Solitude. There is no doubt that solitude can bring a lot of uncertainty. Finding comfort in it can also be a grizzly task. However, even with the lows, it can bring, it also never ceases to help with the creation of something great.
We often are gifted with great music when bands and artists take some time to really detach from the hustle and bustle, nurture, and take time to focus on themselves. As of recently, we were gifted with such an EP, by an even more gifted gentleman. Allow me to introduce, Vince Ciafardoni.
Born and raised in New Jersey, of course. Vince developed a love for music early on and even though he didn’t grow up in a family of musicians, his family had a deep love and appreciation for all types of music. The Young Stamos became quite the versatile musician, picking up the guitar first, then bass, and of course singing. Heavily influenced by a lot of 90s alternative rock, he grew up listening to bands like Nirvana, Goo Goo Dolls, and a few other favorites that he’ll tell us about later. All that being said, it’s no wonder that his debut EP has a very 90s rock, Deftones with a pinch of Finch sound to it. Now Vince is a solo artist, but is releasing music as “The Harbor”. He recorded all his songs in Hammonton, NJ with the musical geniuses themselves, Nik Bruzzese and Ace Enders. He had a more than amazing experience, which seems to be the case when working with either of these gentlemen. And as always the final product comes out sounding like a masterpiece. The first single we heard from The Harbor was “Gasping for Air”. Here we are introduced to Vince’s unique vocals, which gives us a grunge ballad type of vibe. He then released a video for the single, it has a mummy theme to it which is quite fitting given the title of the song. About a week later he releases the full EP which is titled “Solitude in Uncertainty”. Lyrically it’s personal and extremely genuine and with his sound, everything just fits perfectly.
To give us more of a backstory, I recently asked Vince a few questions pertaining to his recording experience, his musical background, and more!
- First off, I would really like to get some history on who Vince Ciafardoni is. Can you give us a little background on yourself? And what got you into playing and writing music? Was guitar your first instrument?
Sure! My name is Vince Ciafardoni, born and raised in New Jersey and well, I really enjoy writing and performing music! Ever since I was a young buck, I’ve always had a huge appreciation for music and the arts. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a family that loves and enjoys many different styles of music. While no one in my immediate family is a musician, they certainly have a genuine passion for music of all genres.
During my early high school years, my older brother and I were big fans of the alternative rock scene which ultimately inspired me to pick up the guitar at 16 years old. Seeing so many artists that I looked up to playing songs that were relatively easier to learn, while at the same time extremely catchy and oozing with heart and passion, inspired me to follow through with learning guitar.
While the guitar was the first instrument that I learned, a couple of years later I decided to pick up a bass guitar to play in my friends’ band at the time. I ended up falling in love with playing the bass, and it took my interest in music and songwriting even further. Eventually, I became fascinated with the whole writing process and decided to take up as many instruments as needed to write complete songs on my own. (vocals, guitar, bass, etc.)
- Who would you say your biggest (musical) influences are?
There are so many different musical influences that I feel come into play for me. I think the biggest ones have to be Armor For Sleep, Jimmy Eat World, and the Goo Goo Dolls. BUT I also feel heavily influenced by bands like Linkin Park, Nirvana, Finch, and even Three Days Grace. It’s kind of all over the place but I definitely take inspiration from many different bands of all sorts of genres.
- You just released your first EP “Solitude in Uncertainty”. Which gives us such a refreshing sound, which quite honestly, we haven’t heard in a while. Very 90s alt/rock, but with your unique twist. How was the recording process? Did the songs come to life as you expected?
Thank you! The recording process was absolutely amazing! Having the opportunity to work in the studio with Ace Enders and Nik Bruzzese was nothing short of awe-inspiring. They always gave me 100% during my time there, and to have the energy and passion you put in a mood at all times is quite honestly the most powerful feeling. They took the songs I believed in and brought them to life even more than I imagined. It was a magical experience that was honestly one of the best times I’ve ever had and I cannot wait to do it again.
- With bands/artists heading back to stages, do you have any plans to play any shows in the near future?
Without a doubt yes. I do want to play shows in the near future. Being a solo artist does have its challenges when it comes to gigs, but I do plan on putting together a live band for these gigs. Once we have plenty of rehearsal time, I can confidently say that I will be more than ready when that time comes!
- If you could only listen to one 90s alt band for the rest of your existence, who would it be and why?
Haha oh man, this is tough. There are way too many good 90s alt bands to choose from! I suppose if I had to choose just one, I’d pick Green Day because they have such a good variety of sounds (for both their beautiful ballads and their upbeat energetic tunes). I have to give honorable mentions to other 90s classics like Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stone Temple Pilots, and the Goo Goo Dolls though.
Even though this is only his first EP, it seems Vince has set the bar high and it will be very exciting to see the musical future this gent has ahead of him. Staying true to yourself when creating something to share with the world can be tough. You have to be ready to put yourself in a vulnerable state and essentially put your heart on your sleeve and let the world dissect it. Music like Vince has created is something I think we can all appreciate. Not only because it’s so personal and relatable, but because it gives us a look into a time when things may have become quite dark and the only comfort we could cling to was within ourselves. And like in any moment of darkness, we eventually push through and start to see the light. Excited to see what else this talented gent has in store for us. Until then, take this EP for a spin, give Vince and The Harbor a follow and try to find that light and comfort in solitude.
Article by Kristen Hernandez