DIARY - 20 AUGUST 2013 - JASMINE RAE INTERVIEW
TURNS TEARS INTO TUNES
here's the first song that you'll never hear/ the first of mine that will
not reach your ears/ always knew that I'd write one for you/ but never
thought I'd ever face my fear/ of the first song that you'll never hear."
- First Song- Jasmine Rae-Briana Lee.
singers have long harvested hay from heartbreak in their tear stained
So when young Victorian chanteuses Jasmine Rae and Briana Lee suffered
premature deaths of their dads they found solace in a special tribute
They wrote evocative paean First Song for Jasmine's third album
If I Want To.
Rae, just 26, also wrote another song Just Don't Ask Me How I Am
about the death of her dad last year at 56 from bowel cancer.
The singer, touring nationally to promote her Nashville produced disc,
found mutual therapy in the Goulburn Valley citrus and dairy belt
in northern Victoria.
"We wrote the First Song the week after my dad's funeral,"
Jasmine told Nu Country in a call from the home she grew up in with
her close knit family in outer northern Melbourne suburb Fawkner.
up to Briana's home in Shepparton. It was very much something I felt I
had to do - write it with her. We had never written together. I knew her
and really liked her music. We met at a wedding. She told me she lost
her dad just months before. When my dad passed away I immediately knew
who I had to write this with - Briana. It was really therapy. Her dad
was about the same age as my dad. It was really special to write that
with someone who is in a similar situation. You're not making up the situation
in your head. This is exactly how it is."
I'm lonely and I'm weary/ and I'm all torn up inside/ there are moments
I feel hopeless/ like I'm just biding my time/ and there's nothing I could
tell you/ to help you understand/ so just don't ask me how I am."
- Just Don't Ask Me How I Am -Jasmine Rae-George Teren.
shared her grief with Nashville hit writer George Teren when they wrote
Just Don't Ask Me How I Am - a song that started as a poem.
"A lot of sad things happening in my life when my dad had been diagnosed
with cancer," Jasmine revealed of her father who operated motor mechanic,
fuel injection and panel beating businesses.
was helping to care for him. I think it was inspired by something
my mum said. She said 'you get exhausted but you want to carry on.'
Most of the sad songs on this album are inspired by that. He had just
turned 56 and had only 11 months warning. At the 11 months-time he
and I were still jogging together. We thought it would be a much longer
process than 11 months - it's very much about early detection. We
did lots of exercise and swimming. It's very much about getting check-ups
because it's a hereditary thing but we didn't know. I wish I had known
that before - he could have started getting checks when he was 40."
Rae poured her heart into those sad songs she boomeranged with joyous
tune My Daddy's Name - penned with tobacco chewing Nashville hit
writer Jamie Paulin.
"It's less about bashing on the old boyfriend but more being proud
of who you are," Rae said of the song penned with Paulin with whom
she wrote Sure Thing for her second album Listen Here.
"It's less about how much he's annoyed you."
at me you think I'd be/ the girl with a guy who's nice and sweet/ and
don't you know I'd be her if I could/ but I'm a sucker for a tall, dark,
flick-a-cigarette man/ ramblin', gamblin', getting what he can man/ I
don't know why, but the bad boys get me good." - Bad Guys Get
Me Good - Jasmine Rae-Shannon Wright-Jamie Floyd.
mood swings with a little help from Dancing With The Stars winner
Kellie Pickler and a nephew of Georgian superstar Alan Jackson with whom
she shares billing next month at the CMC Rocks North Queensland festival
recorded Why'd Do You Tie The Knot - penned by Adam Wright
and singing spouse Shannon - and wrote Bad Boys Get Me Good
with Shannon and Jamie Floyd.
"I met Kellie Pickler through my producer Luke Wooten,"
the singer explained.
also produced her album 100 Proof. I got to hang out with
her. She was the most wonderful person so when it came to singing
on my record she said yes before we even asked the question. She
was really nice - it was just before she was asked to be part of
Dancing With The Stars.
She had been dancing in the studio for eight hours a day. She's
making a new album now."
So how did
Jasmine hook up with Adam and Shannon who also record as The Wrights?
"It was through an ABC connection, not through Alan Jackson,"
"The idea for the song came here in Australia and then I refined
it - it was just an afternoon job. There were three of us - myself Shannon
Wright and Jamie Floyd whom I hadn't written with before. I hadn't done
a three way write with three girls before but I thought this is the best
time to talk about bad boys - we didn't go into it in detail about who
had the most experience with bad boys."
Rae discovered Why'd You Tie The Knot after seeing Shannon Wright
play the Station Inn, Nashville.
"When she sang that song I knew I had to record it," Jasmine
"It was the only song on album I didn't have a hand in writing. I
loved it. I only heard it once but months later I still had it in my head."
VALLEY BROKEN BRIDGES
door slams, its 3am/ this one bridge town is sleeping/ big deep breath,
key in ignition/ she counts her blessings, but they won't listen/ it's
time to let those broken bridges burn/ it was just one night, little too
much wine/ that boy don't care what he left behind/ mama prays it stays
a secret/ daddy's crying, "You can't keep it"/ she won't walk
the path they've chosen/ she won't fix a bridge that broken." - Broken
Bridges - Jasmine Rae-Tamara Stewart-Drew McAlister.
have to look as far for social comment tune Broken Bridges - a
song that shares a theme with John Prine's Unwed Fathers and Pistol
Annies singer Angaleena Presley's Knocked Up, recorded here by
wrote it with Tamara Stewart, who shares Goulburn Valley citrus
roots with Briana, and Narrabri born singer Drew McAlister.
