Review Fix chats with Singer-Songwriter Bob Pressner who discusses his super hot single American Dream, as well as his goals for the future.
About Bob Pressner:
With lyrics that talk about America on “lockdown” and daily “showdowns,” the official video showcases actual footage of everyday Americans at rallies, and on the streets, exercising their 1st Amendment rights in the lead-up and aftermath of the elections. Released on Inauguration Day in January, the visceral montage contains footage of President Trump, with reactions both, in favor, and against, as seen on ABC, CNN, C-SPAN, and FOX. Pressner does not appear in the video.
Like the current state it depicts, reactions to the video have been passionate and swift.
Slowly building an audience the video went viral in early spring, eventually climbing to number one in Canada, Mexico, Russia, Germany, Brazil, England, Australia, New Zealand, Italy, and Israel. At the beginning of May, propelled by millions of YouTube views and hundreds of thousands of Spotify streams, “American Dream” debuted at #12 on the Billboard Hot Rock Chart, ahead of tracks by John Mayer and Linkin Park, then jumping to #10 the following week. Simultaneously landing on the Billboard Hot Singles Sales Chart, it’s logged seven consecutive weeks in the Top 5, with three weeks at #1. “American Dream” recently surpassed 13 million views on YouTube (his channel eclipsed 57 million) and 1 million streams on Spotify.
A former Wall Street Trader, 62-year old Pressner left his day job (and New York City) after a truck bomb was detonated underneath the World Trade Center in 1993. It shook him to the core and woke him up. Guided by the light of a thoughtful egalitarian torch, Pressner began creating music that is substantial, with significant messages. Eight albums under his belt, his music and messages have resonated. Anointed the “first great troubadour since Paul Simon and James Taylor” by LA Examiner, Bob’s ongoing mission is to inform and educate with lyrics and music that is authentic, giving people something to make them think, reflect, and awaken. “American Dream,” from his album Everyman, perfectly represents this ethos while taking a hard look at the state of our country and the divisiveness surrounding the current administration.
Review Fix: How did you get involved in music?
Bob Pressner: I grew up singing being a cantor. A teacher put a guitar in my hand at 16 and said you have a gift, use it. Then I met poet Allen Ginsberg and he told be I would be the next Bob Dylan. Ok well not quite yet. lol
Review Fix: How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you?
Pressner: My sound is Americana. I try and make people think and write meaningful songs.
Review Fix: What makes “American Dream” a special track?
Pressner: American dream was the right song at the right time. Traveling around the country I listened to so many people who felt their voices weren’t being heard. So many people feel they are losing their American dream. They felt they were working harder for less, they were falling behind and nobody seemed to care. Young people had less opportunity, older people had no opportunity. The idea that our children would live a better life than us was no longer a certainty. We are just engulfed in uncertainty, so on many different levels, American Dream interacts with people. The song is multifaceted, it’s a driving song while also encouraging introspection and dialogue. Are we safe? Are we going to be under threat like Europe? Can we come together, finally, or are the divisions too deep? Are we the Roman empire? Too divided? Too in debt? Too many threats? It’s a call to open hearts, open minds, and provide the courage for each of us to speak up and grow as a person, and strive to be a better person.
Review Fix: The single comes from your Everyman album. Is there a thematic thread that binds the songs?
Pressner: The theme of the tracks is inspiration and meaning. People tell me my songs are real and really touch them.
Review Fix: Where do you find inspiration for your lyrics?
Pressner: I find the inspiration from my songs from a spiritual place from all the many life experiences I’ve had.
Review Fix: Do you think your songs are political?
Pressner: A few of my songs are political but mostly not.
Review Fix: What have you learned from all of the exposure you’ve gotten from Billboard lately?
Pressner: The Billboard success has confirmed the power of persistence. Just that you can never give up your dream. In the darker days, we all get knocked down. It’s not always easy but getting up off the deck and giving it your all and being authentic, being yourself. I’ve long given up trying to emulate someone else. We each are a jewel that needs to be cultivated. Maybe the odds against you are a million to one but what if that one is you?
Review Fix: What are your goals in music?
Pressner: I would like to continue to grow as an artist. I would like to be “New Artist of the Year.” Be nominated and win “Song of the Year.” I would like poetry and meaningful music to have a more prominent role in music and I would like to be a part of this. I would like to tell people how important art and music are in our lives. I would like to keep writing and recording and I’d like to introduce more poetry to people as part of what I do as an artist. I would like to tour. I’d like to make money in music and help other musicians to do the same. Musicians really get the short end of the stick too often.
Review Fix: Are there any organizations or non-profits you support?
Pressner: I have supported many charities over the years recently performing for veterans.
Review Fix: What’s next?
Pressner: I look forward to my national Comcast/XFINITY concert being aired.
Review Fix: Anything else you’d like to add?
Pressner: If you believe in your dream you can never give up and you must think outside the box because you never know when and where the break will come.
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