RollOut Q & A Session With Joy Tolbert & Tim Toz Together They Form ‘TolbertToz’
Joy & Tim’s long distance collaboration is a culmination of songwriting, studio and live experience and the innate fondness of similar tastes in Rock & Pop.
They usually land on the same page.
But new ideas spark new conversations and… new songs.
That’s where the fun is.
Where are you from?:
TolbertToz is Joy Tolbert & Tim Toz
We are in the NJ/NY radius USA…
Tim is in South Jersey…Joy is 150 miles north in New York. North of the City.
It’s a long distance collaboration but close enough that we can get together for vocal sessions.
Those are always great fun.
How long have you been making music?:
Joy: since I was 6 yrs old. I would write poetry and then set it to music.
Tim: I’d have to say 13-ish… got a set of 2nd hand drums. There was a guitar and piano in the house before that but somehow never pursued it till drums came along. Then guitar followed.
How many songs /albums have you released to date?:
Tim: We currently have 15 Singles out. Since we’re long distance… we’ve found it better to release one song at a time.
Our sessions are one day long so we try to get 2 songs complete if not one. Some of the vocal writing is left to those sessions so we strive leave with at least one track. If it goes well we get 2.
Can you tell us about your latest release and the background/inspirations behind it?:
Joy: I was thinking about how people unite when fighting for a cause they believe in any cause.
How change can happen and peoples views can change when others express their feelings for something they feel strongly about and become a united front promoting their cause.
I think it is one of the great advantages we have as people.
Tim: Musically, I had an idea for a Chorus…We Run… slightly different lyric approach…but was more about the melody. Joy has full reign over the Lyrics and I love what she did with this track.
So once the Chorus was established we fleshed out the rest of the song. Joy has a heavy hand in what is happening musically… since she has to sing over it… and was a big part in shaping the verses. Joy keys off drums a lot of the time… she wanted a specific feel on the verse… I wasn’t sure at first… but turns out she was right once again.
How have you ended up in the music industry?:
Joy: I always wanted to perform since I was very small. When I was 16, I was at a bar/restaurant and a band named Red Hook who were performing asked me to come up and sing a song. After that, I had a need to perform in front of people and began finding musicians to form an original band in Manhattan.
Tim: Probably from just being interested in the tech side of the Studio world. You’re playing and writing. So in the midst of that…learning how to engineer your own songs. Expanding the Studio gear eventually lead to a stint through much of the 90s Recording Bands and Producing Songwriters in my own facility with another partner. Afterwards… continuing to write and record. Some of which have become TolbertToz Songs.
What do you think of the music industry in 2019?:
Joy: Its definitely different from what I grew up knowing. I think it’s a big learning curve for ones who grew up in the old industry. However, I think its pretty awesome that there is so much talent out there that can now be heard because of the internet.
In one sense it is easier to put yourself out to the masses, but any type of compensation for your efforts is definitely exhaustive. The industry was a small family years ago…everyone knew each other in their circle and greatly benefited from those connections. And now, I guess it is similar but it’s spread all over the world which can be a daunting enterprise to tackle.
Tim: Absolutely. It’s really black and white from the previous model. Clear gatekeepers. You had to know someone who at least knew one of those. Now it’s completely Decentralized. If you push… your tracks can be heard on the other side of the world. That’s a beautiful thing. Unfortunately Music has also been largely demonetized. We’re involved in some blockchain/crypto music sites. We’d like to see the blockchain technology
evolve into a real benefit for musicians. It’s all still so new.
Who do you think the most influential artist?:
Joy: I am so eclectic in my taste and influences. There are parts of many artists that I like and am inspired by. So I guess my most influential artist would be a combination of all of them.
Tim: True to an extent for me. I think what I listen for most these days is a song/composition.
I have clear influences… Zeppelin, Rush, Yes, Genesis, Trevor Rabin…tons of Rock stuff
I like a lot of Jazz/Fusion. Recently listening to a lot of Classical….refreshing.
Who have you collaborated with so far in your career?:
Joy: Well, if you’re looking for someone already famous, then no one. But I have worked with some brilliant people over the years, one of which is my current writing partner, Tim Toz.
Tim: Aw shucks… Thanks Joy! Lol… But yes… like Joy… lots of collaborations. But I can say TolbertToz has been the most consistent and highest quality collaboration to date. Joy gets what I do like no else has in the past. So that really let’s the guard down in terms of trying to “write for Joy”. Joy will routinely edit my selections musically or flat out reject them. Lol.
It’s true. But not a problem. She has to sing over this stuff and hears other passages that I clearly was not hearing. Banging that out is a true collaboration. It works.
