There is something nostalgic about Jackie Venson’s artistry; there is a subtle transparency to the truth she reveals in her music — and on a deeper level, every note sung, as well. I speak with the most parental discretion (even though i’m not a parent) when I say this, but there is a nudity to her vocal range: stripped down, and natural. When music belonged naturally to the passionate, evocative artist, and the fan could feel the emotion resonating from within their bowels. That is the mastery Austin based singer/songwriter Jackie Venson brings to her performances. The art of conversation, through music, lives on.
“And then there were, those nights you know. When I think I, really need you so. Your warm embrace, I long to have. Oh but the love you gave don’t match the love I give.”
These are the words from Venson’s leading track “The Love I Give,” off her debut full-length album, The Light in Me set to release June 29th.
The upcoming album draws influences from Alicia Keys’ soulful feminism, Buddy Guy’s guitar improvisation, and Sade’s airy vocals. Of course, this style was noticeable in Venson’s previous work The Unreleased EP, and the Rollin’ On EP. It’s like a cauldron mixed with the spices of classic variety. The result: a “genre-bending mix of blues, rock, soul, and R&B” with the right consistency. Venson’s new product (without spoiling much) is a conversation about unrequited love, and individual escapism. Most songs are put together with hints of ska laden in the instrumentals. And I would be lying if i didn’t say that I can hear elements of gospel in songs like “All Rise,” and “Always Free.”
As a young prodigy of music since the age of eight, Venson has studied piano for 15 years as well as singing, songwriting, and two years of intensive guitar study; in addition, she received her major in composition and studio production at Berklee College of Music. Eddy Hobizal, who, along with fellow lifelong musicians, Gilbert Ayala (drums) and Alan Uribe (bass) helped craft the modern blues adherent in Venson’s album.
Venson is no dilettante, wannabe performer, however a real staple of what a musician can achieve when they put in their 10, 000 hours for both musical schooling, and late night pub sessions for practical honing.
Stirring the cogs of current music with storytelling, Venson’s experience might soon extend beyond the local Austin scene, adding new venues to her young, but already impressive CV. There is a subculture of jazz fanatics that can’t wait to hear the voice behind the chord.
Check out “The Love I Give” on SoundCloud (click here).
And her recent music video for “Jupiter.”