READ OUR EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW BETWEEN THE EDITOR AND HANNAH JANE KILE BELOW, AND VISIT HER OFFICIAL SITE HERE.
Do you have any musical influences that inspire your music? If so please elaborate on who that is and how they are influential to you.
I grew up listening to Ella Fitzgerald and she is such an inspiration to me. Ella came from a rocky upbringing and used her experiences to perform genuinely. I'm a huge fan of Bonnie Raitt; much of my ambition to be a guitarist came from watching her live videos. Some people pick up, that my music is a bit theatrical at times. I have an immense love for musical theater and I think it can come out in some of my performances.
Is there any particular venue in California that you love to perform at most (or is there a venue that you are yet to perform at, that you would love to soon)?
I always love to perform at the Sierra Nevada Big Room, in Chico, Ca. It's not only one of my favorite rooms in Northern California, but on the West Coast. It's beautiful and also intimate.
"They Almost Got Away Vol. 1" album artwork, Courtesy of Hannah Jane Kile
Describe what it feels like or the feelings you get when performing on stage.
"Performing on stage to a captive audience makes me feel whole. In those moments, I feel beautiful, I feel understood and I feel connected to something bigger than myself. "
-HANNAH JANE KILE
Do you have a general formula, when it comes to songwriting? For example, some artists write lyrics first and adapt to the sound after, or vice-versa, some create the sound first and write the words to fit the sound. What is the songwriting process like for you in particular?
Personally, I always start with the music. I heard somewhere that music begins when words no longer do the situation justice. When I'm feeling a certain emotion that I'd like to capture, I start with the music and match it to my emotion. Then the melody comes with the lyrics. I think this has resulted in my melodies and chord progressions being more interesting, but in exchange, my lyrics sometimes aren't as pointed or specific, as they could be if I started first with the lyrics.
Think back to the very first song you professionally wrote, produced and performed. Tell me what the creative process was like for you? How has your sound or style evolved since then?
I recorded my first album, titled 'Becoming Someone' in my senior year of high school. I'd finish around three and drive about 30 minutes to Grass Valley and sit in a room in the woods, trying to capture the best live performance. I think there's a lot of truth in one voice and one instrument. The majority of my first album was recorded this way. Since then, I've had the pleasure of exploring new colors and sounds, making my two new albums very explosive at times, but not forgetting to go back to my roots. There are quite a few songs that have just vocals and guitar, in some parts.
"I think there's a lot of truth in one voice and one instrument."
-HANNAH JANE KILE
In comparison to your Little Blue Heron album in 2015 to your new works in 2018, where do you think you have grown the most as a musician?
I think it's a tie between my lead guitar work and my vocals. I really learned how to serve a song on the electric guitar this time around, and I tried my very best to let my vocals be honest and present. I feel there is a significant difference from the other two albums.
"Little Blue Heron" album artwork, Courtesy of Hannah Jane Kile
What inspired you to drop two albums at the same time?
A lot of the credit actually goes to my drummer and sweetheart, Corey Strange. He slowly collected all of my old songs that I'd tossed away and pushed for them to be served in the studio. I'm very glad I listened to him and trusted him, when he asked me, "Let's just record one of these old tunes and see how it goes?". That led to the entirety of They Almost Got Away Vol.1; I hated these songs in the beginning and I'm so grateful we gave them a chance to fly. It was a form of self-love in the end. To release these songs that at one point in my life, made me feel embarrassed; these songs make me who I am. It was pretty sweet to get to know myself again through these old songs.
What was the first song you wrote on the newest records and the last song?
My first song I wrote on my album, They Almost Got Away Vol. 1, is called "Show Me Faith”. This song is desperate and lonely; wanting. I felt that a lot in High School as I had a lot of friends, but I never truly fit in. I also wanted to know what it was like to fall in love. Later on, I did and I got a few ballads out of it. Ha!
My newest song is, "To Be Loved Again", featured on my album Broken Girl's Anthem. I wrote this thinking about my Mom and how she sacrificed so much to take care of her family. She's been hurt so much and still has a heart full of love. I wanted to capture that feeling: of knowing that the people you love the most are the ones who can hurt you the most.
"Broken Girl's Anthem" album artwork, Courtesy of Hannah Jane Kile
"Broken Girl's Anthem" was written when I forgot what self love was. I wrote it for me, but also for others who don't know how to be kind to themselves, just yet."
-HANNAH JANE KILE
Are there any particular favorite songs from your catalog, that you personally enjoy performing most?
My favorite songs of mine to perform live are: Veon, Call On Me, and Broken Girl's Anthem. These songs evoke something from the audience that I love to see. Their reactions make the show that much more enjoyable to share.
My personal favorite track on Broken Girl’s Anthem is Earthquake. Tell me about the details of creating this song and what it means to you.
This song came from a very personal place. I was in a very unhealthy relationship and I didn't know who I was anymore. I knew it was going to end, but I didn't know when. It wasn't until I had a traumatic experience, where I wasn't taken care of the way I should. I finally realized that this wasn't love and I ended it. When we produced this song, I imagined a heroine's triumph in an 80's horror movie. It was a pleasure to have Joe Craven over to our house, to capture the wailing on the violin. The juxtaposition between vulnerable vocals and those instrumental explosions really brought it home for me and made me proud to put it on the album.
My personal favorite track on They Almost Got Away Vol. 1 is Lightning Strike. Tell me about the details of creating this song and what it means to you.
That's so funny! That was one of my least favorite songs to go on the album, until we recorded it. I've always loved folk music and storytelling through song, so I think this was my first crack at it so many years ago. I remember really liking the flirtatious strumming pattern, that mixed with those minor chords.
If you had to pick, lyrically, which song from each album do you think represents the full embodiment of each work?
"Broken Girl's Anthem" & "Mesmerized"! "Broken Girl's Anthem" is an album covering love in all it's forms and self love is the best place to start. A lot of the tracks in They Almost Got Away Vol. 1, have a combination of coarseness and hope, and I think "Mesmerized" really captures both of those feelings well.
Is there any additional information or inspiration you would like to share with our readers that would further inspire them?
"Broken Girl's Anthem" was written when I forgot what self love was. I wrote it for me, but also for others who don't know how to be kind to themselves, just yet. I hope this album lets them know that I see them. They are beautiful; maybe not in the movie star or glamorous magazine type of way, but in their own irreplaceable way. That's very special to me. I want them to know that they are loved.
Snapchat clip of Hannah Jane Kile performing, captured at Two Day Town Music Festival 2017, by the Editor for iTEM Magazine.
Tyler J. Drinnen, is the Founder and Editor in Chief of iTEM MAGAZINE,
a freelance fashion writer, poet,
photographer and abstract visual content producer.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and Media Studies from Sonoma State University, where he wrote a weekly Opinion Column For
The Star, dabbled with his own radio podcast format, titled Saturday Nite Scandal, and helped to create one of the first of 25 Professional Student Lead PR Firms in the USA.
From there on, he continued his work by interning with Sonoma Discoveries Magazine and then shortly after wrote and interned for Fashion School Daily, where he solidified his love for feature writing and working with emerging talents from around the world.
In December of 2016, he received an Honorary Master of Arts in Fashion Journalism from the Academy of Art University. And what an achievement that was, to be the first in his program to have graduated a full semester early. Bringing him to four degrees in a short five and a half years, nothing will stop him from bringing art to the eyes of many.
He has worked in the fashion industry for nearly a decade, from commercial retail management to corporate level ghost writing. Now - he the poet - T.J.D. takes his life public with the independent launch of the urban California lifestyle based fashion-art movement, iTEM MAGAZINE: A Platform For Rising Artists.