The Jonas Brothers were this week’s guest artist on NBC’s Songland. They stopped by the show not only with the intention of finding their next hit, but also for a song they felt “connected” to and imagined themselves playing on tour for years to come.
The Brothers were introduced to four undiscovered songwriters: Able Heart, Remmi, Ori, and Rynn.
First up is Able Heart, a former athlete whose Olympic dreams were shattered due to a devastating back injury at 15. Able said he turned to music to help with his recovery and pitches his song, “Greenlight” to Nick, Joe, and Kevin. When Able shares that he just performed for the first time ever, they tell him he did a great job. They like the song’s rock and rap influences and can even see bringing in a DJ to feature on the track. The Brothers and producers, Ester Dean, Ryan Tedder, and Shane McAnally all agree that Able is a “star.” Their only bit of advice is to double the verse before the chorus to fill up some of the empty space in the song.
Next is Remmi with her song, “Flickering,” a track she says is about lost love. The Jonas Brothers and the producers think the song is beautiful and that its message comes through well. They also hone in on the lyric, “I don’t want to be alone tonight” as an opportunity to create a deeper sense of longing and create an opportunity for harmonies.
Third is Ori, an eighteen-year-old who says that writing is his first love. He shares his song, “No Pressure.” The Jonas Brothers and the producers agree that he is comparable to Bon Jovi or Springsteen lyrically, but suggest making the character in the song more likeable. They also want the song to be more modern production wise.
Finally, Rynn sings “Crowded Places,” a song she wrote about missing her loved ones after she moved to Los Angeles to pursue songwriting. The Brothers and the producers all agree that the song is interesting and suggest setting it up to sing the hook. They also think the song could work as a ballad.
Having met all four songwriters, it’s time for Nick, Joe, and Kevin to decide who will advance to the studio round. They select Remmi, Able Heart, and Rynn.
During the studio round, Able Heart works with Ester to transform “Greenlight” into a group song and structure it so that each member of the Jonas Brothers has their own part to sing.
Rynn and Shane work to strengthen the lyrics on “Crowded Places” and connect them to the Jonas Brothers’ lives.
Remmi and Ryan try to differentiate her song from the others because Ryan knows that Nick, Joe, and Kevin won’t like anything too safe, since he just produced their most recent record. They add in a choir and play with harmonies.
Rynn goes first in the performance round with “Crowded Places.” The Jonas Brothers praise the new lyrics, saying that they will resonate now and in the future.
Able Heart is up second with “Greenlight.” Nick, Joe, and Kevin like that the song includes separate parts for everyone.
Finally, Remmi performs her song, whose title has changed to “Do You Think of Me.” The Jonas Brothers say that the song is powerful and lyrically, it connects with them from an emotional standpoint.
Having heard the new and improved versions of each of the songs, the Brothers ultimately decide to record Able Heart’s “Greenlight.”
Watch the music video for “Greenlight” on YouTube.
Next week, Meghan Trainor visits Songland.