Mon, 20 Feb 2012 12:19:20
Jessarae soars on his new album, Pilot.
It's a heartfelt and hypnotic pop record that's got just the right amount of edge that blasts off on the wings of Jessarae's inimitable voice. Even though he's young, he's also got some incredible stories to tell.
In this exclusive interview with ARTISTdirect.com editor in chief Rick Florino, Jessarae discuses Pilot and so much more.
Did you approach Pilot with one vision?
Yes and no. I've always been into records that are great bodies of work. Those are the kinds of albums I want to do for my career. That's also how I figured I'd differentiate myself from a lot of other young artists. They're more single-driven. I wanted to create a whole record that's easy to listen to from beginning to end. However, the album consists of stuff that came out of me at one specific time in my life. There are songs I knew I wanted to be on there. Others, like "Tangerines", give it a lighter feel.
What's the story behind the title track?
I've always been a big Radiohead fan, and I love how they always end their records with something special. That's what I wanted to do with that song. It really came together before I had it in the studio. I recorded the album the live, and I wanted to show people what kind of artist I am and what I could do. Of course, we did some stuff afterwards. However, the meat of it was all done then and there.
Where were you coming from lyrically?
There were a lot of influences. Most of it is about my life. Some of it is being a teenager and all that. Parts of it were about my brother and my parents' relationship. I'm perceptive and pick up on things in other people's lives. I get inspired to write that way too. My biggest concern is I just want to play music for the rest of my life. This is one side of me. That's a reason I named the record Pilot. When a TV show comes out, they call the first episode a "Pilot" because it's the beginning. It's like testing the waters. That's what I wanted. The last song is like a new direction. It's not necessarily a new direction though.
Is it important for you to tell stories with the songs?
I love that stuff. I actually have some ideas for the future that really focus on that. I love when records can really get you immersed in a story. That stuff inspires me.
What are some of your favorite movies?
I like Quentin Tarantino's directing—so a lot of his movies. I like music documentaries like It Might Get Loud and other behind the scenes stuff too.
Have you heard Jessarae yet?