We’ve heard enough about Generations X and Y—get ready for Generation Yoni. Thanks to his angsty, edgy modern rock anthem “Twentysomething,” the Florida based singer-songwriter is boldly giving voice to the frustration of his peers, ambitious and restless college grads eager to conquer the world but running into roadblocks and hairpin curves along the way.
Originally released on Yoni’s 2006 EP Ready For More, “Twentysomething” was licensed by MTV for use on their shows Real World, Road Rules and Real World/Road Rules Extreme Challenge. It’s also been requested for use on the Oxygen Network’s Bad Girls Club and is getting play on PBS’ Roadtrip Nation. The singer, whose last name is Leviatan, had originally submitted the tune for a contest at broadjam.com, an online indie-music showcase. Winning submissions were included on a compilation titled College Credit: Indie Rock 101. “Twentysomething” was the top vote getter and received major college radio airplay which led to the TV placements.
Yoni’s recently released full-length debut album Extra Credit features a re-mastered version of this track and two other songs from Ready For More, “Tales of Higher Learning” and his cool pop/punk libertarian rant “Let The Devil Know,” which will be played in the final scene/end credits of the upcoming indie film “One-Eyed Monster” starring Ron Jeremy. “Twentysomething” is scheduled to be included on Episode 7 in the latest season of PBS’s Roadtrip Nation.
These tunes have helped him build a passionate following (of all ages, not just 20somethings!) as he’s performed a wide variety of acoustic, duo and full band gigs at venues throughout South Florida this past year, including Automatic Slim’s and Purdy Lounge in South Beach and Tobacco Road, a downtown Miami staple of live music for 95 years. Yoni also hosted a CD release party for Extra Credit at Revolution in Fort Lauderdale, which has featured a wide variety of major artists, including Matisyahu, Pink and John Legend.
Since its release, Extra Credit has received airplay on over 150 college stations nationwide. Lately, Yoni, who was featured recently on the cover of South Florida’s New Times, has been playing colleges throughout Florida, including a number of shows in Gainesville, home of his alma mater the University of Florida. He was also asked to perform with award winning singer/songwriter Ellen Bukstel at a Barack Obama rally in Miami. He plans to tour colleges all over the U.S. in 2008.
“Like some of my other songs, ‘Twentysomething’ is about that transition between the fun college experiences I had and the realization that it’s time to face the real world,” says Yoni, who graduated with a degree in criminology and law. “When you first get out of school there’s this sense that ‘things are just going to happen for me’ and when they don’t automatically, you start to long for the fun, simpler days of college. Eventually you realize the only way things are going to happen is if you make them happen.
“For a while, I got sidetracked from my personal musical ambitions by working for Warner Bros. Publications, producing instructional music products. Although it was a great experience and I learned a lot about the business, it still wasn’t what I wanted to be doing with my life. The Extra Credit idea comes from the fact that I never really felt fulfilled with my non-musical degree or working in a corporate environment. Making this album is my ‘extra credit’ and I feel like I’m finally on the path that I should be.”