Music comes from inside of us. There is no set standard that decides the way it escapes. Our recent find LeahJude blends genres to create a sound that is all hers.
We caught up with the up and coming artist as she releases her new album New Mind. Enjoy the interview:
First off, tell us about the name LeahJude. Why no space?
Leah was a nickname from when I was a kid and the Jude is for Saint Jude (my middle name) Taking away the space made my name more relevant in search engines and I liked the way it looked.
How would you describe your sound?
I would say it’s pretty hybridized. I love rap, and I love rock but there are also other genres I really enjoy. When I start making a beat that I’m going to use I usually don’t even have a specific genre or set of virtual instruments in mind. Just a melody. Everything else comes after and I’m almost always happy with the result.
Which artists have had the greatest influence on you?
There are so many. Tracy Chapman is a big one. Her political style and acoustic sound. I have always loved her message, music, and her voice. Eminem (of course) because of his lyrical style and flow. Finally Guns N’ Roses, Their clean use of instruments and powerful drums. Love them.
What is it that drives you to create original music?
Music is a reflection of us. I’ve always had trouble making and keeping friends, partners, jobs, everything really. I think because I’m so damn complicated as a person. My music allows me to express myself through a means that I feel like people can identify with. I try to match the beat to my lyrics. I always make the beat first and then lay down lyrics but if the lyrics have an especially sad or angry element I’ll tweak the beat, for instance I’ll throw in a guitar with some almost agonizing tones to match what I’m rapping about. I love that I have the freedom to do that composing my own beats, to make a song exactly how I want it. You hear me do that a lot in, House of Horrors.
We hear you have jumped into music full time in 2020. Not the easiest year so far. How have you been coping?
I always pick the worst time to do everything. In this case I almost feel like it worked to my advantage. When I had released “This is the Encore” everyone was quarantined. A lot of people were home consuming media and the album, as a result got more plays than I feel it would have. Everyone being in the same boat together has been interesting. How many times can you think of an example when the globe kind of, all ended up doing the same thing at the same time other than the Pokémon Go craze.
How did your album This is The Encore come together?
I was throwing together some of my music. Making beats jumping on them. I released it to see the reception. I still have issues with that album. I love the songs but I was so bad at EQing and mixing my vocals. I still struggle with that but I’ve improved quite a bit. I also didn’t feel that I fit on a lot of those beats. I was trying to see what kind of beats were popular rather than doing what my gut was telling me. “New Mind” is kind of my redemption album.
What do you hope the listener will take away from your songs?
“This is the Encore” had elements of frustration and anger. “New Mind” is motivational. A lot of the songs are about how we as humans, just settle. We settle with jobs we don’t like. We settle with people we don’t love. (Of course not in every case) but it happens a lot. We tend to gravitate toward safety. Why? I was guilty of it in so many aspects of my life and everyday I woke up completely miserable. I hated my job. I hated being told what to do. Great I had money but at what cost? “New Mind” encourages the listener to break out of their personal box. Focus on bettering their lives instead of trying to melt into a status quo they don’t identify with or aren’t fulfilled by.
Give us a look at the future for LeahJude.
I’d love to become successful in the music industry. It’s hard and the days are long at times. I get angry because I can’t get things right. There are road blocks and challenges everywhere, everyday. That’s what I love most about it. I’m also constantly doubted and that motivates me even more. When I’m told I can’t do something I do it. It fuels me. Knowing that a lot of people have low expectations of my future in music is most likely going to propel me into success even faster because I’m not going to stop. I am relentless and I’ve finally found my passion and a reason to wake up happy. I love music. I always have. This is what I’m doing and this is what’s I’ll continue doing.
Keep up with LeahJude on INSTAGRAM.