Published on July 24th, 2020 | by MuzikScribe0
Glenn Jones: Timeless
Now let’s hop right into your latest single “Trust In Me” featuring Genobia Jeter — Tell me about this particular composition? How did it come to fruition?
“Trust In Me” is a song that I wrote a few years ago. And usually when I write a song, it’s all about me being inspired by someone who I’ve shared a story with, or someone shared an experience with me. It could also be something that I possibly experienced myself. In writing songs, I try to write what I know. There have been times when I have been through situations; peaks and valleys. I also try to encourage myself, so I put my feelings on paper and that’s how “Trust In Me” came about. Because of things I have been through from time to time and just be able to encourage myself, and that’s how “Trust In Me” was born.
“Trust In Me” comes courtesy of your exceedingly overdue, still forthcoming new solo collection — First things first, why such a lengthy delay between projects?
The reason why it has taken a while for me to complete my record…as you know, the business now is, I guess you can say, about 90% independent. So, when you are working on a project, sometimes you’re in stages. It’s about funding. It’s about being able to work with the people that you want to work with, whether they are available or not. The record business has changed so much, radio has changed so much…until you have the wiggle room, and the ability to take your time and work on your project as you see fit and work on it as (it) comes. A lot of times you don’t just do a record, and put out the first thing that you have written. I’ve recorded about 30 songs in the past few years that have not been released. I wanted the best songs that I could possibly have to present on this new CD, and I believe that that is what I have done.
Any specific details; i.e. title, favorite selection(s), producer(s) credit(s), cameo appearance(s), etcetera, that you can reveal and / or divulge regarding upcoming said set at this particular point in time?
On this record, I have been very fortunate. The first single from this album and the title track was, “Love By Design.” I was fortunate enough to get my good friend and sister, Regina Belle, to sing the song with me. She did an amazing job! The song is beautiful…as a matter of fact, the song was #1 Jazz Vocal in Billboard, and we won Song of the Year with Soul Tracks. I also have the second single, “You and Me,” which features Nick Colionne, who is an amazing Smooth Jazz guitar player. I had never worked with Nick before. However, we gave him a call and asked him if he would be willing to do the record, and it was a blessing. Also on the record, I feature on one song, “All Of My Heart,” my good friend, Kim Waters, on sax, and as usual he is always amazing. This is another great song. On another track, “Family Time,” I have my niece, Y’Anna Crawley, my wife Genobia Jeter’s niece, and my niece through marriage. Y’Anna Crawley is the Sunday Best winner of 2009. She appears on the record singing a song called “Family Time.” It’s such a great song. It’s a stepper’s and family reunion type song. It was written by a guy named James Day, and my good friend, Chuckii Booker, produced the record. That also reminds me that Chuckii produced a second song on the album called, “Cookout.” He wrote, co-wrote, and produced “Cookout,” so I have two songs where Chuckii is involved in the record. As you know, “Trust In Me” is the song that Genobia Jeter is featured on.
How then does this new solo entry either differ and / or compare to previous bodies of work?
I try to be consistent with whatever I do. I think this record is different, but at the same time like the previous records I’ve done. With me, it’s all about the song. The song is the nucleus, and it’s all about having a great song. To me, that’s what makes music timely, but timeless. And this is always my intention when I go in to record a project; to have music that’s timely, but timeless. Also, it’s just solid melodies and great lyrics. Of course, you must keep up with the times from a production standpoint, sonically the record must sound a certain way. I think that we accomplished that. I’m always trying to maintain the quality of my records, so my fans that I have made over the years will be happy with my new music and I can make some new fans.
Over the past 14 plus years, I have been working on my record. As I said, I have written and recorded many songs which I have in the can. I’ve been touring over in Europe, South Africa, Japan. I do that, and I try to spend as much time with my family. I have a non-profit organization called The Love Jones Foundation, and I’m involved with that heavily. We go into senior citizen facilities, and we love on the senior citizens. These are folks that are considered the forgotten; seniors. I take my band into the facility, and I perform a concert for them with songs from Frank Sinatra, Nat King Cole, Andre Crouch, Billie Holiday…many of the songs they would remember. I’m just trying to give something back because a lot of people in those facilities were musicians and singers early on in life. And they all need to be encouraged, so I use my music to encourage them.
Switching gears here, how has not only the industry itself, but even more-so you as an individual, either changed and / or evolved since your whole inception into music?
