FEATURED ARTIST – Bianca Jazmine
Interview With Bianca Jazmine
By: Dennis M. Kelly
Dennis: Good day Bianca, thank you very much for taking the time to answer some questions for me today… How have things been going for you lately?
Bianca: Thank you for having me! Things have been really great lately. This year has provided a lot of growth for me so far, and I’m so grateful for my journey and what’s to come!
Dennis: Excellent, so glad to hear it! So, tell me where your music career began for you.
Bianca: As a child, I was always writing poems in my High School Musical notebook (forgive me, Zac Efron) and obnoxiously singing every pop song on the radio (my parents never knew a quiet house as long as I was around). Along the way, I learned to play the harp, guitar, piano, flute, ukulele, and eventually took vocal lessons as a teenager.
It wasn’t until I focused on my vocals that I felt like this was a path I could seriously pursue. Finding and refining my voice really helped me believe in my abilities as a singer-songwriter, and eventually I began to record both covers and original songs and perform them live. Songwriting & performing gave me an outlet to express everything I felt and learned in my inner world; and allowed me to share those discoveries with listeners with hopes of them gaining a new perspective or simply feeling seen.
Dennis: How was your childhood and how did it shape you as an artist?
Bianca: My childhood was a creative adventure. My two sisters and I are all highly creative, and our parents really allowed us to explore different artistic avenues, whether it was letting us take music lessons or paint murals on our bedroom walls. As I grew into adolescence and began to take a larger interest in becoming a singer, my parents were my #1 supporters from the start and I wouldn’t be where I am without their encouragement and support! They believed in me before I even believed in myself.
I suffered from pretty bad perfectionism and anxiety, which led to a lot of self-doubt when looking at an industry as difficult as this one. Over the years, as I’ve grown into adulthood, I’ve been able to let go of a lot of that doubt, and embrace the power of believing in myself; and ever since I’ve put more faith in trusting the process, things have really started to work out in my favor! (It’s much easier said than done, though.)
Dennis: I can relate to those struggles, but it sounds like you’re on the right path for sure. Do you have anyone else in your family that is musically inclined?
Bianca: Ironically, neither of my parents practiced any musical skills, but my sisters and I are all musically inclined! Maybe it’s one of those genes that can skip a generation, although I do think both my parents can hold a note!
Dennis: (laughs) Hey, you never know, they can be late (musical) bloomers and surprise you. How do you approach your songwriting?
Bianca: My songwriting process changes a bit song-to-song, but I do have a collection of lyrical bits I call “seeds.” It’s basically a never-ending journal entry of small phrases that pop into my head as I go about life. I call them “seeds” because most of the time, these small phrases end up getting “planted” and “grow” into entire songs! After creating a chord progression, I’ll choose a seed that matches what I’m going for, and continue to lyrically branch off until I’ve got all my verses and chorus. It’s really helpful to have original writing prompts lined up and ready to go when I’m feeling inspired!
Dennis: Your process sounds much more structured than what I am used to hearing artists say to this question, but that is in no way a bad thing. What song would be the one you’re most proud of and why?
Bianca: I would say one of my recent singles “Let in to Let Go” would be the song I’m most proud of. That project was a completely DIY effort, from the recording process at home, to shooting the music video with an iPhone. It was creatively a project that was designed entirely from the heart, both musically and visually, and one that I poured hours of time into crafting.
Dennis: Nice! A lot of your songs have positive messages, have any of them stemmed from personal experiences?
Bianca: Absolutely! Everything I write about usually comes from a big-picture perspective: taking a step out further in order to understand a step deeper into ourselves. Taking this approach really allows you to be more objective about your own actions and help you hold yourself accountable, as well as recognize patterns in other people & situations around you. From this “zoomed-out” perspective, you can really start to understand the lessons hidden beneath all of life’s twists and turns. These lessons almost always appear in songs for me!
Dennis: How much impact have you observed so far your songs?
Bianca: One of the most gratifying moments of being an artist is when someone tells you your art has moved them, or made them feel understood. I observe the impact the most at my live shows, where I’ve had the honor of listeners approaching & connecting with me after my set. My overall goal with being a singer-songwriter is to heal others through music, so seeing that impact happen from my songs is exactly what keeps me going.
Dennis: I bet, and yes, what a special and meaningful way to affect positive change in others! Being a multi-instrumentalist musician, what instrument do you tend to use to write most of your music?
Bianca: I tend to write predominantly with the piano, but I also have written quite a few with the ukulele.
Dennis: What is your favorite instrument to convey the emotion of the song best?
Bianca: Piano is definitely a highly-emotional instrument and is my first go-to; but I do think a strong bass line can carry the vibe of a song up to a whole new level.
Dennis: In addition to voice lessons, have you had any guitar or piano lessons?
Bianca: Yes! I had lessons for all of the above growing up, but the ukulele I taught myself as a teenager.
Dennis: Would you recommend lessons for all musicians?
Bianca: I have actually spent quite a few years as a private music instructor as well as an artist, and I do feel like it’s helped me maintain practice and stay on top of my own musical skills in order to educate others. Having a lesson schedule does hold someone more accountable for practicing and growing as an artist, so I would definitely recommend it for those who like or need structure (feel free to reach out for lessons!).
Dennis: Tell me about the business side of Bianca Jazmine, are you self-managed?
Bianca: Yes, as of right now, I am completely independent! It can definitely get overwhelming wearing all hats. Slowly but surely, I’m building a team that’s right for me!
Dennis: How much would you say living in Los Angeles has helped you and your career?
Bianca: I’m still relatively new to the area, I just moved at the end of last year. But I do feel like in the short time, I have seen an accelerated amount of growth in my career compared to being in South Florida. Things are really starting to line up and I’m very excited for the future!
Dennis: Tell me about your music videos, the latest being for “Pain’s Got A Rhythm” by Parklet Films… how much direction/input did you have with it?
Bianca: When it comes to music videos, I’m usually behind the steering wheel in terms of creative direction. “Pain’s Got a Rhythm” was a collaborative one with all the post-production editing being done by Parklet Films; but the music video for “Let in to Let Go” was DIY from the ground up. I shot everything on my iPhone 11 with a Moment Lens attached, and edited & stitched it all together with Adobe Premiere Pro.
Dennis: Is it fun to explore your music in this way?
Bianca: Absolutely! Aside from music, my next highest artistic passion is photography. This, combined with loving art overall, brings one of my favorite non-musical aspects of being an artist: the visuals! The colors, design, and visual story of all releases are always so much fun for me. It’s another outlet that I feel I can creatively express myself and the message of the song.
Dennis: How about shows, what do you have coming up in the way of live shows?
Bianca: I have two great shows coming up! First one is for Breaking Sound at Adults Only Bar (Hollywood) on 4/26, and the next is at The Viper Room (West Hollywood) on 5/6. You can grab tickets under the “Shows” tab on my website! [http://www.biancajazmine.com/shows/]
Dennis: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers today?
Bianca: I’m really excited for my upcoming album release! Stay tuned for singles that will be rolling out over the next few months (the best place to keep updated is my Instagram, @biancajazminemusic).
Dennis: Thank you very much once again for taking the time to answer my questions. I wish you all the best in your wonderful career!
Bianca: Thank you again for having me!
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