How do you think you differ from other artists?:
Joy: Being a female singer, some people expect you to sound like the stereotypical female artist. But because I am so influenced and drawn towards the male vocal qualities, I think I stand out in my propensity to predicate that trait.
Tim: I think our approach to writing is not cast in stone. Being the half that generates the music… it’s centered around bass, guitar and drums…it can easily introduce piano or strings.
It’s not chasing any era or what appears to be current. Is that what makes it different? I don’t know. I just know that we are true to the song at hand that we like. If we both don’t like it we don’t do it. Joy has a great low register and I love when she bites down on the Rock side.
Sometimes in the same song. Joy’s voice is probably the biggest factor on how we are different.
Dead or alive, who would be your dream collaboration?:
Joy: Elton John, David Bowie, Pete Townshend, Saul Hudson (Slash), Freddie Mercury,
Steven Tyler, I’m sure there are many more but I’ll stop
Tim: Great question…jeez… Geddy Lee… Nancy Wilson, Steve Perry, Sammy Hagar, Trevor Rabin, Jon Anderson… I also think collabs are dependent on the personalities of the other person. But Interesting question.
What was the first album you bought?:
Joy: I didn’t buy it, I stole it from my sister – The Mamas and the Papas If You Can Believe Your Eyes and Ears
Tim: Don’t really remember… my 2 older brothers already had a killer collection… but maybe Rush or… Foghat? Lol
What’s your favorite song at the moment?:
Joy: I have been listening to a lot of new alternative rock lately so as of right now I would say Choke, by: I Don’t Know How But They Found Me. Musically its a fun, uplifting song that makes you want to get up and move and lyrically, its about wanting someone to get out of your face and die. Its such an amusing dichotomy to me. But next week my favorite song could be Chopin’s Prelude No. 4 in E minor
Tim: I agree with Joy it could change at any time. Been listening to a lot of classical lately.
But then I heard “Man of our Times” by Genesis the other day… so right now… that.
If you had to sell your music collection tomorrow, what album would you leave in your draw?:
Joy: None. I’d be selling it so I could buy it again or listen on the internet.
Tim: Almost an impossible question. Lol. Permanent Waves from Rush?
You realize this is an impossible question… Lol
What is your favorite saying?:
Joy: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”
Tim: Carry on…
What other hobbies or interests do you have?:
Joy: Horse back riding, holistic health, writing poetry, drawing
Tim: NHL Hockey, Graphic Arts…
Do you have any tattoos or piercings?:
Tim: Nope…not a one…
Tell us more about your upcoming project or this new project?:
TolbertToz: TolbertToz moves forward in the Time-Space Continuum.
We’ll continue to Release Songs as Singles.
A new Song called Wonder should be available shortly. No release date as of yet.
Artwork pending and possibly a Mix tweak.
What’s in the pipeline after this project?:
TolbertToz: We have several Songs on Deck. Writing new Material as we speak.
Songs on Deck still need to finish up mixing and Song Art.
Songs in the pipe are proceeding and a recording date could be set in January 2020.
*Thank you for your time and may you carry on making great, fresh music.:
TolbertToz: Thank You Streamapse for the Opportunity to share our Project with you.
We appreciate it greatly.
Any additional information you would like to add:
TolbertToz: TolbertToz BIO
From the world of 24 track reel to reel recordings, huge studios, leather and lace, CBGB’s and the Village Voice being a musician’s bible; it is a sheer juxtaposition that Joy Tolbert and Tim Toz met through the internet.
Finding each other by chance on Soundcloud and embracing the digitally streaming music that they individually made and uploaded, the pair soon realized that they could make music together even though they were 150 miles apart.
Joy heard one of Tim’s instrumental songs and wanted to put a melody and words to it. “Tim was okay with the idea, but I could tell that he wasn’t sure what might come out of this” said Joy. When she sent the tune back to him with her ideas, he was happily surprised.
Life Rolls By was the first of many songs that they have collaborated on.
For the first 6 months, the team had never met although they had written about 12 songs together.
“Working at a distance has its advantages and disadvantages”, says Joy. “Tim worked out the arrangements playing all the instruments and I recorded scratch vocals on my iPhone to work out the parts.”
“Seems simple enough”, Tim says, “but there’s a good amount of volley back and forth to get to the final versions.”
The team knew that ultimately they would need to come together to record the real vocals. “I kept thinking I would just get some remote recording rig to take up to Joy’s place. But the reality was I had a rig I could take now. So that’s what we did.” said Tim.
The process seems to work well for the Joy and Tim. They keep churning out great songs. Although at the beginning they yearned for a more organic approach to writing, the team soon realized that this crazy way that they are producing music is working just fine.
And so they continue as TolbertToz
*Stream TolbertToz Feat. Single ‘WE RUN‘ On Our Artist RollOut Playlist:
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