Getting To Know... Jessenia Mills

After turning out a breadth of riveting releases since her much-loved 2021 debut LP 'Love & Madness', North Carolina-based artist Jessenia Mills is back on the grind once again with her woozy new single 'Asylum'.

Honing more of that rich and illuminating R&B aesthetic she is known for, 'Asylum' makes for a wonderfully warm and inviting listen. With her heartfelt vocal performance layered across a shimmering production from start to finish, she returns to the fold with one of her most emotive efforts to date here.

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 over the years.


What was the first instrument you fell in love with?

I was absolutely terrible at playing instruments other than the recorder. I began to see my vocals as an instrument to be able to communicate to others through music. Our voice is unique and we only have one.

What kind of music did you love when you were younger?

I loved and still love all kinds of music. I grew up listening to Selena, Tupac, Wu-Tang Clan, Sinead O’Connor, Evanescence, Alicia Keys and many more. Latin to Country, I always enjoyed the way artists can take you into their different worlds.

What was the first album you remember owning?

I am a 90s baby and grew up with both cassette tapes and CDs. I first owned a ‘Barbie Hit Mix’ CD with cover songs reminiscent of Britney Spears, Shania Twain, and OutKast.

What is the one song you wished you could have written yourself?

I wish I had written ‘Speak Life’ by Damian Marley. The song beautifully captures everyday life, placing value into the little things we do each day. “Life is sacred,” as spoken by Damian.

Do you have any habits or rituals you go through when trying to write new music?

I get a tingly rush when I need to put a song on paper. New music tends to come to my mind while I am driving, eating dinner or playing a video game. In other words, I am writing music all of the time.

Who are your favourite artists you have found yourself listening to at the moment?

Paramore and Brandy. Brandy’s ‘Full Moon’ album takes me back to 2002, when I’d be immersed in her smooth vibe and rich vocals. Paramore’s ‘Running Out of Time’ is a great depiction of headspace and finding time to do mundane tasks. It reminds me I am not alone in wanting to slow down and smell the roses.

If you could open a show for anyone in the world, who would it be?

I would love to open for Willow Smith. Willow is an incredible artist that is unafraid to step outside of the creative box while still being authentic. Her audience is a vast and diverse world that I would be honoured to be a part of.

What do you find is the most rewarding part about being a musician?

Music is universal. To be able to create it is a pleasure I don’t think I’ll ever be able to put into words.

And what is the most frustrating part?

Accepting that not everyone is going to get the message.

And what is the best piece of advice you have received as a musician?

“Just be yourself” is the best advice I received from my family.


Jessenia Mills' new single 'Asylum' is available to stream now. Check it out in the player below.