Wayward Blue Jays will be nesting in your playlists

Erik Hackman, Staff Reporter

During the pandemic, many people were locked in their homes, but a group of college students started making music to help get them through it.

This is how Wayward Blue Jays started. The members would send each other songs they were working on to each other through Google Drive and they all got together to record some songs.

Nick Burdette and Kasmira Frazer, both juniors at IU Southeast majoring in audio production, play lead guitar and bass, respectively. Jake Powers, a senior at Northern Kentucky University majoring in audio production, is the lead singer and plays guitar. Sean Stevens, a finance graduate from the University of Louisville, is on the drums.

The two founding members, Powers and Burdette, are childhood friends who eventually met Stevens. They bonded over having the same love for classic rock and pop-punk. When Burdette came to IUS, that is when he met Frazer and asked her to play bass in the band.

The name of their band comes from the grandfather of Powers who was watching his hummingbird feeder while listening to “Carry on Wayward Son” by Kansas. Some blue jays came and started to steal the food from the hummingbirds.

His grandfather started to yell at the birds and called them punks. From this interaction, Powers got the inspiration to name his band after this memory.

They started sharing song ideas with each other in March 2020 and came together as a band a year later.

“When we first started the group, everybody had their own separate favorite artists and brought that to the mix,” Powers said.

The band had influences such as Foo Fighters, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles and many guitar heavy bands. They have a sound that reminds the listener of bands that would have been heard in the late 90s and early 2000s.

When they write songs, it starts with Powers sitting down with an acoustic guitar and he will write a chord progression and some lyrics. After he does that, the other band members get to see what Powers wrote. 

From there, the band will jam with that skeleton of a song and expand on it to make it into a full song. This method helped them write songs such as “Change His Stars” which is their most popular song.

“We have to keep an open mind when there’s a new song because everyone has their idea of what it’s going to sound like in their head,” Burdette said. “Sometimes we have to change something that we are doing, the idea is that we get the best parts of each other.”

If you are interested in listening to The Wayward Blue Jays, you can find them on platforms such as Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube. If you would like to keep up with them, you can follow them @waywardbluejays on Instagram.