Q: Jennifer, you’ve wrapped up recording Atrium,….tell us about it…the songs, and the style.
A: Well, this CD has more songs on it than usual…12 to be exact. Overall I would say it has a kind of “Americana” feel to it…though there is a song called Moon Over Tuscany that I wrote in remembrance of Luciano Pavarotti, which has a European feel to it. But I did a cover of the classic Shenandoah, with original arrangements, and there’s an original song called America,…so, overall it has that “Americana” feel I would say. I really enjoyed making it.
Q: You release and post your songs as they are being recorded. Why do you not wait until the album is complete?
A: Ha! It takes around a month to write, arrange, record, and master each song…why keep myself and my audience waiting until the whole shebang is complete? Who has the time to wait anymore?
Q: I hear you. Tell us a little about your original songs, and the traditional standards you recorded.
A: You mean, what are the original songs about? A whole spectrum of things. I don’t write anything unless I feel I have something to say. Just to write a song to say I’ve written one is silly to me. Each one has to mean something, to me. As far as the cover songs like Loch Lomond, it’s a real honor and privilege to be able to take a beloved song from the past and put a fresh spin on it, and let it back out into the world to be rediscovered.
Q: So many of your songs are very popular, like Island Waters, and One Good Deed, and Milk and Honey,…why do you think they have so much longevity?
A: Well, Island Waters, for instance, takes a person to the ocean and to a Heavenly place…at least, that’s what I was trying to accomplish! I guess it worked! With all the natural disasters that befall this planet, I think that’s why One Good Deed stands out to the fans. Milk and Honey is my experience with being born again. I think many people can relate to that.
Q: Peace In the Valley, Crossroads, Paradox, Atrium,…what does each album mean to you?
A: Different times in my life. Each album represents different phases of my experience…like a little time capsule!
Q: Indeed. Do you enjoy doing videos?
A: Initially I was hesitant because it’s one thing to be behind the scenes, in a sense, and another to be in front…you know what I mean? But the experience has been great…I’m looking forward to the next video actually. They are a challenge, and another form of expression for the music. By challenge I mean that they involve a different set of creative endeavor than just sitting down and writing a song….but that’s fine.
Q: I understand a movie is in the works for next year with you in the main role.
A: Where did you hear that? That’s supposed to be Top Secret!
Â Q: Oh, sorry! I guess someone on your team spoke too soon.
A: That’s okay…happens all the time.
Q: Okay…your essays mean a lot to people. Where do you get the inspiration?
A: Have you ever watched a rock sitting in the middle of a stream, and watched the water flowing over and around it? The rock stays in one place, but the water constantly is swirling over and around it. That’s how inspiration feels to me. I can sit still, and suddenly I feel this flow of information…I guess I could call it information, like water, and it has to be translated into either words, or sound. Does that make sense?
Q: Well, yes, although I am more of a nuts and bolts type of person. But I love your analogy! Music, essays, books, videos, movies…what’s next for Jennifer Avalon?
A: A vacation! (laughter) No, I’m just kidding. Why, is there anything else I should be doing?
Q: I can’t think of it!
A: Well, that’s good! (laughter)
Q: What will the next CD, Clarion, sound like?
A: The first song has already been recorded and is at the site. It’s called Marci, and I am really pleased how it turned out. The second song has already been recorded, an instrumental, and I am working on the third, at the moment. I just write from the heart…I don’t really know the overall shape of the CD until it’s complete. Then I usually notice a particular flavor.
Q: Wonderful. Thanks so much Jennifer for taking the time to answer my questions.
A: You’re welcome. Hope to do this again soon.
Q: For sure.