This week’s conversation is with Aaron Bruno, best known as the founder and lead singer of AWOLNATION.

Formed in 2010, AWOLNATION crafted one of the most influential songs in years with the chart-topping, record-breaking track ‘Sail’.

The first single off the gold-certified full-length debut Megalithic Sympothy, ‘Sail’ was certified 6x platinum in the US and holds the record for the most weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 chart by an independent artist, the second longest for any artist.

Sail had a profound impact on me.

We talk about that in the podcast – how his music helped me get the vibe right for a mindset training project that I was working on.

It’s amazing how music can do that. The same song can mean so many different things to so many different people.

Different emotions, feelings, memories – and that’s something we discuss in this conversation – why music means so much to Aaron and why he’s so passionate about it coming from an authentic place.

It’s clear how much Aaron loves music, but he wasn’t always destined for stardom.

He was a member of multiple bands that never made it and reached the point where others around him thought he should give it up.

Think about that as you listen to this conversation.

How well are you connected to what matters most to you – to the inner ache, that burning ache – and if you are – are you willing to give up just about everything else for it?

“I’d rather fail trying something new, innovative, and forward thinking musically than copy someone else just to have a hit song, and that’s a really big deal to me.”

In This Episode:

  • Fan of 80’s music (“The Golden Era of Pop”) and the pop culture of the 1950’s
  • Started his first band, “The Ice Monkeys” at age 12
  • Why he has an aversion to social media and our dependence on digital devices, cares more for simpler times
  • Why music is the force that drives him
  • How AWOLNATION gets ready to perform in concert
  • Why he’s so comfortable performing in front of large crowds
  • His hunger to express music in the most authentic way possible
  • What made AWOLNATION’s music different
  • The making of the hit song “Sail”
  • How he looks at mastery
  • The moments where he’s most at peace
  • The most important mental skill


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Founder and Lead Singer at

Aaron Bruno is an American singer, songwriter, musician and multi-instrumentalist, who is best known as the founder and lead singer of AWOLNATION.