“A global pandemic, world war, recession, sentient AI around the corner, and so much more later, the existential dread and mental health struggles are at an all-time high. In one of my recent therapy sessions, my therapist brought up the Latin phrase, “memento mori” – remember that you die, and he challenged me to consider that the
inevitability of death can create a sense of freedom rather than dread.
My drummer and I started writing this song in the car, just tapping on the dashboard. And we conquered the phrase “We’re All Gonna Die,” so it’s not sad but rather triumphant. Just like the phrase memento mori, the song is simultaneously full of dread and hope. Still, in the end, it’s a rather optimistic view, greeting the inevitability with open arms and saying, “we’re all gonna die, we just don’t know when let’s make the most of the time that we got left,” Smith shares. “We’re All Gonna Die” is the existential anthem of the summer that we all can relate to from emerging artist AJ Smith.
Denver-born and recently relocated from NYC to Nashville, AJ Smith’s unconventional path to becoming a pop artist is reflected throughout his music, which has the uncanny ability to evoke a nostalgic desire for a dramatic pop of
decades past while sounding modern fresh, and in-the-moment emotional. A flare for the dramatic is likely written into his DNA – AJ’s Father is a former Ringling Bros. “Globe of Death” stunt rider.
At the same time, his Great Great Uncle was famed Cuban pianist Ernesto Lecuona, who composed the Flamenco standard “Malagueña.” Smith’s songwriting and performance abilities have earned multiple awards, including the prestigious Abe Olman Scholarship from the Songwriters Hall of Fame and a semi-finalist ranking in the 2020 International Songwriting Contest.
Recent highlights include a live performance on The Kelly Clarkson Show, being featured on Billboard's "10 Cool New Pop Songs to Get You Through the Week," earning top 5 spots in 2 Spotify editorial playlists, consistent airplay on the SiriusXM Billy Joel channel, a cover feature as Performer Magazine’s Artist of the Month, stories in American Songwriter, Good Morning America, CBS Radio, Spin Magazine, and much more.