Archive for JENN CLEARY



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2010 Telluride Blues Festival Solo Acoustic Blues Competition Finalist

Afresh: What is your name, and name your group/band/act?

Jenn Cleary

Afresh: Where are the artists from?  What is their talent in the group?

Boulder, CO

Afresh: How did the band get the name?

Blame my mother

Afresh: What instrument do you play now? (If applicable)

Acoustic and electric guitar

Afresh: What (who) does your act/art consist of?

I perform as a solo acoustic, singer-songwriter or in a duo with a rockin’ harmonica player or sometimes with a full rock band

Afresh: How would you describe your music/art/entertainment for the public audience if they have never seen you before?

Jenn Cleary is back to the Wheel now with her second CD release after Breakin’ Loose with number one.  She is a singer-songwriter, writing deep from her heart about particular happenings in her own personal life and about fascinating lives that she has come upon in her travels throughout the world.  Her music has been played throughout the USA and Europe, as well as on many radio stations internationally. She is a 2010 finalist for the Telluride Blues Festival Solo Acoustic Competition, as well as a repeat performer for the Sundance Film Festival, and producer and host of the TV show Behind the Song.  Her style is a mixture of acoustic rock and blues with a little touch of folk.  Jenn resides in Boulder, CO.

Afresh:  If you had to describe your music in three or four words, what would you call it? Acoustic rock and blues

Afresh: Give me some details about the group/act/art?

I am a singer-songwriter

Afresh: What are your songs about? (What specific themes do they cover?)

Joy, pain, grief, happiness, freedom, love

Afresh: How long have you been performing live or making art?

4 years

Afresh:  If you had to categorize your music, what genre would it best fit?  (Name up to three) acoustic rock, blues, folk

Afresh:  What do you feel distinguishes “an artist” from just a musician?

I am a creative and thoughtful writer, singing and performing, not just playing an instrument

Afresh: What are your immediate music career goals? (Next 1 to 3 years.)

Get my tunes out to as many people as possible

Afresh: What has been the biggest challenge for you or the group?

Raising a family at the same time

Afresh: You’ve heard of the term “starving artists” before, how do you cope with major obstacles?  Keep my day job

Afresh:  Do you feel the economic crunch has hurt the industry, or do you have some other promotional tips to help support your music?

Yes, it is very hard to make any money at it

Afresh:  Who is your fan/customer?  Do you have a fan club or street team?

It started with family and friends and has built thru performing live and getting my tunes out there.  I am starting to build a street team.

Afresh: Art & Music has an impact on both young and old.  Everyone loves a celebrity, so what advice do you have for the youth of today?

Focus on what makes you happy.  Don’t’ rely on positive feedback to rule your life in music.

Afresh: What does your family think of your performance and do they support you?

Yes they support me, but it is hard on them at times.

Afresh: What is your stance on how to get the public to support “live music” and see the shows?  Any ideas???

Have earlier shows and listening rooms for the singer-songwriter to reach the over 30 audience who is often not interested in the late night, loud, club scene.

Afresh: Thinking back, did your family carry on the same musical/artistic interests?

Yes, my grandmother played piano and was known as the life of the party and put on shows.

Afresh: Do you have your own favorite type of music and is it any different from what you play now?

I have grown out of what I have listened to which is a diverse selections of music.

Afresh: Do you have other interests or talents you would like to share with us?

Being a mother, beekeeping, gardening, charity work, homebuilding

Afresh: What has been your strong influence to continue performing?

To connect with other people.

Afresh: How do you rate your live performance ability?  Do you feel better performing live or in the studio?

I have become a strong live performer and love the interaction with a listening audience.

Afresh: Does anyone in particular influence your artistic/musical talent?

Who ever I talk to so look out!

Afresh: Who does most of the song writing/art/literature? (Discuss the songwriting process in detail.)

I always keep a notebook nearby to write down ideas from what I observe, read about or from conversations.  Then I come back to my notebook at a later time with my guitar and see what comes out.

Afresh:  What image do you think your music conveys and why did you choose this type of image for your music?

I cover so many topics; I am not sure what image is portrayed.  Perhaps because I am in the middle age part of my life and have accumulated some wisdom along the way and people see me as an artist who has something to say.  I don’t tend to sing about lost love and youthful confusion but tend to question why the world is the way it is, I’m often hopeful and humorous at times

Afresh:  Someone once said write what you would want to perform over and over.  With that in mind, what song do you love to perform the most?

“I Need to Go” because it rocks!

Afresh: If you had to change one thing about your music/group what do you feel would be the best change to benefit the group overall and why?

Only pick the shows that will be really enjoyable.  (Some are a drag- long, late nights, nobody listening, smoky rooms)  So, I guess this would be the listening room environments where most people come to hear you not just be there for back ground music.

Afresh:  Where would you like to see yourself within the next five years as an artist?  What are your long-term career goals?

To have songs that have been picked up commercially and to have mailbox money coming in.  And to do just occasional shows where people are there because they want to hear the songs I wrote.

Afresh: Have you ever had any strange or stalker type fans that you are aware of?  How does it affect the closeness you have with your fans, media, etc. now?

