Currently based in Toronto, Canada, Jess McAvoy has spent the better part of the last 15 years as a professional singer/songwriter and performer. The self managed entertainer has built her brand from the ground up, and coordinated most of her multi-faceted career on her own. She is also an established visual artist, a journalist, and as of recent times, an actor. She is currently working on material for her new musical project, and deciding what to do with many others. –From http://jessmcavoy.com/
The Wall-Nuts are appreciators of many inspired and innovative musos, and Jess is one of the best! She’s worked with Wally and been a long-time friend. Recently a few of our members submitted questions for Jess on her career, moving from Melb and her upcoming projects. Enjoy!
*update: check out our admin Cris’ review of Jess’ October 2012 set at The Bitter End in NYC!
Q: How many instruments do you play and what is your favorite meal?
I play guitar reasonably well, Piano enough to write on, Drums when I get the chance, bass if I’m asked to, and Vocals all the time.
Food? Whatever I’m offered. But I do love anything cooked with love and care.
Q: How does music change or affect your personal life? Is life difficult as a musician?
That’s a multi tiered question. Music has changed my life in so many wonderful ways. I have met some of the most inspiring and pivotal people in my life through being a live performer and touring artist. A global family of like minded creatives is more than anyone could expect!
However, yes, it can be challenging. Having something central to your life that comes before any lover or partner can be confronting to ones significant other.
Q: Coming to tour the US? Any insider details!
Actually I just booked a show in NYC for the 15th of October. At my favorite Rock and Roll club the Bitter End!! I play there pretty often, and I am hoping to tour the states mid next year. Don’t worry, I’ll be telling everyone.I’ve already committed to touring to Utah
(ha ha Jess ;} – Paige)
Q: What’s the must see music spot when visiting Meblourne/AUS?
Depends on what you like! There are lots of different kinds of venues. One that I love is the Corner Hotel. It’s the largest medium sized venue, and they have a lot of high quality touring acts.
The Empress Hotel was the first venue I ever played at when I moved to Melbourne, and it’s a cute little bar. I’ll always have a soft spot for it. There are so many venues and a lot of them cater to a specific audience.
Q: How many tattoos and what are the meanings behind them?
I think I have about 10 tattoos and they all have very specific, drawn out meanings behind them. I guess a few of my favorites, I have a willy wagtail on my left ankle- my best foot forward. When I was in Perth writing As The Sun Falls, it was a very lonely time for me. Wagtails are more prominent in Western Australia and they are lone hunters. Very brave. So my willy became my totem animal to keep me safe when I am feeling lonely.
The symbol on my right arm that I have used as my Henduwin Logo is to remind me that I am a strong and powerful creative woman.
Then there’s orchids growing up the back of my legs to keep me grounded… the list goes on.
Q: What was the biggest adjustments moving to Canada?
The fact that people didn’t understand what I was saying! Every day I come across a word or two that no – one understands. I’ve adapted, a lot, and I have some hybrid dialect going on, but I get a lot of funny looks from Canadians.
The biggest adjustment really was the subtle differences that remind you that you are very very far away from home. Light Switches. Toilet flushers. The fact that Canadians WASTE WATER.
Q: Is Wally cute or are we just nuts? ;}
Oh he’s cute. He’s handsome, gracious and compassionate. Very, very easy to love on all levels.
Q: Any advice for struggling musicians?
Build your community. Keep building your community. Treat everyone with respect, and find a few solid mentors that you trust. Build your community.
Q: How are your new surroundings changing your work?
I want to write a winter record. And it’s time to ROCK. Also, I am looking forward to writing more open, empowered work. It’s interesting what a major shift and a new country will do to make you feel more brave.
Q:What are the things that inspire you most when song writing?
Natural light. Waiting for people. I can’t write in dark rooms. I tend to write my best work when I have 10 minutes to spare when I am waiting for someone to turn up. Also, all of my songs are from personal experience. I can’t write from imagination, only from my heart. I need to be connected to the song.
Q: Would The Sailor ever be released as a duet single?
I probably should! Perhaps I can record it with Wally when we work together next year. That’s in the works.
Q: Upcoming plans and exciting developments you’d like to share?
Yes. Very exciting. I am working on a new project that will be heavier- funkier, dancier, and more pop. I’ll still do Jess McAvoy, but I will be doing something else too.
I’ll keep you in the loop.
~~~ Thanks Sistah~~~