Being back in Nashville, I have the opportunity to sit down with many of the amazing musicians in the area. One of these musicians is Stella Jones. With her looks, talent, and crisp name to top it off, Stella continues to prove herself as a rising figure in the industry. Be sure to check out her music video for ‘Underwater’, and enjoy the interview!
1. Introduce yourself (state name, where you’re from, how long you’ve been making music, etc … )
“My name is Stella Jones. I am from Chesapeake, Virginia. It’s about 30 minutes from the Atlantic Ocean. I have been singing all my life, but I didn’t start to take it seriously until I was around 16. That is also when I started writing songs. I’m 19 years old. I’m a sophomore at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee currently studying psychology. It’s another passion of mine besides music. I self-taught myself guitar for about a year and then took lessons for about a year as well. I mainly write my songs on guitar. I dabble a little in piano, but guitar is mainly what I use for my music.”
2. Why do you make music?
“I make music because I absolutely love it. Music is the reason I wake up in the morning. I am obsessed with it. If I’m not creating it, I’m either listening to it or talking about it. It is my passion. Music, especially songwriting, is a way for me to get my thoughts out. It helps me understand what I’m thinking/feeling. The same goes with the actual music itself. I can express myself and my thoughts through the feel and tone that the music sets for the song. So I also started making music for self-expression as well.”
3. How has your style changed since you left Chesapeake, VA?
“When I started writing songs at home in Chesapeake, they were more acoustic, almost country driven songs. When I moved to Nashville about a year ago, I decided to make the change into pop music. It has always been the type of music I had always wanted to make, I just never had the resources to do so before moving to Nashville.”
4. What influential moment has affected your style of music the most?
“I don’t think there was ever a definite moment in my life that has affected my style. I think for me it’s more of a collection of smaller moments in my life. I love music that can make people sing along to and have a good time. So every time I was in the car with my friends singing to the radio or I was at a school dance, all of those moments drove me to make music that people can enjoy.”
5. What do you dislike about the current state of the music industry?
“As a songwriter, it’s hard for me to see songwriters and publishers struggle with royalties. Just a few months ago, The Department of Justice ruled that it will not change an old system that requires royalty collection societies, like BMI and ASCAP, to license songs to everyone at a fixed rate. This is tough to see because the music industry today is moving at such a fast rate and evolving so quickly with things like streaming services, that did not exist years ago when this system was created.”
6. If you could pick two artists that influenced your style to perform, alive or deceased, who would they be and why?
“Betty Who would definitely be a huge influence for my music career. My EP “Potential’ was heavily influenced by her. Every single song Betty makes just makes you want to dance and sing along. She makes big pop anthems. That is what I wanted to do with “Potential” was to bring that energy to the music, especially when it comes to performing it live. Another artist that has influenced me is John Mayer. I really admire the way he can be singing to thousands of people in the crowd, but can still make a huge concert seem super intimate and special for the fans.”
7. When you’re not making music, what do you do for fun?
“I have been a competitive swimmer since I was 8 years old. So I love to swim, go to the beach, anything with water involved really. I love to go shopping and I love reading. I’m a huge foodie so I love to go out to eat and try new foods. I also love spending time with my dog, Lexi. She is the light of my life. 8. Explain your writing process. How do you come up with your lyrics? For the most part, when I sit down to write, I have an idea of where I want the song to go. I then will literally start to list everything thought, feeling, emotion, anything that comes to my mind about the topic I’m trying to write about. Then I go through and start to piece things together from my list and start to write the song. The melody and music will come around this time as well when I’m piecing together the lyrics. Sometimes my writing process can take minutes, sometimes weeks.”
9. What is music to you?
“Music to me is a way of communication. I love the fact that when something is written as a lyric or in a song it, resonates far more with someone rather that being spoken as words. Music is a universal language that everyone can appreciate and recognize.”
10. What’s next?
“Well I just finished filming my first music video for one of my songs “Underwater” I had an amazing director, Jake Brinn and we filmed a big part of the video underwater which was so amazing to do. For the next few months though, I plan to continue to promote “Potential” and to play as many live shows as I possibly can. I would eventually love to put out a full-length album as well, but for now promoting my new EP is the goal.”
Listen to ‘Underwater’ by Stella Jones and follow her socials for more!