I do have to be cautious.

Afresh: While getting ready to perform have you ever been interrupted by fans who snuck in to the dressing room/rehearsal?  How did you handle this?


Afresh: Tell us about your most embarrassing moment if you care to share it with us?

Almost fell off the stage.  I threw my head back and was really whaling on a song and lost my balance.  The back up singer next to me caught me before I fell forward.

Afresh: What has been the most bizarre thing (thrown) on the stage with you?  How did you react?


Afresh: What is your wildest story with the group?

For me it was having a friend call to tell me that manager, Clint Hurdle of the Colorado Rockies baseball team was on the big radio station in Denver/Boulder and had just listed me as one of the best up and coming performers in Colorado.  I called to thank him and he invited me in to a couple of games and to batting practice to meet the players.  My whole band played one time at Coors Field and Clint said that he played my CD in the Rockies clubhouse.  Very fun time.

Afresh: What has been the worst nightmare for the group?  How did you get through it all?

One of our first shows as a full rock band there was a lot of pressure from the venue owner to fill the place which I worked really hard to promote and felt I was on line to succeed and then there was a huge snow storm.  Many of my good friends came despite the weather, but the owner still gave me a hard time about not filling the place.  The band all showed up late because of the storm, and one of the players mother in law died that night.  When I called to thank the owner the next day she said that her sound man said we sucked.  Needless to say, we never played there again.

Afresh: What are your up-to-date performance plans?  New releases?  Tours? News?

Just released Back to the Wheel and am currently playing in Colorado and Florida and have plans to go to Utah and Europe

Afresh: If you could perform with anyone in the world, either dead, alive, or broke-up who would it be? Why? (Name up to three)

Janis Joplin, Little Feat – two of my favorites that I loved to sing along to and heavily influenced my own music

Afresh: What is the furthest show from your home that you have done?


Afresh:  How do you feel about file swapping? Fine to an extent

Afresh: Have you been involved in any benefit performances?  What was it and how did you become involved?

I am always open to benefits when I feel aligned with the cause and have done lots of these shows

Afresh:  How do you think you would like to be remembered by everyone if something were to happen to you suddenly?

As a singer-songwriter who wrote from the heart, mind and soul as a voice of the culture.

Afresh:  If you had only five minutes on earth to perform one song that could leave a great impact on the world today, what song would you perform and why did you choose this particular piece?

Peace in Our World-It gives people pause to think about all of the conflict in the world and perhaps how each of us might make a difference.

Afresh:  As an artist, is there anything special you hope to be able to accomplish?

Changing people lives thru reflective songwriting

Afresh:  Thinking back to the very beginning of the band, how do your feel about your performance today and it is much different for you now than when you first started performing.

There is less internal fear and more confidence in what I sing and communicate.

Afresh:  When things seem to go negatively at times, how do you turn things into something positive?

The negative experiences allow for painful, but interesting times of growth and understanding about what I am doing.  It is a time for deepening what I am about.

Afresh:  What do you attribute to your “drive as an artist”?

The drive is the need to communicate things that are important to me and also just the joy of being able to sing and create music.

Afresh:  As an artist, how would you define SUCCESS?

I already feel that I have succeeded more than I had ever anticipated.  And that is that I am expressing myself in a very dynamic way and not being limited by my fear.

Afresh:  If you had to think of a slogan that could leave a positive impact for everyone what would your slogan be?

Don’t be afraid to do what you love.

Afresh: Do you currently have an agent, endorsement, record label, sponsor, etc.?

I have a radio promoter and a publicist.

Afresh: Have you recorded any previous CD’s or posted any audio files on the Internet? (What type of recording process did you use? Who produced your recording?) If you have a current CD released, how long did the process take for you to do from start to finish?

I produced “Breakin’ Loose” in 2006 and those tunes are all online.  Both CDs took about 4 months each to produce.

Afresh: Is this your first on-line interview or do you have some other articles/stories about you posted somewhere for public viewing?  Have you had any previous print or broadcast media exposure or reviews?

Some are on my website under “reviews” but have never had such extensive questioning!

Afresh:  Do you have a demo or press kit, (including an Electronic Press Kit …an EPK), or any other promotional materials that you could send to us for a future review also?

My website has everything you need to know and more.  Be sure to follow the various links and not just the main pages

Afresh: Do you have any video links where people can see you?

Yes on my website under “videos”

Afresh: Do you have a website of any type?  (Name all options) (physical product and digital distribution)

Just for fun…..fill in the blanks!

Without music, I would be__unfullfilled____________.

Music is ____a creative expression_____________.

My music makes me feel ____emotional_____________.

I write the songs because ____it’s fun to be creative_____________.

Support music because _____songwriters are a cultural expression___________.

Afresh: We want to extend our warm wishes for your success and thank you for the awesome interview.  We hope we can attend one of your shows soon so keep us informed on your updates!

Thanks for doing an exclusive interview for Afresh Annie of Afresh Entertainment Magazine.  Thanks for your support, and we hope you will tell everyone to read this article.

Support live music in your area—get out and see a band perform live!

Thanks for “Keeping it fresh, live, real & rockin'”….to all great things


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