Slim Dogis drummer & solo artist: Jason Moran’s diverse musical venture

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From getting his first drum kit on his ninth birthday, Jason Moran has come a long way and is excited to release a long-awaited EP along with original music with his band at Rowan University. Moran, a junior music industry technology major with a minor in entrepreneurship, has grown up with music his entire life. From playing at his local theater to creating his bands, Moran considers himself to be a drummer, along with a pianist, a songwriter, and an independent artist. 

“It all became drumming and the older I got, I began picking up piano. I began writing my music and now I’m at a point where I’m trying to do everything,” Moran said. “I’m in the technology field and the performing industry.”

Even though Moran has been a solo artist for a long time, he has had a few people that have got him to where he is today. At Rowan, he is part of a band called Slim Dogis, who performed at the Battle of the Bands last Saturday and made the top three. 

“We had a lot of fun, really cheering that we made the top three,” Moran said. “You don’t need to make number one. Making the top three, we were all hugging each other and running around, having a good time.”

Moran considers Slim Dogis to be a punk rock band but as an independent artist, growing up with Billy Joel and the Beatles, he mentions that he is also a pop and jazz musician. Slim Dogis was not Moran’s first band as when he was 14, he created one with his friends. He named the band CrossStreet4 after his band member jaywalked and got caught by the police when they were gigging around his town. After telling his drum instructor what happened, they came up with their band name.

His drum instructor shaped who he is as an artist as Moran has been with him since day one. Moran currently has one instrumental on every platform that was put out in 2018. He originally wrote it with lyrics and ended up releasing it as just an instrumental last minute. 

“The instrumental is meant for the listener to interpret it in their own way, to create their own unique story rather than what is told,” Moran said. 

Even so, that lit up his passion for songwriting and led him to create an EP. Moran was also given the opportunity to work on a part of it with a producer whom he met in Los Angeles through his brother. However, it has been put on hold for the fifth year in a row due to school work and Moran’s busy schedule with performing at Rowan. 

“I’m trying not to get overworked. During any free time, I can make that priority of finishing that up and getting it out,” Moran said. “I need to perfect everything and get it to a good enough point and let it go. Or I’m never going to get anything out again.”

Social media has helped Moran through his musical journey as he currently actively posts on Instagram and TikTok. He had one video on YouTube that did well, however, he had to start his current YouTube channel from the ground up. Moran began doing weekly covers and also took requests from viewers which made him get to where he is today. 

“I covered Billy Joel to Mac DeMarco and also did video game covers,” Moran said. “They’re not big but they’re fun. I like being able to engage with people and get feedback.”

Moran has also gotten critiques on his videos from viewers but only uses them to get better at doing what he loves. 

“I need to hear that, you know?” Moran said. “I don’t take that like ‘Oh I’m never going to touch a mic again.’ That should be motivation to get better.”

Rowan has helped Moran grow as an artist by giving him multiple opportunities to perform locally. After performing at Landmark for a final grade in class, Moran ended up meeting some of his close friends who ended up being in the band with him. When talking about performing, Moran expressed his love for being in front of a crowd. 

“I feel like you get that adrenaline. I like the engagement and people getting happy and dancing around,” Moran said. 

With opportunities pouring in, Moran also locally toured with an independent artist in November who put out an EP earlier in 2023 and he is excited to be her studio drummer at the end of this year. 

“The EP that’s coming out will be incomparable to the work that I currently have out and I’m looking forward to it,” Moran said. “There’ll be more to come with that in the future.”

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