Interview: Jake Newton Talks Soldier of the Heart
by Daniel Haim
As impressive as the first EP (I’m a Bird) was Jake Newton assures the deliverance of the second masterpiece that will surely tune your heart to the structure of which combines the following feelings all together: love, delicate, delight, and leaves you with a taste to needing more.
There is a major difference between the two (I’m a Bird and Soldier of the Heart) you can feel the evolution and progression but worry not because you will hear Jake’s unexampled and luminous voice and if you were in the search for that Piano touch Burn In My Cage will do just that. One of my favorites is The Ballad of Johnny Troy the song is armed with an accordion and a delightful soft female voice which examples the power of collaborations. This is Jake’s second time around Bloginity.com so guys – you’ve got to make sure to read our first interview where we spoke about Jake’s life. We encourage everyone to check out Jakes homepage www.jakenewton.com
Daniel: How has 2009 treated you? What have you been up to in the last year? How were the holidays?
Jake: The Holidays were wonderful, I was able to spend a lot of time with family and friends even though it seems more and more it gets harder to get everyone together.
2009 came and went so fast, but it saw my second album, along with a lot of great new collaborations. I’ve been playing out more and more, I changed what I was doing with live shows, I’ve been experimenting with how to translate what I do as a recording artist with what I do in concert.
I know that it’s hard for people to get out to shows, our culture is getting more and more sedentary and in light of the past year’s economy people aren’t really leaping to leave the house, so when they come out to see a show you’d better be giving them their money’s worth.
Daniel: You’ve been working on a lot of new projects. How has your music career progressed between the last time we spoke? How musically have you grown between I’m a Bird to Soldier of the Heart
Jake: The processes in which I made my first and second records are such polar opposites. The first record started as a lark, then slowly grew through countless hours in front of my computer and in my friend and producer Brian Irwin’s bedroom studio. I did a lot of the instrumentation myself, not because I’m a control freak, but because I was up in the woods alone for most of it.
For “Soldier of the Heart” Justin Glasco (who produced the record) and I brought in a lot of really talented people to play. It was a far more collaborative process. At the end of everything, I had this enormous sounding record with my name on it, I can’t thank everyone who worked on it enough.
Daniel: There is always a depth into each song you write. I’m a lyrics person as well, so your music talks to me a lot. Could you tell me the story behind your song Terrible Dream? Has it been written for someone? I want to hear about it!
Jake: Terrible Dream was written after I had a nightmare that someone I love had died. Most of the time my dreams have so little structure that it’s hard to put them to words. For some reason though, this one was so real, so visceral, that I had to call the person who died in the dream just to make sure they were ok. In a weird way I think I like those dreams, they force your hand when It comes to relationships and feelings.
Daniel: Nowadays there are many changes in the music industry. As an artist, what unexpected hurdles have you come across?
Jake: “Even though the music industry has gone through such an upheaval in the last 10 years, that we have so much more control as a do it yourself artist, I still run into the odd dinosaur who has the old paradigm as a measure of success.
What I love about music these days is that there are countless people who can now afford to tour the country, play concerts, and record new albums without even 10 people out of 100 hearing about them. The Musical middle-class is on the rise, and as a result we’re hearing stuff that challenges people to do more than get on the dance floor.”
Daniel: You’ve released a song for the holidays feat. Lelia Broussard, What could you tell me about working with her, how did you get to make music together?
Jake: I love Lelia, she was so fun to work with. We had been kicking the idea around that we should write together for a few months, finally about near August I called her and said we needed a Christmas song, She came over the next week and we wrote it in my studio. She has such a great ear for melody. When we were recording there were so many “Aha” moments that I never would have found if I had tried them myself, she’s got a voice of an angel, well, a sultry angel.
Daniel: What inspires you to write, who are your greatest influences?
Jake: Really great work inspires me. Whether it be a song or a movie or piece of literature. I’ve always admired people who can take a radically different view of something and still end up with a sense of timeless truth that feels fresh and new at the same time.
Daniel: Soldier of the Heart, was the album written for someone?
Jake: I think I wrote the record to comfort people who may feel desperate and alone, I do know that it isn’t what one would call a happy record, but I hope that it offers some sort of hope that someone else is out there feeling the same feelings.
Daniel: What are the hopes for 2010? What’s the new years resolutions?
Jake: Well, My New Year’s resolution is to get healthy, pure and simple. My hope and plan is to tour more. To collaborate with more artists that I admire, and to make a full length record by the end of the year.