What inspired you to first start making music? And how did you come to be in your current incarnation? Or if you prefer, a brief bio about you.
Jenny performed around Montreal during University before moving to NYC in 2013 where she started as a Page at NBC and quickly worked her way up to producer in the film and television industry. In 2018 Jenny decided to take a leap of faith and pursue full time her passion for music and songwriting. Drawing on her own experiences, her songs unfold through a confessional-style delivery revealing the strength that can only come through vulnerability.
“It’s almost cathartic, sharing emotion. Being open is not an easy feat for anyone. I want people to know that these songs come from an honest place. We all struggle to find comfort in ourselves while being open to the unexpected.”
In the fall of 2018, she recorded her debut EP and began performing at notable venues around New York City including Rockwood Music Hall and The Bitter End. Jenny’s debut EP is an intimate collection of songs from years of self-reflection on her personal experience with self-doubt, regret and the search for comfort in painful seasons.
In January 2019 she released her debut single, which received wide acclaim and immediately found an international audience on streaming platforms.
Shortly after she released her debut EP in April 2019, she was invited on her first international tour in Europe and was featured on MTV and ABC. “It’s been a whirlwind journey so far. One I would never have expected to happen so quickly. I hope to continue writing music that is new and different, resonating with people around the world.”
Jenny is currently writing and recording new music with producer Andy Seltzer (Maggie Rogers, Chelsea Cutler, Valley) set for release late 2019, early 2020.
Provide us with some info about your latest release…
LATEST RELEASE – NOW WE KNOW:
This is my most honest song to date. Writing this one was different for me. I usually find a melody and the words follow, but with this song I wrote lyrics first. It’s literal. Every line is literal. As you read the words, there’s nothing poetic. It’s about self-realization, admitting to mistakes and accepting the end of a relationship.
I was working creatively with someone and we developed a close relationship. One founded on understanding and support. At the time, I was dealing with severe depression, health issues and change, which lead to mistakes I’m not proud of. I wrote this song shortly after we parted ways. At first, I was in denial and felt shame but eventually I understood. That said, I was struggling with the fact that we would never make it right.
Learning to accept that something is broken and dealing with the fallout is incredibly hard. The last line of the chorus “Now We Know” is meant to represent a sense of understanding and acceptance.
The bridge is my favourite part of the song and to me the most important. Not including lyrics was intentional because it’s a moment of self-reflection. When I wrote the song, I actually had to take a break from writing because I started to cry. I found so much strength in vulnerability and while I am incredibly scared to share all of this, I know that it’s important for everyone, not just myself, to be brave with their emotions.
Ultimately… we’re human, we’re flawed. We’ve all got things to work on, we’ve all got problems and we’ve all experienced a broken heart. It’s easier to talk about it than to keep it in and pretend like you’re doing well because that does no one any good. The first step is acceptance and you grow from there.
Which ones would you consider your main influences both music-wise & non-music-wise?
I’d say I’m influenced by a number of artists but I grew up listening to a variety of music: Fleetwood Mac, Earth Wind & Fire, Genesis, Annie Lennox, Sade, Don Henley, John Mayer
Currently I’m very much influenced by Phoebe Bridgers, Julien Baker, The Paper Kites along with modern pop artists such as Dizzy, Clairo, Maggie Rogers and The 1975.
In what way does your sound differ from the rest genre-related artists/bands and why should we listen to your music? In other words, how would you describe your sound?
My music is very much rooted in emotion. I try to create an atmosphere when I produce my sound. I want you to enter that musical space and feel, whatever that may be. I’m always evolving and always finding new ways to share my writing so I’m never going to create the same sound over and over again. You’re always going to find something new to explore.
Please name your 3 desert islands albums, movies & books…
This question is absolutely impossible BUT if I had to go with an answer…
Albums: Hats (The Blue Nile), Rumours (Fleetwood Mac), Miles Davis (Kind of Blue)
Movies: Good Will Hunting, Forrest Gump, The Holiday
Books: East of Eden (Steinbeck), Letters to a Young Poet (Rilke), The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Joyce)
Do you prefer studio or performing live and why?
I love the studio because there’s a lot of exploration musically that happens during that time. I also love seeing a song evolve from a demo or bare recording to a full studio produced track.
That said, there’s something really special about performing live where you get to connect with people in person. You get to live in the moment and share your most vulnerable self. That’s why I make music.
Is there any funny-unique story you would like to share with us, always in relation to your music ‘career’?
Nothing I can think of but I do remember my first show I ever played and that was definitely not the smoothest. Let’s just say I forgot a lot of my own lyrics.
Which track of your own would you point out as the most unique and why?
I would say lyrically Slow Burn is the most unique because there’s a lot of meaning that can be taken from it. But I would say that Now We Know musically is the most unique because of the production involved. It uses a lot of different synth sounds to create an atmosphere that I wanted to showcase.
Would you like to share with our readers your future plans?
Working on a 2020 tour right now, hoping to get out to Europe and also writing to produce another EP or record in 2020 with Andy Seltzer. Lots of exciting things on the horizon!
Free question!!! (Ask yourself a question) you wish to answer and haven’t been given the opportunity…
What do you want people to take from your music?
I want people to connect with it in a way that feels most authentic to themselves. I want it to inspire people to be open and honest with their own emotions. Music has helped me so much in finding that in myself. Being vulnerable is not easy but I believe music can really help people with that.
Photo credits: Chris O’Neill (1st one), Leo Mascaro (2nd one)
Curated by: Christos Doukakis
Connect with Jenny Kern: