Vampire Weekend Frontman Joins NJ Conversation Series

Hey, New Jerseyans! Even globally known musicians question the history of New Jersey!

Jack Antonoff, a New Jersey native, is known by some as Bleachers and by others as the leader of fun. With the NJ Conversation series, the singer-songwriter can add podcaster to his list of things to be known for.

New Jersey Conversation Series

In November, Antonoff released a collaboration with the iconic New Jersey singer-songwriter Bruce Springsteen. The song, titled “chinatown,” featured Antonoff and Springsteen cruising through their home state in a Cadillac. The song and video were both rooted in NJ history and their own personal memories.

Since the collaboration, Antonoff wanted to continue to tell Jersey’s best musical stories, so he started a podcast. “I’m from a strange place. I want to understand it and why I sound like it,” he explained in a press release. 

The New Jersey Conversation Series will feature notable Jersey talent and discuss the state’s rich entertainment history. It’s first guest was none other than Vampire Weekend frontman Ezra Koenig.

Ezra Koenig Sits Down with Jack Antonoff

The first installment of the NJ Conversation Series with guest Ezra Koenig delved into music, TV, and pop culture. Antonoff and Koenig made a point to tell listeners that The Sopranos is not an genuine representation of all NJ residents. The legendary HBO series might not be completely accurate, but it clearly made an impact on pop culture. (It made an impact on New Jersey, as well, something both musicians are well aware of.)

“It’s an important work of art, it belongs to everybody. But when I think about something that really belongs to the Tri-state area, it’s the opening credits. I think it’s maybe one of the best opening sequences of all time,” Koenig explained. 

The New York by way of New Jersey culture was also a topic of conversation. From Saturday Night Live’s opening sketch to the use of accents in media, not every outlet pegs NJ perfectly.

As musicians looking for inspiration, both Koenig and Antonoff believe New Jersey is a great place to look. The duo discussed the widespread nature of the state and its background. You could live up north in what is essentially a New York suburb, or,  hours away from it. Whether you need a quiet escape or the nightlife, the state has it all. This, of which, made them great musicians with an even greater pride in their hometowns.

Their mutual appreciation for their home state and the pop culture that surrounds it was evident throughout the 17 minute conversation. You can listen to the whole episode here.

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Mia Bottel
Mia Bottel
2 years ago

Love a good music podcast! Thanks for the great highlight, going to listen right now!

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