INTERVIEW: Jenn Bostic 1

INTERVIEW: Jenn Bostic

Nashville-based singer-songwriter Jenn Bostic has just returned to this country for an eleven date tour which starts at the Borderline in London on 26th November. Still only 27 years of age but already the proud winner of five Independent Country Music Association Awards, Bostic is probably best known for her “Jealous of the Angels”, released last year in the UK as her début single and a song which reached number one in the singer-songwriter charts. Further evidence of its popularity is the fact that the song’s accompanying video has garnered nearly a million and a half views on YouTube. God Is In The TV managed to catch up with Jenn Bostic days before her tour commenced.

GIITTV: For those who may not yet be familiar with your music, how would you describe it to others?

JB: Emotive Piano driven pop singer/songwriter with a touch of country.

GIITTV:  It is well documented the tremendous positive impact that your father had upon your early interest in music, but who or what also shaped or influenced your career?

JB: My mom is my biggest cheerleader! After we lost Dad, she encouraged my brother and I to chase our dreams. She has set an amazing example of overcoming adversity for me to follow as well. I’m also always influenced by other artists; a few of my favorites are Bonnie Raitt, Sarah McLachlan, Sara Bareilles, Marc Broussard and Ed Sheeran.

GIITTV: I read with interest and no little surprise that you grew up listening to a lot of pop music like Christina Aguilera and the Spice Girls. I suppose with your strong association with country music I kind of guessed it might have been people like Patsy Cline or Tammy Wynette or Dolly Parton. Were these people that you also listened to?  When did country music, per se, start to enter your life?

JB: I did listen to quite a bit of country growing up as well. My dad loved Emmylou Harris and my first concert was Garth Brooks. In college I sang in a country cover band which is where I really started falling in love with country music and the art of songwriting. 9 to 5 is still one of my favorite songs to cover.

GIITTV: What, if push came to shove, would be your favourite album of all time?

 JB: Wow. That’s a tough question. I can say without a doubt that my favorite song of all time is “Can’t Make You Love Me,” and Bonnie Raitt‘s version is incredible; her “Best Of” album is a great one! I also love Eva Cassidy‘s “Songbird” album and Sara Bareilles“Little Voice.”

GIITTV: You are now based in Nashville. I have heard it said that it is a very difficult town in which to “make it”. What has your experience been of living and working in that town?

 JB: I absolutely love Nashville. It feels like such a small town. I’ve got a great community there and I’m constantly encouraged and inspired by all the talent in that city. I think the definition of “making it” can vary for some people, but to have your songs heard and know that it made an impact on someone, is in my opinion the greatest feeling in the world. I have had the honor of performing on both the Grand Ole Opry and Ryman Auditorium stages in Nashville and they are both absolutely incredible venues. It was so humbling to sing from the same circle so many greats have sung from.

GIITTV: You are about to return to this country to embark upon your second UK tour this year?  First of all can you tell us a little about your jenn bosticexperience of playing here earlier on this year?

JB: I’m here! I’ve arrived in Belfast and I’ve already been welcomed with open arms. I absolutely love the people here. My first trip over was about this time last year, opening for Christian Kane. I had no idea what to expect, but wow that tour changed my life. This is my sixth trip back since then and I am so excited to be playing with a full band. I did a headline tour in Feb/March of this year with a trio which was amazing. I had so much fun and met so many wonderful people. It’s amazing that the music has brought me across the pond to see this beautiful part of the world so many times this past year.

GIITTV: Will you be playing with the same musicians as last time round?

JB: Belinda Webb will be joining me on percussion again, my band leader and keys player Alex Wright will be flying over from the States which is very exciting, and then I have two brothers Jake and Sam Rommer on electric and bass guitar. I cannot wait to share some new material as well.

GIITTV: This tour is being promoted as the Jealous tour and will, I assume, showcase a lot of material from that album but I also understand you will be performing some, as yet, unreleased songs?  Can you tell us a little bit about them? Or will we just have to wait and see?!

JB: Jealous  is such an emotional album bringing comfort and hope, but sometimes tears as well. This next record will be a bit more fun with the emotional ballads mixed in as well. I plan to share a few of the poppy love songs on the tour and cannot wait to get some feedback from the fans!

GIITTV: What are the major differences in performing here in the UK as opposed to back home in the States? Do you find, for example, that the audiences respond differently?

JB: It’s amazing to be able to play in both countries; the response has been a little more emotional here in the UK. I’ve heard so many stories from people around the world, but somehow the song has seemed to touch the UK in a more intimate way than anywhere else. The support from radio has been absolutely humbling.

GIITTV: You play eleven dates here on mainland Britain and then I notice you are back in Tennessee at the Franklin Theatre on 13th December only three days after your last show in the UK – that seems like a pretty punishing schedule. What are your thoughts ahead of this string of dates?

 JB: Playing live shows feeds my soul. Honestly, I love it. My manager is constantly telling me to “take a break,” which I’ll be doing over the Christmas Holiday and my birthday which is coming up in early January, but I honestly feel that I have the best job on the planet and nothing jennbostic5419_photo_gal_6587_photo_1828750212_lrmakes me happier than to share my songs and stories. The Franklin Theater will be a very fun show as I’ll be playing with one of my best girlfriends, Sarah Darling, as well as the amazing Matthew Perryman Jones.

GIITTV: Looking further at your upcoming shows it looks like you are taking a few days off for Christmas and then on 28th December you play the Opry at the Ryman Auditorium back in Nashville. That sounds incredible. I know you have played there before but can you tell us a little about this upcoming show?

JB: Playing the Ryman Auditorium is absolutely surreal. The first time I played the Opry was about the same time last year. The past twelve months have been the most amazing months of my musical life and I think ending the year back at the Ryman is the perfect way to celebrate that. It is after all the Mother Church of Country Music.

GIITTV: My only experience of the Ryman is from listening to Emmylou Harris’s live album with the Nash Ramblers – you can almost feel the great tradition of the place just from that record alone – what is it really like playing there?

JB: It’s the payoff moment. It makes every second of the hard work that goes into this musical journey worth it. To stand where so many greats have stood, performing my original music is such a blessing.

GIITTV: Looking ahead to 2014 what can we expect from Jenn Bostic?  What are your hopes and expectations for the New Year?

JB: I am so excited to be releasing a new album in the spring of 2014!!! I’ve been in the studio in Los Angeles working with a few different producers and I cannot wait share some of the new songs. I’m also going to be running the London Marathon on April 13, 2014 for the Whizz Kidz charity. This will be my first marathon ever so I’m very excited, as well as a little nervous.

GIITTV: Will you be making any New Year’s resolutions?

JB: Run, run, run! Preparing for the marathon will be tough work so I have a few fitness goals I’d like to achieve. I also plan to listen to my manager’s advice and take a few more vacations in 2014.

GIITTV: Many thanks for your time and trouble in answering these questions. Good luck with the tour and I shall look forward to catching you at Fibbers in York on 3rd December.

JB: Thank you so much for taking the time to interview me. God bless you!!!

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.