By Asia Sheppard
Jessica Lea Mayfield is a quiet riot. This Kent, Ohio native hypnotizes and mesmerizes with her haunting voice and stirring lyrics. Her new album, Make My Head Sing . . . (which will be released on April 15) is just what the doctor ordered. In a world where the music is turning into more of audio noise, her music breaks through with minimalist driving guitars and her mysterious vocals that can be heard on her single, “Oblivious.” Her music is intoxicating as it is heartbreaking and passionate. She is an old soul with the spirit of Johnny Cash and the look of a tragically beautiful blond June Carter.
CCD: You started music at a young age. How have you grown as an artist?
JLM: I feel like with this new record I’ve finally stepped into myself. It’s always felt a little off to me, putting myself out there as a kid and a teen, when I wasn’t even sure who I was.
CCD: Your music invokes such emotion and seems to tell a story. What is your songwriting process? Do you ever get writer’s block?
JLM: My songwriting has changed since the last two records, I used to write music around lyrics, and now it’s the other way around. I’m figuring out new ways to express myself.
CCD: I am counting down to when your new album, Make my Head Sing… comes out. Can you give a hint on what to anticipate?
JLM: This record is the product of my husband getting to know me and how I think, and then us teaming up to bring to life the album I had always envisioned. The whole record is me on guitar, my husband Jesse Newport on bass, and friend Matt Martin on drums.
CCD: You have such a unique and distinctive style. How would you describe your music?
JLM: Hell, I don’t know, I try not to think about it or put myself in a box too much, honestly.
CCD: When you aren’t busy being a rockstar how do you spend your time?
JLM: Drinking blood.
CCD: You are a veteran of the road. How do you survive when you are on a tour?
JLM: It’s more like how do I survive when I’m not on a tour, I like being home but never for too long. I need to be moving, I need to have a schedule.
CCD: Important question: If you could go on tour with any classic rock legend (dead or alive) who would it be?
JLM: Stone Temple Pilots
CCD: What is currently playing on your ITunes? What do you jam out to?
JLM: Queens of The Stone Age.
CCD: You are pretty well known for your amazing renditions of bluegrass songs. What is your favorite song to cover and why?
JLM: I enjoy a good acapella quartet from time to time, I appreciate the musicianship and harmonies that bluegrass music has to offer. I wouldn’t say I have a favorite song to cover, it’s all fun.
Jessica Lea Mayfield will play at 11:40 pm at The Garage on April 5.
PhuzzPhest is one of North Carolina’s premiere indie music festivals and will be coming at you April 4-6. You can find dates, times and tickets for Phuzzphest HERE. Please check back to CCD throughout the week and into the weekend for our coverage of PhuzzPhest.
You can read Asia’s interview with Phuzz Phest musician Miss Eaves HERE.
You can read Asia’s interview with Phuzz Phest band All Them Witches HERE.