I would be lying to you if I said I knew a lot about the country music scene as a whole. I’d be lying even more if I said I knew about the local country music scene in Vancouver. What I do know is what a beautiful voice sounds like. Because of that latter fact I now know about the singer/songwriter Jessie Farrell. Based on Vancouver Island, the lovely songstress was kind enough to sit down with me recently to discuss her latest album Love Letter and what her plans are going forward into 2012.
With her newest album Love Letter Jessie tried a few new things this time around. “Each album holds a special place in my heart, it reminds me of the time I wrote the songs and recorded them. With Love Letter though it has a new meaning to me since I not only co-wrote it like the previous albums but I also got involved and co-produced the entire record.” Seeing an artist grow like that is what fans always hope for. To see & hear the artist you love become more involved in the creative process shows that they are dedicated to making music they will be proud of.
In another change of pace, Jessie also brought in her touring band to record the album. “I really wanted to get the guys involved this time around in the recording process. In the past I just used studio musicians and then the guys in my touring band had to learn the songs on their own. This way I find we were able to learn the songs together and we even managed to capture some of the energy we get on stage when we perform together.” This recording process however came with a few difficulties “I am based on the (Vancouver) Island and the band members are scattered all over the Lower Mainland. Some of them play in other bands, and we have families and so on so it was hard sometimes to find time to record together. But we all put the effort forth, got together and in the end we are all really proud of the record we created together.”
Jessie touched on the fact that it seems like the last few rounds in the studio they were always recording in the spring and summer months. I had to ask if that was because she did the bulk of her writing in the fall and winter “Not really. I am writing year around. My house is filled with notepads with song ideas, or lyrics on them. Like I said I am from the the (Vancouver) Island so I tend to really focus on writing on those ferry trips back and forth. Every so often I take the notes and focus on taking it from a few lyrics or melodies on paper and turning them into a song.”
With any artist in the new landscape of the current “download it for free 98% of the time” music industry, Jessie heads out on tour to grow her fan base. “Do I still get nervous? Well sorta. I have evolved my preparations before the show to a bit of a routine. I find a nice quiet place before going on stage. I do the exact same vocal warm up. I guess I kinda treat it like an athlete does before a game. I visualize how the show is going to go. I also don’t make too many changes to a show when I am on tour. I do still keep a few spaces open to be spontaneous and change it up too though.”
You can learn more about Jessie at the links below and be sure to check her out on Twitter to get all the latest updates from the studio, the road and of course the song writing sessions on BC Ferries.