Where would you find a music star in the making on a Friday night? Most likely at a gig; so grab a front row seat to hear the natural vocals and acoustic guitar of senior Nick Mock of Newton Falls, OH. English student by day, singer-songwriter by night, passionate artist 24/7; his talent and determination promise to take him far in his future career.
To say Mock has had an eventful year would be quite an understatement. While working on completing his undergraduate degree in English and adolescent/young adult education at the University of Mount Union, he is actively involved on campus, was crowned 2013 Homecoming King and recently released his first ever EP on iTunes, entitled “The Better Days EP.” Mock writes all of his own songs and his music has been compared to that of artists Jason Mraz and Phillip Phillips.
“The overall positivity surrounding the release has been amazing. When I was recording the EP, I told my producer [Jason Kovach], who always believed in me, that I would be using it to gauge my future regarding music and the positive feedback has really confirmed my decision to pursue a career in the industry,” Mock said.
During his experience as a Raider Guide, member of Residence Life and involvement in various organizations on campus, Mock has met many people who have provided support, encouragement and countless opportunities to network and showcase his talents.
One such organization is the Raider Programming Board (RPB), which hosts a Coffeehouse series Friday nights in Campus Grounds on Mount Union’s campus, allowing students to showcase their talents.
“My favorite part about Coffeehouse is the amount of support the performers receive from their peers,” Mock said. “I’ve been to a lot of open-mic nights and all of the successful ones have something in common: a relaxed, non-judgmental environment.
RPB has also introduced Mock to the National Association for Campus Activities (NACA), an organization that he plans on becoming a member of in the near future. NACA holds both regional and national conventions, where performers, ranging from comedians to magicians and everything in between, reveal their talents to campus activity boards. While RPB has brought many discovered talents to Mount Union through NACA, Mock hopes to continue performing on college campuses with this affiliation.
In addition to the student body, Mock credits the writing department at Mount Union for helping him toward achieving his goals.
“Each professor finds unique ways to tap into the creativity and writing ability of every student who walks into their classroom,” Mock said. “They are great professors who don’t shy away from forcing better writing out of their students.”
While One Republic’s “Native” is Mock’s current go-to album on his iPod, his recent favorite song to cover is “Folsom Prison Blues” by Johnny Cash.
“I have this infatuation with infusing my own sound into older songs that you might not think I’d ever sing,” Mock said.
If Mock could tour with anyone in the industry, he would choose his role model, musician Ben Rector.
“He is an extremely talented artist who I could learn a lot from. He has worked his way to a large fan base and the creation of his own label without the help of a major record label. His music is honest and refreshing,” Mock said.
Mock’s favorite memories from this past year include accepting the homecoming crown and participating in the Mr. UMU competition, an annual male pageant.While Mock performed alongside friends as a guitarist, Vanilla Ice impersonator and NSYNC boy band member in previous years, this year he took center stage.
“All three times I found a way to embarrass myself in front of a large portion of the students on campus,” Mock said.
While Mock’s ultimate goal is to become a successful recording artist, he has additional career possibilities in mind. From writing songs for movies and commercials, to co-writing on fellow artists’ albums, making a courageous move to Nashville, TN or becoming a professor of creative writing, Mock’s future looks to be full of potential and wonderfully unpredictable.
“I’m thankful that I have the opportunity to do what I love; and that’s make music that people enjoy,” Mock said.
“The Better Days EP” is available for purchase not only on iTunes, but through Spotify, Amazon and Google Play as well.
To learn more about Mock, visit reverbnation.com/nickmock, follow him on Twitter @nick_mock, add him on Facebook at facebook.com/nick.mock.music or listen to his music at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BLspI-KTiDU&feature=youtu.be.