I first came across Stephan Hogan during one of my late-night dissociative scrolls through TikTok. Among the countless dances, duets, and dog videos (no hate, I have three dogs) I heard the calming, California voice of a man talking about his experience sending his music to Nashville publishers.
He explained how each publisher had a different opinion of his song, some liked it and some did not. This experience prompted Hogan to stop and think about the industry and the gatekeepers who decide what is good…and what isn’t. But as Stephan says, those that have all the power don’t seem to know the difference.
It’s all just one man’s opinion.
In a video earlier this year, radio personality and American Idol mentor, Bobby Bones, shocked listeners with his video explaining that number one songs are traded like baseball cards. It is not truly and completely about talent, music is a business and money sings.
It is that vein of transparency that Hogan follows in his informative TikTok videos. “I don’t want to come across like I’m bashing the business,” he says, “I just believe it’s past time for change.”
It’s easy to see Hogan’s love for music in the videos. He’s what I would call a “purist,” believing in the sanctity and beauty of musicianship. Stephan confidently states, “I believe true musicianship will win in the end, I believe that if you work hard, practice and stay disciplined, it’s going to pay off at some point.”
Hogan’s perspective is refreshing and simple. If you’re serious about it, treat it like you’re job. “You wouldn’t go into work drunk, so why would you do that with music? So many young musicians get caught up in the scene and forget the discipline of art. You can’t just write when you have a muse, when you feel like it.”
And he’s right. For some reason, many young men and women think art is chaos. There is structure within the freedom of art and Hogan has tapped into that. Often getting up early, getting to the gym, eating healthy. “I stopped drinking six months ago,” he says, “I look at these successful real estate guys and what they do and it’s working.”
It is that attitude and work ethic that Hogan brings to his music. His latest single, “Wouldn’t Want Me” is the feel-good fruit of his labor.
Young Music City had this to say about the new track:
“Wouldn’t Want Me” engulfs you in a nostalgic trip with its classic country base and retro vibe that lives at the cutting edge and brings you right back to the late 80’s and early 90s”-Young Music City
Stephan Hogan is a welcomed mix of the old and the new. His appreciation for where music comes from collides beautifully with his understanding of the natural evolution of the industry.
You’ll find this wisdom, depth, and much more in our recent interview where Stephan talks about his observations of the industry since moving to Nashville, his practical advice for young artists and finding a mentor in country legend, Vince Gill.
Check out the interview in the latest episode of the Bridge Music Podcast HERE.