‘I just feel so lucky to have the opportunity’: Student musician reaches worldwide audiences, handles fame

Abby Hopkins

When Sloan Struble released his first album on Spotify in September 2018, he had no idea that what he wrote, recorded and produced in his bedroom in Aledo, Texas, would be heard by over 350,000 people from around the world.

Professionally known as Dayglow, Struble released the indie-pop album Fuzzybrain independently and has since garnered thousands of followers across social media platforms. With increasing support and opportunities, Struble said he has learned to juggle responsibilities while maintaining sincerity and optimism in his music and performances.

“It’s very therapeutic for me to write and make music, so it really feels natural,” Struble, an advertising freshman, said. “I’m doing what my brain feels like it’s fit to do and thankfully it has turned into a career.”

Struble taught himself how to play guitar, bass, keyboard, synthesizer and drums, as well as produce and mix. When he began producing Fuzzybrain, he created every part, including the album cover and the clay art on it. Struble said its growing popularity is completely organic. “(The album’s) grown way farther than I thought it would, way faster,” Struble said. “It’s doing it on its own. I’m just sitting around and people everywhere (are) listening to it.”

Nick Wong, studio art sophomore, shot Struble’s promotional photos and has built a friendship with him through their collaborative efforts. Wong said he admires Struble’s unwavering personality and character.

“I think some artists put on a persona (to try and) communicate to their fan base,” Wong said. “But he’s just the same cordial, kind of quirky guy on stage I see as in person.”

This spring, Struble performed regularly at venues such as South by Southwest and sold out The Parish. He said these opportunities, meeting with management companies and being a full-time student have forced him to multitask.

However, he said getting noticed in public has been an encouraging experience.

“It’s an honor that people associate good feelings with what I’m doing,” Struble said. “They’re like, ‘Oh, you’re Dayglow. Your music makes me happy.’ If that’s what people think of when they see me, that’s a good place to be.”

This summer, Dayglow will tour around Texas with “aggressive elevator soul” artist Ginger Root. Next semester, Struble will withdraw from the University to begin pursuing music full-time.

“Maybe I’m just not processing it fully, but I’m really not scared,” Struble said. “I’m more excited than anything because it’s so obviously what I want to do. I just feel so lucky to have the opportunity right now.”

Struble’s mother Kristy said his family is looking forward to following his musical career as he pursues what’s next.

“I’m really not fearful about anything with him,” Kristy Struble said. “We’ve been able to see his maturity about how he’s handled a lot of different situations and I’m not worried.”

Struble said his ultimate goal is to spread optimism, and he wants his audience to see that while he loves music, it’s not his ultimate purpose.

“I’m really passionate about (music) and I work really hard to get these things going, but there’s more to life than just being an artist and walking around with your arms crossed,” Struble said. “If I can (show optimism) and be that as a musician, I’ll feel like I had good success for however long it lasts.”