Dance diva Jess Glynne has fast become one of England’s favourite vocalists.
She bagged a number one with her Clean Bandit single ‘Rather Be’, another number one with Route 94 on their track ‘My Love’, a third with her Tinie Tempah collaboration ‘Not Letting Go’ and fourth and fifth number ones with her solo singles ‘Hold My Hand’ and (her current Aussie single) ‘Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself’.
There’s been another number one with her just-released debut album ‘I Cry When I Laugh’ and a sensational win with Clean Bandit at the Grammys.
She’s so hot right now, so we popped over a series of questions to Ms Glynne and here are her responses.
Q. Congratulations, firstly on your phenomenal success over in the UK. How many ‘pinch yourself’ moments are you up to now?
A. Well there’s been a few. ‘Rather Be’ at number one and then the Grammy win. When ‘Hold My Hand’ went to No.1 that was special, as it was the first for me in my own right, followed by ‘Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself’. And then the album… amazing. It still feels a dream at times.
Q. Where were you when you heard the news that the album had come in at No.1?
A. That was a mad week. I’d been in Holland and Germany and back to the UK. It was all bit of a whirlwind. We had the album launch party in London which was a great night, celebrating with my friends and family.
Q. Why do you think it is the British record buying public have taken to you in the way they have?
A. I honestly don’t know. I write songs based on my experiences and taking hope and positivity out of a host of circumstances. I guess the songs must mean something to the listeners too, they are touched by them, they relate them to their lives as well.
Q. You’ve mentioned consistently throughout your career than you don’t want to be famous? Do you get the feeling that, with so much success already, that desire is now largely out of your hands?
A. I haven’t thought about it. I’m just enjoying having my debut album released throughout the world and taking the live show to wherever I can.
Q. You must dread popping out to the supermarket?
A. I’ll let you know. Hardly had time to go shopping! It’s been tour bus, hotel, gig, plane, airport… all over Europe and now I’m on tour in the US. When I get home its just about enough time to do the washing and then pack the bags again.
Q. What was it that originally drew you to the dance field?
A. I love all kinds of music. Listen to the album and you’ll hear what I mean and what I like, what’s influenced me, whether it’s dance, pop, soul or R&B.
Q. Tell us about this debut album of yours… How long you worked on it for, your collaborators, how many songs you had to pick from and how you decided upon the baker’s dozen that ended up on the final product.
A. Making the final choice was tough. One of the first bits of advice I had on coming into the music business, was to write 100 songs and keep working at it. We probably had final recordings of maybe 20 songs that I loved and then had to cut that down to the final 12. It probably took almost two years from the day I signed the record deal to when the album was released. I worked with some great people but I feel the key people for me have been Janee “Jin Jin” Bennett who is my co-writer, Knox Brown the producer who really worked on the songs that became the spine of the album and then Starsmith for his studio magic.
Q. Can you explain how you came to settle on the title ‘I Cry When I Laugh’?
A. Sure. Well it’s a fact as people who know me will tell you. I do cry when I laugh, my dad does it too, and I always had the idea that it would be a perfect album title when the time came.
Q. Which of the tracks on it holds the most meaning to you?
A. Hard to pick a real favorite as I love them all, but if you make me choose I’d probably say ‘Ain’t Got Far To Go’ which I did with Knox Brown. I feel it’s one of those songs that helped form the spine of the album.
Q. How do you see the Jess Glynne story evolving beyond ‘I Cry When I Laugh’?
A. I just want to continue making music, whether its writing songs, recording or playing live.
Q. You’ve certainly seemingly been quite busy on the live circuit of late?
A. I’ve been touring in the UK for over a year and love playing live. What I want now is to play live with my band to whoever wants me. Right now I’m in the US but I have plans to keep on playing through to next year.
Q. And we know it’s going swimmingly well for you over there in the UK at the moment, but when are you going to get your butt down under, please?
A. I’m going to be there just as soon as I finish my first US tour, so my butt will be down under very soon!
Jess Glynne’s new single ‘Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself’ and her new album ‘I Cry When I Laugh’ are available now.