Apologetically Canadian: Jess Moskaluke

Apologetically Canadian

You’re returning to the UK later this year, how excited are you for that tour? 

I’ve only been to Ireland, once in my life. So, I’m really looking forward to going there. I feel like I’m a pro at London, we’ve only been twice but that’s a lot now to us. I think I’m excited to see a few new places like, Ireland as well as Scotland. So hopefully we’ll see some fans that we’ve already seen before and hopefully meet some new ones. Also, being able to show my label mates what we’ve been working on in the last little bit over in the UK, that will be exciting.  

Can you tell me a little bit about the writing process of your song ‘Heartbreaker’?  

I like my songs to be a little bit ambiguous. I love, when I listen to a song, to put my own story on it. I’m like, oh my gosh, that’s just like when someone did this to me. I don’t know if that’s what the writer meant by that song, I don’t know if that’s their experience when they were writing it. But I think that that’s so important that we feel ourselves and we insert ourselves into those storylines. So I won’t share my personal story behind it because I don’t want anyone to think that theirs is wrong. But what I can say, when we wrote that song, we wrote it to be a bit of a vocal break for me. I went on my very first headline tour last fall called the map dot tour here in Canada. We very quickly realised that 99.9% of my songs are very vocally challenging. There’s not a moment in the set where I get to just kind of take a break. So we wrote it to be an active break I guess, so that we could keep the show going and keep the energy high. So that’s kind of where Heartbreaker was born from. 

I loved your record the demos. I read about this, you weren’t necessarily setting out to put out a record at the time. Can you tell me a little bit about that?  

So, the demos came out during the height of COVID. It was a combination of things, it was time that I put out a record, it had been a minute, the world was in shambles and we all, myself included, needed some new music. But I couldn’t get into the studio because they were all shut down. So it was looking a little grim to go and record new music, and everything I had been writing was on Zoom and that’s weird. So I realised, there’s a ton of songs that I’ve written that I love that I had demoed and we had never used. It wasn’t that they were bad songs, it was just timing that they hadn’t got used and I thought that’s kind of a waste. So we decided to make some tweaks to some of those demos just remotely, we had my producer just kind of do what he could and I did what I could from my closet. It’s kind of like a peek behind the curtain of a songwriter. 

What’s next for you?  

It’s a big year for new music for us, we have two new albums coming out. We have the Canadian Country Music Awards then the UK tour and I also have a project called handpicked by Jess, which we’re working pretty hard on to get released for this November. It’s a curated box of some of my favourite items. We do one box a year, and it sells out every time. So right now we’re kind of just in the thick of creating all of that. 

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Zoe Hodges, Editor, Maverick Magazine
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