It's our very first Q & A 'First Date' and it's also the debut of a new contributor to TVD, Leah Henry. —Ed.
She is huge in Sweden. Now, Jenny Wilson is ready for the US.
Jenny Wilson, founder of First Floor Power, who began her solo career in 2004, took the New York City stage twice last month. During our introduction Jenny acknowledged that her New York shows went well, the first at Union on Tuesday July 13th and the second at Pianos on Wednesday July 14th. When asked specifically about the performances Jenny says, “It was something completely new, solo, without my band, fun, very different.”
Jenny Wilson’s self-released second solo album Hardships! had its debut in the United States yesterday, August 24th.
What songs do you think they liked best?
The audience…well, I think the most popular is ‘Like a Fading Rainbow’ it’s getting some play here, and a lot through YouTube. And the next one would be ‘Only Here for the Fight’, since they can go online and download it for free.
How important is it to make it in America, is that your goal?
Very important – if you make it in America, you’re big. It is just one part of my goal, I want to spread my music, there are so many amazing bands in America - I would like to be a part of that scene.
I thoroughly enjoyed Hardships!. It felt like pop-R&B-spiritual, how would you describe this album?
Well, I would describe it like that; a mixture between new and old R&B, soul, and electronic stuff too. I wanted it to be as organic and rhythmic as possible.
I know you have a song entitled Hardships but why did you choose to name the album ‘Hardships!’ as well?
The theme is struggle, motherhood, fighting, and I am describing motherhood from a battlefield perspective. It sounds powerful to me. I am not sure what it means to you [being American] but, that was my aim. I had a lot of different working titles and this was one of the later entries.
Fun seems important in your music, how important is that in this album?
When I make them, I try to grab the feeling. I want to surprise myself, how can I describe this... I want to challenge myself, with lyrics as well. I don’t want to feel secure; I want to go out where I haven’t been before. In this album I touch on some dark topics and I add fun.
You mentioned producing earlier, and you currently run Gold Medal Recordings, how has that changed you as a musician?
To run a label… it was more… I started it to have sole control over the product. I am not ‘the business’, I am not an enthusiastic label manager, I hate all of that shit. I am a true artist. I try to do it myself as much as I can. I don’t want be a part of some major label and get lost. It’s not important to have a lot of people around, if I have to describe my idea to five different people, it doesn’t work. I try it. I decide. And I get the results. I want my music to be brave, personal.
Who/what are you listening to right now?
I am listening to a lot of Wu Tang Clan, mostly the 90's records with ODB and RZA – the dark landscape of hip hop, gospel. Also - African music from Ethiopia, Nigeria, and Mali. I love the rhythms.
Which Swedish artists are you listening to at the moment?
Oh! Have you heard of El Perro Del Mar?
No, I haven’t...
Well she is amazing, just amazing
Pop, it’s just great.
I must admit I am a big Jens Lekman fan. As Jenny corrected my terrible pronunciation of his last name (Lek-Mon) she goes on to tell me about how she toured with Jens in 2005 and how she believes him to be a brilliant artist.
This is an odd curiosity question but, do you prefer one side of your face?
Good question! I noticed that I do that, which side do I turn to again?
You have your left side to the camera.
And I don’t know why, I have this really beautiful scar on the right side of my face. After Hardships!... I will show it.
Find Jenny Wilson at her Official Website and Myspace
Jenny Wilson - Only Here for the Fight (Mp3)
Jenny Wilson - Hardships Gospel (Mp3)
Approved for download!