two messages that I try to tell myself every morning. Haha emphasis on 'try'. Some days will be better than others. 1) It's okay to not be okay. 2) I have no idea what I'm doing. I think we put too much pressure on ourselves to succeed in the eyes of others and have our lives completely figured out as soon as possible, but the truth is that sometimes none of this makes sense. All I want to do is strive to work as hard as I possibly can and pursue happiness throughout that. There's so much about my life and mental struggles that I don't have control over, but there's also so many that I do. Awareness is everything to me. Literally as I'm typing these answers out for you at LAX, I'm restarting my day. That part is a choice.
What led you to raise awareness on mental illness?
I want to raise awareness about mental illnesses because I struggle with mental illnesses. That being said, I don't want to make this specifically about me. I genuinely just want to reach out to the person in the back of the room that has never felt more alone in his/her life and tell them: I see you. I hear you. It's okay.
What message would you give to anyone suffering from any kind of mental illness?
It's okay to ask for help. Simple as that. I was raised in a very toxic environment at my dad's that made me feel like men shouldn't cry and therapy/medication is a joke. What an amazing responsibility it is to be an adult and make your own decisions. The only person's beliefs that I can change are my own.
In your opinion, what would make the world a better place?
Oh man! What a loaded question. Off the top of my head, I think we can all work on listening instead of being so quick to give advice. Some people just want to feel heard.
What biggest lessons have you learned as a human being and as an artist so far?
Hm. I guess I'd say that I've learned to be present more. I tend to bury myself in my work, which I get from my father. The biggest lesson that I'm still working on to this day (and I hope I never stop working on) is that we will never get this time back. As an artist... Taking pride in my work. That's the only thing that matters at the end of the day.
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