When it comes to musical talent, Toledo shines more than the credit it’s given for. The city is filled with artists who can appeal to the masses and uphold an image of their own. Such as the fact for the trio that is January Man.
Formally known as Little Pink, January Man consists of Seth Frontine (guitar, vocals), Matt Cashin (bass), and Mason Baker (drums). The group originally formed in 2016 as a result of other projects the members were involved in didn’t come to fruition. Cashin and Baker played in a band together in the early 2010s, Baker and Frontine teaming up a few years later working through Frontine’s songs, then eventually bringing Cashin into the fold to become the group we know today. Interesting enough, Cashin is a guitar player by trade but became the group’s bassist out of necessity, which eventually stuck moving forward. As Little Pink, the group released three EP’s and a handful of singles while performing in Toledo and the surrounding region.
Towards the beginning of 2022, the group felt that with the new musical direction they were heading in, a name change felt appropriate. “We weren’t into the name anymore and we were in the recording process for an album that was very different, so it was a now or never kind of thing to change the name” Cashin mentioned. Frontine added that the name change was also due to the other members of the band contributing more to the songwriting, as Little Pink’s songs were mostly Frontine’s.
The name January Man comes from a trip Frontine took to the Salvation Army. “I came across a VHS tape entitled “The January Man” (Dir. Pat O’Connor, 1989), watched it that night, and realized it could make a great band name” said Frontine. Frontine mentioned the name has a dark, progressive, imaginative aesthetic to it, which can almost describe the new musical direction the group was heading towards. He presented it to Baker and Cashin, and the rest is history.
Released on September 30th via Infiel Records, “King of Cups” is a twelve-track album that was recorded completely DIY in a matter of three days with a few weeks spent mixing and mastering, officially completed on Easter Sunday 2022. The album was recorded in January Man’s rehearsal space located inside the Collingwood Arts Center. The group mentioned that as strenuous as that was, it allowed them to be as creative as possible while avoiding outside critiques that could’ve damaged the group’s creative process. January Man recorded the rhythm guitars, bass, and drums live together and overdubbed the rest (vocals, solo, additional instruments, etc.) from there.
“King of Cups”, the group’s first album as January Man. Artwork by Ryn Ricco.
According to the band, the album can be described as “intense”, among other themes throughout the twelve tracks. The album has been received well by the local scene and beyond, especially with their album release show at The Ottawa Tavern back on September 30th, where most of the songs were played live for the first time. “This record is sweet, and I’m pretty blown away by the fact that different people like different songs. Maybe that’s how you know an album is good” said Baker.
Going into 2023, January Man plans to work on new music and to play shows in different cities and markets, in addition to the occasional Toledo show(s).
“King of Cups” is available on all streaming platforms. To keep up with January Man, visit linktr.ee/januaryman