Jacob Lee familee rejoice! Not too long ago, the Australian singer/songwriter has launched two new tracks, “Easier” and “Break My Heart Again (Acoustic),” which contact on love and heartbreak in a brand new approach. These tracks observe the discharge of “Don’t Forget Me” and “You Were Right,” Lee’s first songs of 2021, launched late summer season.
The discharge of “Easier” and “Break My Heart Again (Acoustic)” come earlier than Lee’s third album and have been set forward of his 2022 Break My Coronary heart Once more Tour. The tour, with a number of offered out dates, has been abruptly cancelled due “new regulations put in place in various areas throughout Europe & the UK“. Lee and his team will continue pushing to reach Europe/UK sooner than later!
We got to sit down for a long awaited chat with Jacob to discuss his solo career, how he handled life throughout covid, and his new NFT project.
Let’s take it back to the beginning; you were a contestant on The Voice in 2014, where you made it to the top 6 of will.i.am’s team. How has that helped you in your solo career?
Jacob: I kind of have mixed feelings about The Voice, though I am glad that I did it. Prior to The Voice all I’d done was perform in cafes & clubs, which meant always playing to people half-engaged. There was never an audience sitting & watching me in a dedicated fashion & so I got quite used to being in the background. The Voice made me realize there was a lot more to the music industry than I initially thought. I didn’t even know you had to release songs to become someone – like how weird, all I did was covers. Even though I was writing music, I never once thought about releasing it. It was only once I started talking to producers & people who had been in the industry for a minute that I began to discover my trajectory.
In the years since, you’ve released more than 50 songs, your biggest songs being from your debut album Philosophy. How does that album compare to the stuff you’re releasing now 2 years later?
It is a little different. I am definitely keeping everything very lyrical still. I feel like that’s how I carved my niche. For whatever reason I’ve always felt the inclination to attach deeper stories to my music. Whether they be happy, sad, philosophical or whatever, it’s genuinely really important to me. Despite this, the actual ‘genre’, or theme of my music has most definitely evolved & changed. In my most recent unreleased album, I’ve completely veered from alternative pop to electronic pop, & I’d say the major reason for that is I’ve developed an ability to produce & engineer music now. Teaching myself production throughout Covid has been invaluable, as now I’m able to inject more of my personality into the instrumentation, not just the melody & lyrics.
You’re one of Australia’s most streamed artists, have your own record label, and have released a few surprise projects for your fans recently! Why those tracks compared to other you’ve written?
My first two songs of No Longer Hollow – “Don’t Forget Me” & “You Were Right”, weren’t really meant to be launched this 12 months. To be sincere, this complete EP wasn’t ever meant to exist. All of those acoustic songs have been to be put aside for a romantic album after the discharge of my digital document. My imaginative and prescient was to discover this digital panorama, then head again to my roots with a passionate, intimate album which might pay homage to those that’ve supported me since “Chariot”. The final 6 to eight months nonetheless, I’ve been in seemingly endless discussions with distribution corporations who’ve expressed curiosity in signing this new document. I’ve needed to be fairly affected person, & that’s so exhausting for me as I’m accustomed to releasing a brand new music each month. For my part, that’s how I’ve developed such an unlimited, worldwide listener-base, by releasing an incessant quantity of music with 4 to five movies per observe.
Throughout these distribution conversations I needed to halt this launch technique of mine. Emotionally I actually struggled to deal with the dearth of progress & so I made a decision to drop a totally unbiased EP to bridge the hole while we figured every little thing out.
“Demons” and “Oceans” have been tracks you wrote merely very quickly (one taking lower than an hour and one taking a number of days), whereas different tracks like “Black Sheep” took months upon months to finish. Do you’ve gotten any songs in your present stack of “to be released” pile which have taken no time in any respect or taken exceptionally lengthy?
If I start a music acoustically, I’ll almost certainly end it inside a day or two. Although if I begin a music via every other means (Professional Instruments/synth/drum machine), I discover it takes longer to get into the zone. I’d say it is because I’ve written acoustic music nearly all of my life, & due to that, I discover now that I’m in a position to fairly simply faucet into an emotional, subconscious-like state, the place songs simply appear to simply write themselves. I simply lock the door & let all of it come. By means of every other artistic means nonetheless, that emotional power is directed into the event of the sounds & samples & construction, not the storytelling & narrative. I’m as an alternative compelled to inject lyricism excessive of the music, as an alternative of writing it within the second. That artistic transition has confirmed fairly tough for me because the preliminary feelings are sometimes left in yesterday, & I’ve moved on from that sentimental headspace.
In saying that, though this new album has been extra of a artistic problem than my earlier, I really feel the hurdles & obstacles have been positively value it, as there are some absolute bangas on this document.
Touching again on “Black Sheep” you point out that the trade made it appear you’d by no means make it anyplace with out sure folks and that it wasn’t the place you have been imagined to be. Then because the music progresses you categorical you proved them flawed and that you simply WERE in a position to do it by yourself. How completely different do you suppose issues could be now for those who took recommendation from these individuals who stated you’d quantity to nothing now? Do you suppose that you simply’ve develop into a greater artist by doing all of it by yourself?
