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Introducing: Jade Jackson

Written by Megan Snell / November 02, 2017

Ahead of her headline show at The Slaughtered Lamb, London this month, we caught up with rising country-rock sensation Jade Jackson to discuss her debut album 'Gilded', her live shows and more...

HEY JADE! WHERE ARE YOU IN THE WORLD TODAY AND WHAT ARE YOU UP TO?

I’m currently in Los Angeles at the Anti offices!

YOUR MUSIC ISN'T BOUND TO A PARTICULAR GENRE - TO US THERE'S ELEMENTS OF COUNTRY, ROCK AND PUNK IN THERE... WHERE DO YOU TAKE YOUR INFLUENCES FROM?

I get influences for the music that I create from a lot of different places. I grew up primarily on early country and punk music like Hank Williams, Johnny Cash, Echo & the Bunnymen, the Smiths, The Gun Club, Tammy Wynette, and George Jones. That mix of artists is what inspired me to want to be a songwriter and create.

YOU RELEASED YOUR DEBUT ALBUM 'GILDED' IN MAY! CAN YOU WALK US THROUGH THE PROCESS OF MAKING THE RECORD? WHERE DID YOU WRITE AND RECORD THE SONGS? HOW LONG HAS IT BEEN IN THE MAKING?

I wrote my record Gilded with the help of my band; Andrew Rebel on guitar, Jake Vukovich on bass, and Tyler Miller on drums. I would write a lot of songs, bring them into our rehearsal, and the guys would make them come to life. There are a couple of co-writes on the album; I did a co-write with Jake, one with Tyler, and also a co-write with our producer, Mike Ness, who we’ve been lucky enough to work with. All the songs on the album except “Troubled End” I wrote in the last 5 years, but “Troubled End” I wrote when I was 15 years old. It was on this old demo that Mike heard and he wanted to re-work it so it’s on the album as a co-write. Most of the songs I wrote in my bedroom; except “Motorcycle” I wrote in my car, “Good Time Gone” while I was in the passenger seat and “Bridges” when I was in the backseat of my parent’s car. So, either in a car or in my bedroom!

THE RECORD WAS PRODUCED BY SOCIAL DISTORTION FRONTMAN MIKE NESS. WERE YOU A FAN OF HIS BEFORE HE ASKED TO WORK WITH YOU? WHAT DO YOU THINK HE BROUGHT TO THE TABLE THAT WASN'T THERE BEFORE?

I’ve been a fan of Social Distortion and Mike Ness since I was a kid. My dad would play his records and CDs at home all the time. When I got the opportunity to work with him I felt like it wasn’t real. When he called me to meet up and I found out he wanted to produce an album for me I didn’t think it was real because he is one of my heroes. He brought so much to the table for this album, he was hands on with the songs and the craftsmanship of them. Mike helped get my career going and I just appreciate everything that he’s done.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR SONGWRITING PROCESS! DO THE LYRICS OR MUSIC COME FIRST, OR DOES IT EVOLVE DIFFERENTLY FOR EACH SONG? DO YOU WRITE FROM PERSONAL EXPERIENCE?

My song writing process is never the same; I know some writers have a specific desk they go sit at and have this routine but for me it just happens. It’s more of an involuntary feeling that flows out and I grab paper or an envelope or anything that’s close. I also use my cell phone which is handy to type lyrics and record melodies.

YOU'RE HEADING TO LONDON FOR A HEADLINE SHOW AT THE SLAUGHTERED LAMB ON 13TH NOVEMBER! FOR ANYONE THAT HASN'T SEEN YOU BEFORE, HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR LIVE SHOW?

So, since we’ll be playing Europe for the first time and I’m sure many of you haven’t seen us live, I’ll give you a little insight! We just had our first national tour with Social Distortion, my band and I all agree that our favourite part of touring is performing. Everything else that happens when you’re on the road is worth it no matter what happens once you get on stage. We’re up there stoked to be playing together performing the songs for all of our fans!

WHEN YOU GET UP ON STAGE, HOW MUCH OF WHAT YOU'RE PUTTING ACROSS IS YOURSELF, AND HOW MUCH IS A PERSONA? DO YOU FEEL LIKE SOMETHING TAKES OVER WHEN YOU GET UP IN FRONT OF AN AUDIENCE?

When I’m performing, I definitely feel like I get into this unique zone. I know that I do because often times when we’re done playing I have to ask my guitar player “Hey, what just happened?” It seems like I go into this different world and when I come out I wonder “Did we play the songs?”. I think a lot of performers have that, where they go into this other world on stage and then come back after.

WHAT'S THE DAILY ROUTINE FOR A GIG DAY? DO YOU HAVE ANY PRE-GIG RITUALS TO WARM YOU UP FOR SHOW? WALK US THROUGH IT...

On show days it’s hard to say what our ritual is because usually we’re driving from one city to the next. In general, I’d say our ritual is to find the venue, do the soundcheck, and then find something to eat. For me personally, I like to start warming up my voice anywhere from 15 to 45 minutes before I go on. It depends on how I’m feeling. I used to have a crazy ritual! Having a little bit of touring under my belt has made me more flexible. If I’m tired I’ll drink coffee, if I’m stressed I’ll have camomile tea. Whatever I need to do to be ready for the stage.

FINALLY, WHAT OTHER ACTS ARE INSPIRING YOU RIGHT NOW - BOTH ON RECORD AND IN THE LIVE SPHERE?

Yesterday I listened to Margo Price. I’ve been a fan of her sound and her music but I actually sat down and listened to her and I was very inspired. She’s an amazing artist and after I heard the song “All American Made”, which is just an amazing song, I looked her up and saw some of her live performances. I love how real she is. As for other artists, I’d say Nikki Lane is one that I really look up to along with Mike Ness of Social Distortion of course. Watching him every night on tour was really inspiring for myself and my band.

THANKS JADE!

Jade Jackson calls into The Slaughtered Lamb, London on 13th November! Grab tickets by clicking that big red button below!

FIND JADE JACKSON TICKETS
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