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13th February 2024

Interview & Editor-in-chief: Owen James Vincent

From writing slow songs to stepping into a new genre, Jewelia is an artist to keep your eyes on with her new single 'Invisible Walls' that people have already been talking about how incredible the song is and are looking forward to what she's got coming up next.

We chat to Jewelia about the inspiration behind the disco track, music videos, and her new upcoming album 'Little Wins'.

Hi Jewelia. Congratulations on your latest single ‘Invisible Wall’. How was the reaction to the release? 

Thank you very much! It was great! I’m a small indie artist on a small independent label, so I need to look at things in perspective. This release was a bit different to what I’ve done in the past (people tend to know me for slower songs), but everyone seems to love the new synth pop direction. I’ve actually had lots of comments on the spoken part on this song in particular – I suppose it’s something I haven’t shown before, but I didn’t think it was that interesting! I’m glad people love it though. We also got some great media coverage, with a video premiere from Clash and features from The Daily Star and Women in Pop among others, and a placement in an editorial playlist on Spotify, so a great start to the campaign for the new album.

The song is incredible! It has such a good beat to it and the lyrics are very catchy. After hearing this I went straight on to Apple Music and downloaded it. What inspired you to write a song like this? 

In video games, an invisible Wall is a boundary that limits where the player can go, even though there's nothing physically there to stop them. It seems like the perfect analogy for the pre-guided life pathways that society tends to force us into, but also for self-limiting thought patterns. I thought it was a cool idea, and I might have written the song at a time when I was feeling a bit trapped in terms of my life choices.

The music video is very creative with the old TV sets of footage of you. What was the inspiration behind this? And what was your favourite thing about filming this?

If you have a look on my YouTube channel, you will find plenty of music videos there; I started my musical endeavours by posting on YouTube, so video has always been a big part of it. I usually create my videos with the help of Andy Denyer, who is behind the camera (and incidentally also plays drums in the video for “Invisible Wall”), we own the equipment so generally we put in a lot of work ourselves to create visuals on a budget. As “Invisible Wall” has a retro vibe, I immediately thought “CRT TV”. I browsed eBay, paid £80 for the TV, and voila! It's amazing what can be done with a bit of creativity and editing skills. I usually edit my videos, but I have to credit Andy for this one, he did an amazing job! 

I think my favourite thing this time was that I got to do some filming myself. Since the  ‘crew’ for this shoot was me and Andy, and we are both in the video as well, he had to film me, and I had to film him. I also love dressing up for videos, and coming up with a look! 

Your album ‘Little Wins’ will be coming out in April. What can you tell us about this album? Will we be getting songs like ‘Invisible Wall’. 

All the songs on the album have a common theme: self-acceptance. We all do the best we can at a particular moment in time, with the resources we have at that moment. Those resources can mean anything: time, energy, knowledge, confidence, money, love, other people, self-belief, self-love. So really, there's no point in beating ourselves up, and instead of constantly focusing on the climb ahead, we should take some time to look back and see how far we’ve come, and learn to celebrate the little wins!

And in answer to second half of the question, yes - there will definitely be a few other upbeat tracks on “Little Wins”! 

Do you have a favourite track on this album?

“Second Best” is probably my favourite, and one of my favourites songs that I wrote.  Coming to terms with the fact that you are average is not a topic that is covered much in pop culture. If that sounds like a depressing subject to you, ask yourself why. It shouldn’t be – most of us are just like that. From a young age, we watch stories of success against all odds, while subconsciously learning to look down on the average people and their struggles – the irony being, of course, that we are them. Something is messed up here, and I thought it was worth exploring.

Have you got any role models that are in the music industry?

I don’t know if I would necessarily call them role-models, but there are definitely people who inspire me. I loved Amanda Palmer as an artist, but years ago, reading her book “The Art of Asking” had a big impact on me. I would’ve been embarrassed to ask for help beforehand, but this book made me look at the creator-fan relationship in a different way. I would’ve probably never tried crowdfunding if it wasn’t for it, so I wouldn’t have a new album to promote right now! 

Lastly, if you had the opportunity to ReVamp anything in the world. What would it be and why? 

Oh, there are so many things! The whole world is struggling right now, we have wars, climate change, living crisis, terrible governments, etc. But I’ll pick something that’s recently been on my mind: our attitude towards aging. I wish ageing was generally painted in a more positive light within society. I’m not talking only about ageism, but also about that negative attitude that is ingrained within all of us and causes us to fear the ticking of the clock as early as our twenties,  and put limits on ourselves and mental barriers that have no reason to be there.

Check out the music video to "Invisible Wall' by Jewelia.

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