Interview with Jones, rising pop contender and Sam Smith favourite
We quiz our vocals alumna Jones on songwriting, success and her tips for new artists as she gears to take on the pop mainstream with new music...
London singer songwriter and ICMP alumna Jones is a fast rising pop star and one of the industry’s most tipped musical prospects.
In a world of ever increasing turbulence and shorter audience attention spans, there’s something refreshing about her measured approach to her career, refusing to rush into releases until they’re ready despite the pressures of artistry in contemporary times.
Her graceful, modern music straddles the worlds of jazz and electronic with an injection of pop nous surefire to take her into the world of stardom in coming months. Her latest moment ‘Something ‘Bout Our Love’ is undoubtedly a hit in the making and follows in the footsteps of her much loved debut album, ‘New Skin’. With 860,000+ followers on Spotify and around 30 million streams across her top tracks, she's already a big noise - we get to know her a littel better in our new interview…
How did you first start off in music? Was there a record or person who initially inspired you to begin your musical journey?
I don't remember a time when I wasn't trying to get into music ... it wasn't really a conscious decision, more like 'I have to do this'. Along the way I found people like Marina and the Diamonds and Lykke Li very inspiring. Both strong women but totally different in sound. I've always admired intelligent songwriting.
What was the motivation to start making your own music?
I realised I could sing when I was in primary school and it's been a love/hate affair ever since then. Love affair because it's something that feels incredible and is just in me, yet it's a hate affair because of the frustration and sometimes pain you can feel along this path. Thankfully, the love was always stronger.
At what point did you realise you were onto something with your songs? Did you have a 'big break' style moment?
Playing on Jools Holland and having people like Sam Smith tweeting about my EP were pinch-myself moments. Every headline show is always so surreal and beautiful, makes me feel incredibly thankful and ecstatic."
How have you evolved as a songwriter over your various releases?
There has definitely been an evolution. From writing in a completely introverted way, afraid to share my ideas with others, unable to creatively perform if anyone was watching - to being able to be a complete open book and feel so confident in my ideas, often having to fight for them. Naturally I've opened up about more personal things in this next phase of writing and been less general.
What has been keeping you busy ?
Writing songs. I have been writing mostly in London, a little in Stockholm and this has been taking up the bulk of my time, with writing from the most honest place being my focus.
Your gig at the Omeara is coming up soon - what should fans expect?
It's been such a journey, people can expect some new songs, some insight into where they have come from and what I've been going through in life.
Obviously the music industry is changing at a rapid rate - have you any thoughts on the business? Are there plenty of opportunities for new artists?
It often does feel like the industry is over-saturated ... so many artists competing for the same platforms and opportunites. All I know is that great music always finds its way through somehow, so yes there will be opportunities for good music. And unfortunately lots of space for generic stuff too for people that view the industry just as a business and not art.
In terms of social media profiles, which one do you think is most important for young acts to be on?
I feel like the staple three are Instagram (my preferred), Twitter and Facebook. Through these you can both network, connect with people and show who you are in your own way.
What would be your top advice for new and emerging artists?
Find your story, find your style and be true to whatever that is. You will know and go with that, and keep going. Don't compare yourself to others, this will just make you feel sad and lost. Create from a place of honesty. Trust your own voice and vision."
What does the future hold for you?
That is unwritten ... but I will be putting out another record when I feel that it is perfect and will be announcing a string of shows early 2018. Next stop is London Omeara on 29th November - come and check it out!
27th June 2018
Rockwood Music Hall
New York, US
Listen to ‘Something ‘Bout Our Love’ below: