We caught up with singer-songwriter and all round mega babe July Jones to chat musical inspo, guilty pleasure tracks and breaking into the industry…
Tell us about yourself…
I’m a girl, named after the month I was born in, living in London, writing, producing and singing big pop songs.
When did you realise you wanted to make music?
My family enrolled me into a classical music school when I was 6. I was trained in theory, piano and flute. By the age of 11 I realised my voice was really soulful, so I started taking singing lessons where I was introduced to soul and jazz music.
In these lessons, instead of simply singing covers of original songs, my teacher would make me sing my own melodies (toplines) over the instrumentals and essentially write my own songs to the arrangements of big hits.
Eventually, I started posting covers on YouTube when one cover in particular (Adele – no longer online I’m afraid though) happened to go viral which grabbed the attention of labels. I signed my first record deal at the age of 14 but left the deal four years later as it wasn’t right for me. Then, I moved to London and haven’t looked back since.
You’ve just released your debut single ‘Jump In The Water’, what can we expect?
We are in the process of releasing the remixes of Jump in the Water. A ‘stripped’ version of the track has been released, along with a live session I shot with UMA Music in a hotel room in East London. After that, I have a pop-remix being released followed up by a really cool collaboration with grime artist, Mugun. There’s a lot of love left in this single.
After that, I am beyond excited about the material that is coming out later this year. I’ve worked so hard to develop my sound and I finally found myself a kind of… dark-electronic-pop sound. We’ll be releasing singles throughout the year, all accompanied with significant visuals.
What was the inspo behind the track?
Jump in the Water talks about fully immersing yourself in something you fully believe in, not just going in half-way, whether it is love, life, or whatever you’re passionate about, I feel like when we want to achieve something we should dedicate our whole selves to it.
What does a day in the life of you look like?
Honestly, there is not a day in my life that looks the same. That said, a typical day would be me waking up around 8am, making time for breakfast and taking care of myself, whether it is running, washing my hair or something else – I do it all in the morning.
I get in the studio around 11am (I’m in session almost every day), where I’ll stay for 8-12 hours and get home in the evening. If the song is good enough we’ll probably even stay in the studio until early the next morning.
My aim is to always write and record a song every day I’m in the studio to a ‘demo level’, and that way, I’m continually building my material and stacking up songs very fast.
Photography: Iulia Matei
What’s the best gig you’ve ever played?
So far my favourite has definitely been London Pride. The energy, people and community is so strong and filled with love, it’s insane.
Who did you listen to growing up?
I’ve listened to a lot of pop, I was always interested in what’s next in the pop industry so I followed the trends, all the way from Rihanna to underground artists, I knew all the words to the songs.
What’s your guilty pleasure track?
Ariana Grande – Into You
What’s the last album you listened to all the way through?
What’s been your career highlight/proudest moment?
Performing at Pride, singing the songs I believed in and being openly bisexual.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
Lorde, The Weekend, Purity Ring, LP, Halsey, Rihanna
What advice do you have for aspiring artists trying to break into the industry?
Never stop writing songs, you can never have too many songs.
You can only listen to one album for the rest of your life, what is it?
Rihanna – Talk That Talk
Where can we see you perform next?
The next show I’m doing is actually a private gig for one of the world’s biggest advertising agencies. After that, my management has me on a few showcases throughout the year but what we’re really doing is ramping up the live plans for 2018 which is when I’ll be everywhere.
Follow me on social media and you’ll be sure to see where and when my next shows you can come to will be.
What’s on the agenda for the rest of 2017?
Four or five more single releases and a whole lotta fun with it.