Aiden Leslie’s hot new single, “Nobody Said” is another of the out singer/songwriter’s self-described “diary entries.” In a Skype session from New York, the Cincinnati-born performer discussed his song, which stemmed from a breakup.
“My intention and my goal is to express myself through my music. That’s how I do it. For me, it is like a therapy session--it’s getting it out. I have to talk about it. I always try to write from a place that people get it universally; it’s not Aiden talking about a guy. Everyone can relate to this, or identify with what I’m talking about on some level. It’s the human condition.”
“Nobody Said” is not just about Leslie’s relationship. His catchy song also addresses the trouble gay men can have being honest and communicative.
“I think gay men do have trouble expressing their emotions. I know I do,” he confessed. “We need to take a look at that; we need to get real.”
He cites that there are pressures in the gay community--from body image to trying to be in that A-list crowd--that can prevent guys from being more self-aware and able to grow. His song is less about pointing a finger at an ex and calling him a jerk, and more about looking inward, to one’s self to find self-worth.
The singer, who writes both the lyrics and the melodies for his music, is at a good place in his life now. He is doing what he loves and frequently performs across the country.
After doing theatre in his hometown as a kid, he moved to New York City where he performed in off-off-Broadway shows. On a break during a rehearsal of The Boy from Minnesota, he accompanied a sound guy who also DJed to a record store. Leslie became interested in house music, its sounds and beats, and as a result, became immersed in the culture and nightlife. He started writing songs, and meeting people, such as the legendary Junior Vasquez, who gave Leslie his first break, remixing “Love to Hate You,” a cover of the Erasure song.
Suddenly, Leslie started to develop his sound and his songs, creating hits like “Worlds Away.” (Fun Fact: The video for that song hit #1 on the MTV Logo countdown for a record four weeks.)
While the performer has only released singles thus far--his other song “Diamond Dreams” is a terrific track that shows off the singer’s vocal range and talents--he is working on an album. However, he mourns today’s marketplace for tracks of music, acknowledging, “It is a single world these days. People are putting out single after single after single. It’s testing the grounds musically. I am writing an album, but there are two sides of it. Singers put out 12 songs and one maybe penetrates. The other 11 . People don’t listen to albums anymore. I want to do it, but people’s attention spans are gone.”
Yet Leslie is not discouraged about the music he is making. He is especially proud of “Nobody Said,” effusing about working with producer D1 Music and their production team.
“I brought the words and the music to them, and together we came up with a direction. I wanted ‘Nobody Said’ to be a bit different than my other songs--a little drier, more minimal. I want you to feel the beat, and still be very electronic and very pop. We listened to different groups and sounds, and I see what feels right.”
From the sound of “Nobody Said,” Leslie is headed in the right direction.