Jay Malinowski speaks to The Cord about going solo

For Bedouin Soundclash frontman Jay Malinowski, this past year has been one of many firsts.

Malinowski not only completed his debut solo album Bright Lights and Bruises, but on March 3 he launched his first solo tour in Peterborough.

Last night, Malinowski made a stop in Waterloo, performing to a crowd at the Starlight.

Before coming to Waterloo, Malinowski expressed his excitement about being back in the city in an interview with The Cord on Monday.

“I’m looking forward to coming back. I’ll get acquainted with the Waterloo people again,” he said.

On beginning his solo tour, Malinowski stated, “It’s been good.”

“It’s been such a different experience than being with Bedouin. Just being alone on stage has taught me again how you have to play to the crowds,” he added.

Having played countless shows with Bedouin Soundclash, Malinowski has been able to transfer a lot of that experience to the solo spotlight, but explained that performing solo poses its own unique challenges.

“It’s different. You have to reassess everything because it’s just you, so I’m sort of re-learning how to play to 50 people a night or 100 people a night,” Malinowski explained.

And while the intimate experience has been positive for the musician, he notes that he misses his bandmates already.

“I’m so comfortable with [Bedouin bassist] Eon. We’re best friends. Being on the road is just like having a family vibe. I miss the inside jokes and this is just a little more isolating than touring with the band,” Malinowski admitted.

Bedouin Soundclash has been on break for a few months. In fact, the drastic change to an average life after being on tour for so long is what inspired Malinowski’s solo album.

“There are many changes that take place when you’ve just been living sort of cavalierly for that long,” he said.

“I basically came back and my personal life had completely changed, so there’s a few things I had to say…. Writing songs helped me through it.”

Malinowski explained that the sound of Bright Lights and Bruises is darker and doesn’t have the reggae feel that Bedouin Soundclash is known for.

When asked, he explained that the music he’s written on his own has more personal meaning and strong emotion than the work he created with Bedouin Soundclash.

As a singer-songwriter, Malinowski explained that he is always searching for a chance to write music.

“The reason I did the record was to just start writing again for the purpose of writing and enjoying myself,” he said.

Malinowski added that he has every intention to go back and write with Bedouin Soundclash when they decide to begin creating new music again.

When asked about future endeavours and goals for the future, Malinowski replied humbly.

“I’m just taking things one day at a time and I just want to keep writing as long as I possibly can,” he said.

“Life’s been just a huge gift given to me in terms of having the opportunity to do it,” he said.