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Jon Fuller didn’t go into 2021 expecting to record a full-length album. Long-hauling from a covid-19 infection that started in March 2020 (he jokes, “I was on the vanguard for the first and last time in my life”) and trying to stay busy, he reached out to his friend Dan Kleederman (Grand Kid, Bartees Strange) to see if he’d be interested in working together on a few songs. Those “few songs” quickly became When Did You Get So Damn Scared, Jon’s most ambitious and honest work to date.

The 12 songs that comprise the album run the gamut from the personal (“Stepping Stone,” which chronicles an early adolescent same-sex crush and the dizzying heights and overwhelming lows it entailed) to the political (“Burn It Down,” a searing indictment of the rise of authoritarian strongmen around the world over the past decade), and each song is buoyed by the musical contributions of Dan Kleederman (guitar, additional production), Derek Swink (drums) and Dillon Garrett (bass). Though the album was recorded fully virtually, with each musician sending in their parts from their various homes, the result is still a warm, live sound.

Lyrically, these songs pull no punches. “I wouldn’t say it’s a divisive record, but I definitely had a tendency in past albums — though I still stand fully behind them — to go maybe 80% of the way to the full truth I was hoping to express,” Jon shares. No trace of that reticence is to be found on Scared, which contains lines like “Do you remember when we roomed together that one summer/it was the only perk of being in the closet in 2003” (Stepping Stone) and “Keep the fundies entertained while you get another NDA signed for your mistress’s abortion” (Burn It Down). “To be honest, the nice Midwestern boy in me was a little nervous getting these songs ready to be put out into the world, but that’s a sign that they’re songs worth hearing.”

Jon’s previous two albums, The Art of Denial and Skipping Away from Dissonance, received airplay on independent and college radio stations and were both featured on WVIA-FM’s end-of-year Best Of lists. Jon also was a 2020 Just Plain Folks first prize winner in the “Best Modern Rock Song” category for the song “Gathering Tide,” and his music was licensed for promotional materials for the Broadway show Peter and the Starcatcher.

tracklist

1. Voice

Featured instruments: electric guitar, piano

Genre: rock, pop

2. How Long

Featured instruments: piano, guitar

Genre: rock, pop

3. Stepping Stone

Featured instruments: piano, guitar

Genre: singer-songwriter, pop, folk

4. Not in My Name

Featured instruments: acoustic guitar, piano

Genre: rock, pop

5. Thought We Could Make It

Featured instruments: piano

Genre: singer-songwriter, pop, rock

6. Center of Gravity

Featured instruments: electric guitar, piano

Genre: rock, alternative

7. Gonna Have Fun Today

Featured instruments: Wurlitzer, piano

Genre: cabaret, singer-songwriter

8. Lie Yourself to Sleep

Featured instruments: guitar, piano

Genre: singer-songwriter, rock

9. Coffee Again

Featured instruments: Wurlitzer, Hammond organ

Genre: singer-songwriter, alternative

10. Burn It Down

Featured instruments: electric guitar, piano

Genre: rock

11. The Glow

Featured instruments: piano

Genre: singer-songwriter, ballad

12. I'm

Featured instruments: piano, guitar

Genre: singer-songwriter, rock

press

"When Did You Get So Damn Scared is one of the most dynamic albums I've come across in a while. Each track... is so carefully crafted that pressing play is like stepping into a whole new sonic universe."

-- Sasha Lauryn, Skope Mag

"Jon’s most epic and honest record to date... the full spectrum of sound is filled with this cozy and relatable energy.

-- Keith Pro, Indie Band Guru

 

"A highly personal, bravely honest collection of songs."

-- Dan MacIntosh, Curious For Music

 

"Gripping sound design and composing... and a fantastically presented vocal performance."

-- Excess Magazine (German), 10/10 review

 

"All of these tracks have the same thing in common, the gorgeous tones and masterfully layered textures that Fuller wraps his songs in. The deftness and delicacy with which he does this are what turn fairly simple songlines into masterful alt-pop anthems. And no one does that quite like Jon Fuller.

-- Dave Franklin, Dancing About Architecture

video

Stepping Stone (lyric video)

Voice (music video)

contact

for all inquiries: jon@jonfullermusic.com

audio

Voice
Stepping Stone
Gonna Have Fun Today
Burn It Down

hi-res photos

all photos by Anna Azarov

color

b&w