"It's not something that happened to any one of us and it's
not based on a particular town," Rae said of the song about
a young country girl deserted by the father of her child.
"It's more about what would have happened if this was you -
would you have the support of your community? We are lucky we do
have that sort of support - the writing of the song is like exploring
what if we weren't so lucky. I haven't written too many songs about
a woman having a baby - or in the third person before - for some
reason. It was really good to explore that.
It's a bit about guys not taking responsibility, very much sympathetic
to the woman's point of view. Who knows if she was terrible to the
boyfriend or not - it just says he left her and she has to deal
with the consequences. It explores girl power."
power is something Rae enjoyed in songs written with fellow Victorian
songstresses Robyn Payne and Anna Tirotta.
But it was
with former Baillie & The Boys duo Kathie Baillie & Michael Bonagura
that she wrote These Hands.
"I met them through a friend of (former producer) Mark Moffatt's,"
"They had shown my video to Michael Bonagura - one of Baillie's boys
and Alyssa Bonagura's father. She's a well-known songwriter in Nashville.
She wrote I Make My Own Sunshine that Chelsea Basham recorded and
a Pussy Cat Dolls single. We got to write a really nice love ballad -
it was cool, nice to do that. Baillie & The Boys recently got together
for a 21 year anniversary tour."
can pack all your things/ and say that we're through/ say whatever you
need/ to make it easy on you/ just don't say we can still be friends/
I've already got plenty of them/ I'm gonna love you If I want to/ I'm
gonna need you if I need to/ no, you can't tell me what to do/ I'm gonna
want you." - If I Want To - Jasmine Rae-Bob DiPiero.
wrote her title track single with Bob DiPiero - former husband of
singer Pam Tillis - and filmed the video at a Freshwater home on Sydney's
"We came up with the theme in the studio while we were writing,"
"I normally take an angry approach to break-up songs. This is
not an angry approach - more about owning the fact that you are still
in love with that person, thinking of different ways to describe the
break-up. I hadn't met Bob before the session. I had seen him on the
Country Music Channel in his writer specials. I knew of him and heard
many of his songs. We didn't talk about his years married to Pam Tillis.
We did the video in a beautiful house at Freshwater where all the
furniture was pretty much handmade."
Rae also wrote More Over Than This with veteran Blue Mountains
tunesmith Alan Caswell.
another sad song," Jasmine recalled.
came up with in the car on the way to the co-write. I said let's write
it. I go through enough break-ups in my life - it's very much a song about
a break-up and feeling lonely about that and you need to move on. It's
a cool analogy."
She also wrote One Guy, One Girl with Troy Kemp of McAlister Kemp.
"It's a happy song about finding someone, it makes you feeling a
whole better that when you're not with them," Jasmine confessed.
"It was Troy's idea but I really jumped on it. That was a lot of
fun - he had a whole lot of ideas. He's a very creative guy. I've had
some pretty cool love stories in my life."
N ROLL TOWN
my head on a rolling stone/ pay for a bed to rest my bones/ I thumbed
my way from the baggage claim/ for just one night here on your stage/
and call it home/ 'Cause I get my kicks in a rock n roll town/ I make
my cash then I drink it down/ I live my life like it won't come twice/
sing my cowboy songs/ and get my kicks in a rock n roll town." -
Rock N Roll Town - Jasmine Rae- Rob Draper.
wrote Rock N Roll Town with fellow Telstra Road To Tamworth graduate
wrote with Rob Draper who was one of the contestants on the Telstra
Road To Tamworth the year after I won," Jasmine said.
"He's got a big property at Straths Creek off the Hume Highway.
I brought my dog out there - we wrote it out on the front porch. It
was great to write from a different perspective about live music.
I have never written about how much I love playing music live and
how much music means to me so it was cool to be able to write about
Rae also wrote Lazy Boy with long-time pal Robyn Payne.
"I write with her quite a lot," Rae revealed.
"I was going to have a whole horn section on this song - trumpets
and everything. That's how we made the demo. I took it to Luke Wooten
and he took it to this complete other level. The thing that annoys
you most about a lazy boy is the thing that is the most endearing
- you don't give me much but don't give me no reason to leave. You're
too lazy to be bad to me so maybe we should stay together."
wrote I'm Your Girl with Anna Tirotta.
"I met Anna when I was 14 years old," Rae recalled.
"She was like in a function band. I started gigging when I was 14
as a solo act with backing track and looked up to her. She gave me a call,
she's not a well-known writer but I've never been so confident in a song
before. It was mostly her idea. We wrote it at her place in South Melbourne."
Jasmine launched her album at Rooty Hill RSL on August 3 before playing
Gympie Muster, CMC Rocks North Queensland and Queenscliff music festival
But it's unlikely she will emulate fellow singer Jayne Denham and have
former Prime Minister Julia Gillard filmed at a press conference in front
of her CD launch poster at Rooty Hill.
"I'm also looking forward to playing Queenscliff," Jasmine revealed.
"The album is country but there's also blues and R & B - you
don't have to be a diehard country fan to enjoy it."
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