Central Islip, NY group MJT presents “One Way”, their first single from their forthcoming EP Hour Glass. Formerly known as the Michael Jazz Trio, twenty-year old bassist Matthew Godfrey, eighteen-year-old vocalist/multi-instrumentalist David Godfrey and fourteen-year-old drummer Jo Jo Godfrey blend funk and r&b with a jazz foundation, have multiple wins at Harlem’s Apollo Theatre under their belts, and have performed on the Jazz on the Vine Series (watch MJT perform live). “It’s about the way I view life,” David says of the new record. “It’s about how easy it is to lose yourself in any industry or job. I wrote how I felt at the moment and off personal experiences.”
What do you think has been the biggest influence that made you guys become musicians?
I can’t really pin down one moment that made me want to pick up an instrument. Playing music has kind of always been like that friend I’ve always had but can’t really remember the first time we met. Certain moments, artists have fueled the fire, but I can’t remember one instant where I decided to play music as a career choice. As a matter of fact, I didn’t think about music being my career until we had been playing professionally for a while.
What made you guys shorten your name?
We shortened the name because our music had changed from jazz to rock but we didn’t want to abandon completely the name we worked hard to build. We thought that shortening it would give us kind of a fresh start while also keeping something familiar to the old name. We had always used MJT before on social media and other things for convenience but it hasn’t been official until now. It also leaves the door open in case we want to add additional members, which could be a little tough with ‘trio’ in the name.
What advice do you have for anyone performing at the Apollo Theatre?
Just go out there and do what you know you can do. If you’re prepared for it it’s really no different than any other show. There is a lot of hype and history there which can be a little daunting but the key is to just have fun. Also if you’re not into being a contestant it’s probably not for you. For me it takes personality away from the music when everyone is playing for a vote. But hey, if you love to compete, go for it.
Why is your upcoming EP titled Hour Glass?
Specifically, Hour Glass comes from the first song on the EP, but all the songs on the EP have somewhat of a common theme, although, when we were writing the songs this wasn’t our intention. I feel like almost every song was about the good and bad of time. Whether it be time wasted on things you don’t want to do or time spent with someone you love. In any case, it never seems like you have enough of it, and an hour glass is probably the best image you could have of that. With having a song already titled “Hour Glass” everything pretty much fell into place.
Where do you guys see MJT in ten years?
It’s tough to say because we’re always focused on what’s in front of us. I really want to be just as driven in ten years as we are now, even if we’ve experienced some success. I would hope we’ll a few good albums under our belt and are able to play in arenas and other large venues. When it comes down to it though, we just want to keep creating and performing music that people enjoy. That feeling of rocking out to a crowd of people that are engaged and enjoying what your doing is the reason we’re still playing.