After cementing herself with a wealth of mesmerising efforts these last few years, Adelaide-based artist Jen Lush returns once again to offer up her sublime new single 'Lovers Parting, Dawn'.
Based on the poem by Australian poet Kevin Brophy, 'Lovers Parting, Dawn' makes for an incredibly rich and immersive listen. With her soaring vocal performance layered across a sprawling production from start to finish, she is continuing her rise as one of the more captivating names doing the rounds right now.
So with the new single available to stream now, we sat down with her to find out more about her origins and what has been inspiring her most lately.
What was the first instrument you fell in love with?
The guitar – I wish I could say something less predictable, but after years of playing the piano and only being able to play pieces by rote, I picked up my Dad’s twelve string guitar and found it singing back to me. I started writing songs when he gave it to me some years later.
What kind of music did you love when you were younger?
I was raised to the sounds of the folk music my parents played – from traditional Celtic, to folk music from Canada, America, as well as the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Gordon Lightfoot and Peter, Paul and Mary, Ralph McTell and the Mamas & The Papas, which I mostly loved and trained my ear for my love affair with harmonies. But I mostly loved pop, anything with hooks, lines and sinkers. I’d choreograph dances to my favourite bangers with Madonna and glam rock being a consistent feature. I remember almost weeping as a kid when a song would come on the radio that I loved - so easily moved!
What was the first album you remember owning?
Being a pop maniac my first proper album was Madonna’s The Immaculate Collection. I made my Dad listen to it from start to finish on the way to my ballet classes, poor thing. He was respectful but not a convert.
What is the one song you wished you could have written yourself?
Far out, that’s almost in the too hard basket. Ok, I’ll help myself narrow it down by making it be in the last twenty years – is that cheating? Helplessness Blues by The Fleet Foxes. I also wish I had written I Wish I Was The Moon by Neko Case, Shooting Shadows by The Milk Carton Kids , Landslide by Fleetwood Mac, and.. gah make me stop..
Do you have any habits or rituals you go through when trying to write new music?
I try and start up the ‘morning write’ – something that comes and goes throughout the year but just making myself get up and write – anything at all, sometimes surprisingly yields something in amongst the nonsense that might have a streak of gold running through it. Otherwise no interesting habits, just trying to snatch and grab some moments of quiet amongst the daily things that pull me away from making.
Who are your favourite artists you have found yourself listening to at the moment?
Jesca Hoop, Feist, Laura Marling, Modest Mouse, Other Lives, Hiss Golden Messenger, Sufjan Stevens, Anais Mitchell, Tiny Ruins, and a bunch of local artists and friends who make the Adelaide / Australian music scene so rich and are too numerous to single out.
If you could open a show for anyone in the world, who would it be?
The Fleet Foxes. I love their music – their songwriting and instrumentation is impeccable. Also I saw them play in Sydney on their ‘Crack Up’ tour and was in a stupid swoon for ages.
What do you find is the most rewarding part about being a musician?
The most rewarding part about being a musician is the possibility of connecting with others through music - whether it be playing alongside other artists and hearing their stories or playing one of those shows where the audience and musicians are all held together by a shared experience, I think of it as gold threads that connect us together in those moments. I live for those moments where it is as much an exchange as it is a performance. And also that magical moment when a tiny guitar noodle or hum of lyric starts to bloom into a song, and you sit and tend to it and craft it into something that might reach the ears of others someday.
And what is the most frustrating part?
The most frustrating thing for me is probably the marketing side of things - sending the word out to folks is not something I am not naturally good at, but it's an important part of the sharing part! That and the admin side of things. It makes writing the actual songs feel like a breeze..!
And what is the best piece of advice you have received as a musician?
Pay attention to the details of things around you and nurture your inner world.
Jen Lush's new single 'Lovers Parting, Dawn' is available to stream now. Check out the new video for it in the player below.