• Bryon Harris

AJ Ongenae - 'Who I Used To Be'

Review by Patrick Joseph & Staff

“Who I used to be” by A J Ongenae is a catchy piece of music with pop sensibilities and heart. A static chord progression establishes a solid bedrock over which the vocal melody can evolve and grow. Rich textures of instrumentation and vocal layering give the song depth. This is music that establishes an identity immediately and then explores that space. A message of strength is ever-present in the song.

Lyrically, “Who I used to be” explores the timeless theme of love lost. “Take your time I hope you get it right, But I can't stay around until you see the light.” Ongenae’s understated vocal delivery makes these lyrics impactful. “Now I'm getting back to who I used to be, How I'm alone is still a mystery.” Rediscovering oneself after a break-up is a highly relatable theme, making this charming song even more likeable.

The arrangement of “Who I used to be” is straightforward and effective. A well-placed, quick pre-chorus adds just enough space between the verse and chorus for the vocal hook to be effective. A guitar solo adds a nice layer, while piano provides ornamentation. The song is carried by an acoustic strum pattern and an expressive lead vocal. Overall, this is a catchy song with a unique character and a cool, indie-pop vibe.

Stream on Spotify


About AJ Ongenae

AJ Ongenae is a talented artist with a passion for rock, pop and more. Hailing from Winnipeg, Canada, this charismatic singer and songwriter managed to combine stunning melodies with infectious hooks and great arrangements, in order to create a catchy, yet direct and edgy sound. It’s hard to define what genre his music belongs to, as it seems to cross the genre barriers that separate each other.

AJ Ongenae’s debut release, “Blanket of Ghosts”, is a great example of his sonic vision, and will be available to the general public Jan 24th 2020. What’s special about AJ’s sound is that he is influenced by a huge range of genres, including Rock, Pop, Metal, Country, Instrumental music and Symphonic compositions, with an incredibly open mind. Originally started as a one-off performance, AJ’s solo career has taken him to new levels over the last 4 years. Touring as far as The Netherlands, playing live radio / television gigs, also being named a top musical influencer in south Holland 2018.

AJ released his original Christmas song "Christmas in the suburbs" during holiday 2020, which became his popular song to date. His sophomore album titled "Midnight Rain" is going to be released in early 2022. With singles starting to be released in September 2021. The first single will be called "Who I used to be" which is an acoustic pop song. Updates can be found on his Instagram and YouTube accounts.


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