Those that’ve discredited me, on the finish of the day are nonetheless offering constructive criticism. I’m not jaded to the truth that I’d have much more trade consideration if I used to be higher at my craft. Had the aesthetic/sound the trade is on the lookout for, or just performed the trade recreation extra. My curse (although I personally think about it a blessing) is that I simply couldn’t care much less about present traits, & I very hardly ever observe them. Due to this fact, making me an outlier with a distinct segment fanbase who can’t actually be categorized. I’m an artist who prioritises lyrics & that’s not overly necessary to A&R who’ve a quota & a supervisor to report back to.
I’d think about self-awareness a power of mine, & I’m positively not somebody who basks in my achievements. There are nonetheless so many issues I must work on, & as I become old, the extra I have a tendency to seek out. The criticism or lack of consideration from the trade really helps me dive additional inward & determine what I’m missing creatively or in any other case. It’s the way in which I’m in a position to flip my weaknesses into strengths.
I additionally suppose if I moved ahead with a administration group or label early on I’ll not have correctly uncovered my sound. Having a lot remoted time to ponder with out exterior affect has helped me domesticate precisely who I wish to be as an artist. If I’d have signed to a label off a whim, issues might’ve been given to me a bit simpler, or I might’ve been influenced a bit deeper, & I do know for a truth I wouldn’t have grown as a lot as I’ve. Being concerned in each single facet of this profession has helped me acknowledge what you want to do to be a profitable, self-sustained unbiased artist, & I wouldn’t commerce that training for something.
Going again to final 12 months, it’s been tough on everybody – how have you ever dealt with covid and life being at house, what’s the one factor you discovered from it that you simply suppose you’ll take with you for years and years to return?
I might say to be extra appreciative of journey. Each time I return from a world tour I really feel like an upgraded model of myself. I come house with classes & experiences to combine into common life. Covid, & I imagine this is applicable to everybody, has been a tough actuality to digest. As somebody who adores touring, assembly new folks & embracing new cultures, being locked down has made me really feel suppressed & helpless. It’s been two years since I’ve been on a stage so I’ve needed to find success elsewhere.
After the big improve of curiosity in crypto all through covid, you simply launched a NFT challenge, the Conscience Playing cards on the Ethereum Blockchain, are you able to share extra on that?
NFT’s are by far my most enjoyable endeavor proper now. The entire ecosystem is so conducive to my character & it’s nonetheless so untouched. Probably the most fascinating factor to me is that hardly any musicians or artists are implementing it into their launch methods proper now. For my part, they’re lacking a as soon as in a lifetime alternative & can be considerably dissatisfied after they understand what all of that is in a 12 months or two.
There are lots of causes NFT’s are thrilling to me, although the preliminary draw was that I’ve an intrinsic want to gather culturally important issues… Earlier than NFT’s I collected swords, fedoras & a complete bunch of bizarre shit. Now that the know-how exists to gather gadgets & property digitally – as an alternative of solely displaying my prized possessions in my home, all the world can view them inside a digital gallery on the click on of a button.
Two months in the past I launched a challenge known as the ‘Conscience Cards’. 1,295 animated collector playing cards originating from the designs of my Conscience album. Holders of the NFT’s obtained early entry to new music, free entry to reveals (ceaselessly) & the flexibility to get in on future tasks earlier than the general public. As of scripting this I’ve launched one other two tasks, one is named ‘Jacob Lee’s Music Archive’ & the opposite is ‘Lowly’s Personal Parchments’, which is a slowly creating Metaverse storyline. Inside this two month interval I’ve achieved virtually $100,000 in income via Twitter advertising alone. I might go on in regards to the matter, although possibly I’ll save that for an article devoted to the subject.
You needed to cancel your 2019 US tour pre-covid and your European tour on account of covid; do you’ve gotten any tour plans within the works?
I do! Though I’m considerably hesitant to discuss it as I don’t wish to should cancel one more run & disappoint extra folks. I’m crossing each finger in hope that these new Covid variants don’t cancel these plans too, though clearly security is way extra necessary. If the celebrities align although, & every little thing works out, leaping on stage would be the greatest breath of contemporary air. I’ve been craving it greater than I may even articulate.
What are you most enthusiastic about for the remainder of 2021?
Nicely there isn’t lengthy left! Christmas is simply across the nook. Although truthfully, I’m most excited for a break. I don’t suppose I’ve ever labored as exhausting as I’ve this 12 months, & not one of the tasks are ones which give on the spot gratification. This 12 months has been a lesson in endurance, in addition to a reminder to foster & care to your psychological well being, as a result of it may be fleeting when uncovered to misaligned conditions.
Other than that although, distributing tasks at all times brings me pleasure, & I’ve a lot extra to share throughout the remaining weeks of 2021. These NFT tasks are going to blow folks out of the water. I really feel like I’m on the cusp of one thing by no means achieved earlier than.
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