Jonathan of Nightly Talks Upcoming Music and Festival Season

In 2015, cousins Joey Beretta and Jonathan Capeci formed the band Nightly and, within a few months, amassed a large following after releasing their debut song, “XO,” on Soundcloud. Their melodious, dark, alt-pop vibes have expanded in their latest EP, Honest. Today, Lithium writer Samantha Schraub sits down with Jonathan from Nightly to talk about their latest work, how they came to be, and what the future holds.

Lithium: You and Joey had always wanted to become a band from a  young age. What would you say was the moment when you decided it was time to finally put that dream into action?
Jonathan: That’s a good question. I mean, honestly, we’d just [sort of] been working at it in our parents’ basement [and] then eventually wrote some songs and did some shows. I don’t really think there was one monumental moment; it was just something that we didn’t really walk away from.

Lithium: As young creators yourselves, what advice would you give to readers looking to follow a path similar to your own? Was there any stand-out advice you were given?
Jonathan: I think that perseverance would be the biggest thing. There [are] so many ups and downs throughout it. You really just [have to] persevere.

Lithium:  Nightly is currently on tour supporting The Struts and will be touring with Urban Cone later this summer. Is there anywhere you’re especially looking forward to visiting?
Jonathan: Honestly, just anywhere. Any show that kids come to is [going to] be a great time. It’ll be fun to be in Cambridge and New York City. Those are always fun areas. There [are] just lots of [things] to check out, lots of good food and everything. So, those are definitely the top two for us.

Lithium:  You’ve also been recently announced to be attending Austin City Limits this year, and of course you will also be at Bonnaroo in a few weeks. How does it feel to be included in such major festivals?
Jonathan: It’s insane. We haven’t been to either of those, so I’m not exactly sure what to expect, but the lineups are so awesome. I can’t wait to see some of the bands like U2 and The Killers. We’re pumped. We just know we [have to] step it up and bring our A-game for sure.  

Lithium: Naturally, we can expect to hear songs from your EP, Honest, during these shows. Will you be playing some new songs as well? Can you tell us a bit about your upcoming work?
Jonathan: We’ll be playing songs off of Honest. Then, kind of what we’ve been doing every night, we have a bunch of new songs, so we’ve been switching out each night [and] trying a different new song, depending on how long our set is. On The Struts tour, we’ve been playing two new songs. With Urban Cone we’ll probably try a few more because our set will be a little bit longer. It’s just a cool way for us to [gauge] the audience which songs they’re into before deciding which ones are worth releasing.

Lithium: Your band name stems from the text talk for “night, love you.” Will you be keeping these themes of texting, communication, and relationships in your upcoming work?
Jonathan: The album is definitely [going to] be similar, [and] kind of just expanding on what we started with the EP. Like, the EP is sort of the preview to the movie. We’ll definitely introduce some new themes. The thing I’m excited about with releasing new music is being able to go more in depth. For now, we’re just focused on those songs. We just shot a video for another one of the songs from the EP. We want to expose that music more before we bring out more new stuff.

Lithium: One thing that really stands out about Nightly is your clearly defined image: neon lights, late nights, and muted colors. How did you decide on this aesthetic, and what was the process of bringing this mental image to life like?
Jonathan: It was pretty natural. We wrote the music first and everything we were writing was a personal sort of expression. So, after that, we matched the aesthetic with the vibe of the music to see what [worked]. This is sort of like a story that we’re telling and we like to use every piece possible to tell a story, whether it’s an Instagram post or a music video or a newsletter or a song.

Lithium: Our theme this month is what defines you. So, what defines you?
Jonathan: I think what I would like to define me or the band or anyone-- I can’t think of a non-corny answer-- but maybe just having love for people. There’s definitely a lot of darkness and [B.S.] out there and I think that, at the end of the day, [you should be] known for caring about your friends and family and people. I may be going way too deep. As a band, I just remember moments growing up where a song said everything I was feeling but I didn’t know how to say. I remember those late night car rides listening to records and having that be a means of escape and feeling connected. For our music, I think that would be our highest goal to define us-- for us to be the soundtrack to a moment in somebody’s life.

Nightly is about to set off on their tour with Urban Cone. For tour dates, click here. Be sure to keep up with the band on their Twitter, give their Instagram a follow, and listen to their latest EP on their Spotify!

Interview by Samantha Schraub

Photographs by Catie Laffoon

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