December 11, 2018 Artist to Watch: Jacye Guerin
On a Life Lived & Felt Through Music.
Jacye Guerin has lived in Louisiana her whole live, so we can’t exactly say she’s new in town, but her gift for music has blossomed recently with the release of her first fully original album titled That Was Then. Her songs are soulful and heartfelt, just like her personality. We took some time to talk to her about her music and where she gets her influence from.
What are your thoughts on the music opportunities in Baton Rouge?
Baton Rouge has given me a chance and a start. It has been my foundation for playing live music. Although competition can be tough sometimes with the younger generation just starting out I have appreciated all the opportunities it has given me. I have been playing live music in Baton Rouge since 2007 and hope no matter where this journey takes me to always return and call it home.
Who are your musical influences?
Gospel music has always had a true influence on my life and has a way of bringing me back to my roots. Some of my favorites include Rev. Barnes & Connie Brown, Aretha Franklin, and Elvis. I have also been greatly inspired by Janis Joplin, Wynonna Judd, Otis Redding, Etta James, Amy Winehouse, and Ronnie Eades.
What do you like about the culture of Baton Rouge?
Baton Rouge can be very diverse, welcoming and supporting those with a creative mind and big dreams. I have appreciated that acceptance, and it has encouraged me to continue to be myself.
How did you begin your work as a singer/songwriter?
When I was six years old my grandma and grandpa use to bring my little sister and I to the local nursing home to perform for the residents. My grandma would make us costumes and teach us songs from the 1920’s and 1930’s for us to put on a show. As I got older music really became the biggest part of me. At fifteen I started writing music and poetry to cope with being an adolescent in a world where I didn’t fit in. Around the same time my dad introduced me to Janis Joplin. I heard my pain in her voice and couldn’t get enough. From the moment I heard “Me and Bobby Mcgee” I wanted to be a rock star!
Tell us about your background and where you’re from.
I grew up barefoot on the banks of Plaquemine bayou where fishing and swimming were something you learned to do before you could walk. We lived “back of town” as folks from Plaquemine would call it on a street with so little traffic we could have entire baseball games and never be interrupted by a passing car. Being homeschooled and not having to be in a classroom everyday allowed for plenty of time at grandma’s house where I spent most of my days. It was here that I learned most about music, drawing, painting, and putting on a show. My grandma had a way of pulling out talents you had and teaching you how to really bring them to life. I spent most of my evenings roasting marshmallows and singing around a campfire playing in small tents/forts we would build in the front yard until my dad would call me inside with a loud yell of my name from the front porch. It never failed no matter where I was I could hear daddy’s call. When I was ten I was starting to learn there were more people my age that existed in the world other than the three friends I had on the end of my street. I begged my mom to send me to school and my wish was granted. We moved to the small town of Brusly Louisiana, about ten miles north of Plaquemine and I started school in the fifth grade. It was tough from day one to fit into a group of kids that had known each other since pre-K. I was new and I was different. When I got to high school I really started to focus on my singing. Junior year I was invited to Hollywood California to be on an Exposure Entertainment tv show and couldn’t get out of town fast enough. Around the same time my grandma passed away taking most of me with her. I didn’t have any real experience with death until hers and for some reason I couldn’t wrap my mind around the fact that I couldn’t call her to tell her my latest news. It was at this point in life that I really turned to music as it made me feel close to her. I felt at times it was all that I had left. As a young adult I made more adventure for myself than I could handle. After getting into trouble at twenty I found myself on my knees in a place I never could have imagined being. Growing up in church and having the background I did I knew the only option I had was to turn to God, and I did. I turned my life around at twenty three promising in a letter to my dad that I would do something with my talents, and I held to my word. In 2007 I joined my first cover band and have played live music for a living since. In 2009 I wrote my first real song and that’s where it all started for me as a songwriter. I continued writing after experiencing heart break a couple times and quickly realized this was what I wanted to do the rest of my life. After taking one step God took three and before I knew it I was engaged to the love of my life and was inspired to finish my album on a happy note. Blessed, I found myself in a studio with some of the most legendary musicians in the world recording my own music. In August 2018 I released my first original album “That Was Then" with Andreas Werner through Crazy Chester Records with very successful results. Within two months the album had made its way across the US and as far abroad as Switzerland. I tell you my story to say this, trust in God with all your heart, dream so big they don’t believe you, and always always always be kind!
Do you have any upcoming events where people can see you perform live?
My next event will be Thursday December 13th 6:30pm-8:30pm at the Bocage shopping center in the atrium. I also have a full schedule that can be found at www.Jacye.com.
My album, “That Was Then”, can be found on iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, and CD Baby.