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Singer Jake Miller talks songs, crazy fans

Kidsday reporters Jeanette Giacomantonio, Ciara Greco, Laina Cancilla,

Kidsday reporters Jeanette Giacomantonio, Ciara Greco, Laina Cancilla, Grace Santoro, all from Selden Middle School, with singer Jake Miller backstage at the Paramount Theater in Huntington on June 10, 2015. Credit: Newsday / Pat Mullooly

We interviewed our favorite singer, Jake Miller, backstage in his dressing room before his show at the Paramount in Huntington.

How do you get the ideas for your songs?

It depends on whatever I'm feeling that day. If I feel sad or happy or if I'm having girl problems. It really just depends on how I'm feeling on that specific instance. That's what I write about.

What did you do before you became a musician?

Before I became a musician I was just a regular kid going to high school. I had a few normal jobs I worked at. I worked at an ice cream store, I worked at a golf course, at Publix, a grocery store. Yeah, I was just doing normal kid stuff and doing music as a hobby until it started really popping off.

Do you have any preconcert traditions to set yourself up for a performance?

Me and all my friends we get into like a circle like a group huddle and start jumping up and down, making a lot of noises just kind of getting our adrenaline pumping and getting excited for the show.

How do your parents feel about your newfound fame?

My parents are very proud of me. They come to as many shows as possible. They're here tonight. They flew here from Florida. They try to come to as many shows as possible and they just love seeing everything happen. They love seeing the fans and how they react. They're really proud.

What is your favorite song you've ever written and what was the inspiration for that song?

I have a lot of songs that have done really well for my career and have really helped me put my name out there. And I have songs that are really special to me and personal to me. I have a song called "Steven" that's helped a lot of people get through depression. I have a song called "Like Me" that helps people get through bullying. I think those songs are the more important ones, not the ones about me and living the dream even though they're fun to perform. I think the ones that have really made a difference to people's lives are the ones that are making the most difference. So I like those a lot.

How is your life different from before you started singing?

Oh everything is different. I'm always on the road. I never go home really anymore. I've seen pretty much every state in the country. I've met so many amazing fans and other artists and people who I used to listen to, look up to and now am friends with them. So much has changed.

Do you still keep in touch with your high school friends?

I do, yes. My high school friends are off doing their own thing. Most of them just graduated so they're going on to be either doctors or lawyers or sports anchors or something like that. Everyone's going in separate direction, but we all keep in touch.

What is your favorite stage to perform at and what makes the fans stand out?

Every time I come to New York the shows are always very big and energetic. The fans are just really cool here. I love New York so this is one of my favorite places to perform.

Do you like large venues or small venues and why?

They're different. Obviously a big show is a lot of fun when it's a big loud crowd, but when it's small and intimate it's also a kind of different. The reason why I like it, I can look at every fan in the eyes, I can meet them after the show and as long as the crowd is having fun and energetic it doesn't really matter what the size of the crowd is.

When you were little did you and your sister ever perform in front of your family?

We did, yes. Me and my sister would memorize dances to like Backstreet Boys, NSync and all that stuff. We used to memorize, like, their dance choreographies that they would do like award shows and perform on TV and I loved NSync growing up. I love Justin Timberlake. So we were really into that and my parents would sit on the couch and video us dancing every night.

If you could sing with anyone who would it be?

Either Justin Bieber or Drake probably.

Is it worth making music videos?

That's probably one of my favorite parts of this whole thing. I love not only making the songs, but then coming up with a creative story line and how to bring the song to life by putting a visual to it. I think the fans love music and the songs even better once they see a video for it as well.

Have you ever forgotten the words to your song and have your fans helped you?

I have. Sometimes I go a few days or a few weeks without performing. I'll be in the studio a lot and then I'll think I'm all prepared and then I'll get on stage and I'll just see something in the crowd that, like, distracts me or something and I might forget a word or two, but that's OK -- my fans are always singing. They help me out.

What's the funniest thing a fan has ever done?

I had a fan propose to me once with, like, a diamond ring -- asked me to marry them. That was a long time ago. That was pretty funny. The craziest thing is whenever fans tattoo my lyrics. I think that's really cool and meaningful. I see that all the time. That's probably the craziest thing that fans can do.

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