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Makin Waves Song of the Week: "Intrusive Thoughts" by Juliana Frangella

By Bob Makin

originally published: 04/07/2023

Makin Waves Song of the Week: "Intrusive Thoughts" by Juliana Frangella

“Intrusive Thoughts,” the title track of 18-year-old singer-songwriter Juliana Frangella’s debut album produced by great Jersey singer-songwriter-guitarist Mike Montrey is the Makin Waves Song of the Week. PHOTO BY JEFF CRESPI

With the title track, young singer-songwriter-guitarist Juliana Frangella sums her brand new debut album, “Intrusive Thoughts,” quite nicely.

The pensive but imaginative track is the Makin Waves Song of the Week.

As the Makin Waves Song of the Week, “Intrusive Thoughts” also can be heard between 6 and 8 p.m. on April 7 on “Radio Jersey” at If you miss it, you can tune in any time in the archives at The Penguin or MixCloud.

“I wrote ‘Intrusive Thoughts’ in the middle of the night, sometime in July of 2022, a day or two before it was recorded,” said the 18-year-old Juliana. “I had just thrown a pool party for the start of summer in an attempt to snap out of a funk I'd been in — the same funk I'd been in since I started writing the album — and I realized I was chronically bored. Despite having all my friends around me and the lovely atmosphere, my mind was elsewhere that night and every night before it. I could feign apathy all I wanted, but I knew exactly what my ideal situation for that summer was. I was just too much of a perfectionist to risk what I had to risk — my feelings, my sanity, my good judgment — to bring it about. Still, I was plagued with thoughts of ‘what if?’ and all kinds of imaginary scenarios in which I would act totally out of character and say exactly what I wanted to say, uninhibited by the consequences. I was tortured by the fact that just one phone call had the potential to upend everything, for better or for worse, and so instead of making the call, I wrote the song. And that was enough to satisfy me … at least for a week or so …

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“I chose ‘Intrusive Thoughts’ as the title track because it all came full circle in my mind when I finished writing the song,” she continued. “Every song on the album really is just an intrusive thought, bottled and made into something hopefully more pleasant than just a bothersome notion brewing in my mind. In addition to the fact that I ‘really need to stop talking,’ the resolution that I come to at the end of the album is that none of what I had been agonizing over was all that serious. And I don’t mean that those feelings weren't real or that they never mattered at all. I simply mean that those feelings have become so much more than the situations they arose from, as they led me to write these songs.

“With two years left of my teenage experience, I can say that this has been a time of extremes. Where the good moments are all enchantment and bliss, and the bad, utter agony. Making this album has been a means of self-reflection, and I know that my mind is at it’s absolute most chaotic, now, at 18, than it ever will be again. All I can hope for, now that it’s going out into the world, is that ‘Intrusive Thoughts’ captured this chaos authentically, before it all calms down.”

The title track was preceded by two singles: “Put the Pen Down” and “Did I Write You?,” which also was made into a fun video that depicts how school sucks.

The “Intrusive Thoughts” LP was produced, recorded and mixed by the great Jersey singer-songwriter-guitarist Mike Montrey at Retromedia Sound Studios in Red Bank, where it also was mastered by Adam Vacarelli.

Joining Juliana on vocals, rhythm Guitar, Wurlitzer and synthesizer and Mike on lead guitar, bass, Wurlitzer, and Hammond B3 is veteran drummer-percussionist Brian Prokop. They will celebrate the release of the LP with a live performance of it on April 7 at The Chubby Pickle in Highlands.

“It's really good stuff,” Mike said. “It will stack up against anything else.About working with Mike, Juliana added, “Aside from being an educational and developmental asset to my musical endeavors, working with Mike has honestly been the most fun I have ever had with a music teacher, or more accurately, mentor. Not only is Mike an amazingly patient and effective teacher, he is also an unbelievably talented guitarist, vocalist, and songwriter himself. Going to see him play in The Mike Montrey Band has helped me to figure out that playing music is what I want to do. Not to mention, The Mike Montrey Band rocks!

“By far, the best part about working with Mike is that he gives me the room to express myself in my own way,” she continued. “He helps me to consolidate my ideas without ever changing them forcibly, and he offers his own insight with genuine care about the project; even when I’m bringing him songs I wrote about ‘pretty, pretty boys.’ If I hadn’t brought these songs to Mike, I know I would not have been able to create a final project that so closely resembles the vision I’ve had for it. And though I am sad to have finished working on this album with him, I can’t wait to see what we come up with in the future.”

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Juliana also will play Manalapan Day at the township recreation center on June 17.

Look for a Makin Waves Album of the Month review of “Intrusive Thoughts” on April 19 here at New Jersey Stage.

And in the meantime, visit

Bob Makin has produced Makin Waves since 1988. Follow Makin Waves on Facebook and contact Bob at



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