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Jamie Jones

Jamie JonesDate of Interview: July 3 2009Jamie Jones is a self-proclaimed Mutt. Not to be confused with gospel singer Jamie Jones or DJ Jamie Jones, this Jamie Jones is a young woman with a lot of soul, and pop, and even some R&B. She also has her heart set on music, and wants to use her gift to inspire others to lift themselves up to the highest level of their own talent, whatever it may be. "I'm goofy, I'm fun, I'm just like every other girl out there except that my talent is that I can sing, and I'm just hoping to spread the message." So here is Jamie's message, in her own words.

Angela Thor - Where did you get the title "Celebrity Music"?

Jamie Jones - Ever since I was a little girl, I've always sung in the mirror and pictured myself being a celebrity. But to me, it's not about just the fame; I think it's important for an artist to have a message, and if you're on celebrity status, then you have thousands and thousands of people listening to you. My whole slogan is "If you have a thousand people listening to you, what are you going to say?". I think celebrity gives you that title, that chance. But then, music is my passion, so I just kind of put the two together. For anybody else that's working hard towards something, it can be a celebrity and whatever their field is, whether it be blogging, whether it be actress, whether it's an engineer, be the best at whatever it is you're doing.

AT - You're music is attractive to the younger female audience, but I assume you're also looking towards a broader audience.

JJ - Yeah, because of my ethnic background, but I'd like to think that my music reaches a broad audience. I have a little something for everybody, I hope.

AT - You helped coproduce the CD. Why did you want to get so hands-on on your first CD?

JJ - I think because it's important for me, if my name is going to be on something, I would rather be a part of it, instead of just being a little piece of the puzzle that makes everything move. I wanted to really get involved. If I'm going to sing the songs, I wanted to make sure that I felt the songs. If I'm spreading a message, I want to make sure that it's my message and not anyone else's message. I think if I'm going to spread a message, then it just needs to be genuine.

AT - When you were working on it, what sounds did you particularly listen for?

JJ - I have a lot of inspiration by listening to Celine Dion, Madonna, Cindy Lauper, but then again, I grew up in Upstate NY from about half of my life, maybe from about birth to twelve years old, so I was very much into the Cindy Laupers and the Celine Dions; eighties babies, eighties rock, especially, Journey, Styx, all of those types of bands and music, that genre especially. And then when I moved to North Carolina, it was more south, more southern music and I started getting into R&B, soul, and rhythmic and blues through R&B. It was just one genre to the next; two very different genres, and I kind of fused both of them together, if that makes sense.

AT - What particularly attracts you to, say Madonna or Mariah Carey, as far as their music goes?

JJ - I think they are icons, and because I think that it's important for anyone striving to be the best, then you need to study the best, you need to study the greats. And Mariah Carey and, I consider Beyonc one of the best in this day and age, their music just reaches out. They're not afraid to take risks and not only that, the concepts and their material is positive. And that's my whole thing; I'm a positive writer, I'm a positive thinker, therefore, my music is also going to be positive.

AT - You dance as well as sing. Do you have any particular dance influences?

JJ - I love Janet Jackson for her dancing, and Jennifer Lopez, especially. I think they're great performers.

AT - What is your live show like?

JJ - I would say full of attitude. Let's just say if you were deaf, and could only see, I would say you would be just as fulfilled as if you could hear, just by looking.

AT - You've opened for a wide variety of acts, from Michael McDonald to Erykah Badu. Do you adapt your opening act depending on who you are opening for?

JJ - The only thing that I would change, since I have more pop songs and I have more urban songs, now they all make sense together, but some may be a little more urban than pop or a little more pop than urban, then it all depends upon the audience. If I'm going to have a more pop crowd, then I make sure I pull my more pop songs. I definitely don't change who I am. I'll still dress the way I want to dress; my image. It just really depends on the crowd that makes me figure out what songs I'm going to sing; helps me to decide.

AT - Did you ever have a plan B in case performing didn't work out?

JJ - Oh yeah, I'm very organized. I always think "just in case." I've always had a passion for law; paralegal studies was what I wanted to get into and then work my way up, go to law school, that whole thing. But then, I really love psychology and analyzing, helping with families, married couples, that type of thing.

AT - You're also working with the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. What got you involved in that?

JJ - Growing up, I actually witnessed it; I saw it; on a couple of occasions, was even involved. So, I think, even especially after the whole Rihanna and Chris Brown thing, it started to surface to everyone else. It happens a lot, a lot, even in schools. I think it's one out of five relationships in schools are abusive relationships and people don't know that, and girls, now, need to feel supported, especially in those abusive relationships; someone has their back.

AT - What kind of work do you do with the Coalition?

JJ - Right now, we just started. When I had my album release party, we really joined with them. We're trying to have everyone donate a dollar and we're going to raffle off a Mustang, 2010, fully loaded, to everyone who donates a dollar.

AT - Are you touring clubs or larger venues?

JJ - There might be an east coast tour, so we'll do a lot of locations up and down the east coast, and then we were talking about later, putting together a college tour, and that's going to be more reaching out to not just the east coast but really spreading across the country. We'll see!

By Angela Thor - Juggling multiple hats, I'm a librarian who writes about music, interviews the little guy, copyedits, and still finds time to aggravate my family.  



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