Jade Bird and I are wearing the same pair of Ray-Ban sunglasses. She looks like a modern-day Janice Joplin as she tangles her legs together in the chair across from me, and I’m discreetly wiping sweat off my upper lip. She’s got an infectious giggle that is amplified when she tells me how she recently made a visit to the Silent Disco at a music festival prior to her performance. “I was so nervous! So, I went to the Silent Disco for a laugh. It was brilliant,” she says. We candidly chat about how the Silent Disco is a great way to get out of your head and abandon any insecurities you might have. It’s somewhat surprising though to hear about her nerves as the breakout singer-songwriter has found huge success with her newest songs, “Lottery” and “Furious,” following the 2017 release of her debut EP, Something American.
With “Furious,” Bird tapped into a raw and vulnerable headspace, opening herself up to listeners in an acoustic setting and revealing a sharp-tongued love story. On “Lottery,” the songstress wrestled with another ended relationship with a roar behind the heart-breaking lyrics. With a busy summer of festival gigs, Bird says she’s already working on new music and plans on going in a different direction. “My friend says one of the songs is the ‘anti-“Lottery.'” It’s a little feistier,” she says.
Savoring the early stages of a relationship, Bird says she’s quite happy compared to how she felt when writing music in the past. “My debut EP was about all the relationships, all the guys, all the crappy people; it all came out,” she says. “The biggest challenge for me now will be figuring out how to write when I’m happy. Because I’m quite content.”
Though her past music has focused on reactions to relationships or romance, Bird prides herself on being a strong female artist and inspiring young women. This feminist attitude has always come out naturally through her quick-witted lyrics and powerful stage presence. Being raised by her mom and grandma, Bird says she was surrounded by strong, single women who taught her how to maintain strength. “I was always taught by my mum to put girls in a position where they feel powerful and that they don’t have to say ‘yes’ to a guy or feel intimidated by anything,” she tells me. This mindset shines through in her music, even if the underlying storyline might seem typically sad, Bird executes the performance with a certain cheekiness.
With her first U.S. headlining tour scheduled for this fall, Bird has plans to release new music in the coming months. For new listeners, she says you can expect “pop sensibilities and Americana songwriting style with a feisty performance attitude.” She adds with a giggle, “It’s very me.”
Catch Jade Bird performing at Latitude Festival and Bumbershoot before her U.S. tour begins in August.
Main image credit: Francesca Allen