I think the music business has changed in so many ways. Like I said previously in regards to records, radio, and retail, everything is different now. It is basically all about being independent and not having that big machinery that we used to have behind us. That was when the record company would come behind us and pay for all of the recording, marketing, promotions and public relations. It’s no longer that, so there’s a positive side to that because it puts you in a position where you have to do what they used to do in order to get the record played or heard in the marketplace. It’s a good thing because it lets you have more creative control. That’s the thing that has changed for me. Being able to say what kind of record I want, instead of some A&R person telling me what kind of record they think that I should have.
Longevity, what do you attribute yours too?
I attribute my longevity to being connected to my higher power. I attribute it to God’s favor. It’s His favor because there have been many people who have been doing what I do for just as long or longer than I have. He has kept me and sustained me. I also contribute it to being true to who I am, too, musically. I create the kind of records and music that has been successful for me. Also, the kind of music my fans want to hear, and I am faithful to this, too.
What do you want people to get from your music?
I want people to be inspired. I want people to get a good feeling and to be uplifted. I want them to be encouraged. I want them to believe in love and believe in what love can do. I want them to realize that it is alright to love one another. You know, that’s what we are supposed to do. We are supposed to love our fellow man, fellow women. And love the person we’ve chosen to live our life with. We are supposed to love our families. We are supposed to love our children, and basically that is what my music is about. My music is about being open to walk in somebody else’s shoes and to have empathy for other people, and to understand that we are all in this thing together.
As a songwriter, where do you actually draw inspiration from? And, please explain your overall creative process…
I draw inspiration from many different places; such as other artists, hearing another songwriter’s song. I try to express it in my own way. You have a thought or idea, and it can be expressed in a thousand different ways. I then try to interpret it my way, and put that on paper. I could be riding and pass a billboard and see something that’s written. I remember I wrote a Gospel song one time called “Jesus Remembers.” I saw it on a billboard, and I ended up writing a song “Jesus Remembers When Others Forget.” There are so many different things…I could see a movie or see a kid playing, or a flower or anything. I can hear a melody or hear some string lines from an old movie that I might be watching, and that might inspire me…and not to mention, so many great artists who have come before me; Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, Donny Hathaway, Stevie Wonder, Gladys Knight, Dionne Warwick…all of these artists…there are so many great songwriters and composers, so I’m inspired by a lot of them.
What has been your greatest career achievement(s), at least thus far anyway?
My greatest career achievement has been my longevity for sure. I would say being able to maintain my gift that God has given me all these years. Being able to sing the songs that I recorded and I wrote 30 plus years ago. Still being able to go out and perform those songs. To me, these are my greatest career achievements.
What’s an average day like for you?
I guess that has changed somewhat now since the Pandemic state we are living in. I wake-up and I thank God first of all for opening my eyes every day. Talk to Him a little bit, you know. Brush my teeth, wash my face. I go into the kitchen, and I cook me some breakfast. I go through emails and my messages. I make my phone calls, and, hopefully, I can pay some bills 🙂 and see what’s happening with those 🙂 During the course of the day, I might pick my guitar up and play and exercise a little on that. Somedays, if I feel up to it, I might ride my bike. I check on my friends and my loved ones. I just take it as it comes. One day at a time. I do whatever I feel like doing. Right now, I’m just trying to stay in a positive frame of mind because of what we are going through, you know. Being sheltered in place, for the most part, because I can’t go out and perform like I used to. And that’s a hard thing to do because I’ve been doing it since I was a kid, and that’s what I miss. But then I’m at home, so I perform for myself. I sing for myself. I try songs that other artists have recorded or sung that I’ve never sung. I try my hand at that. I just try to keep a positive frame of mind, and I keep busy.
Please discuss how you interact with and respond to fans…
I love my fans. They have been loyal to me for so many years; for decades. There are many of them that wait to hear new music, or they wait to see me do something on social media. When I was able to get out and do my shows, I always do a meet and greet every night. Every time I perform, I host a meet and greet. I come right off the stage, and I go straight to my merchandise table. When we go out, we take pictures and I sign autographs. They have stories that they want to tell me about certain songs that I recorded, and how it affected them in different periods in their life. It’s a lot of fun, and sometimes the stories get to be a little too long because I have a long line of people waiting to meet me. That’s one of the best parts, to know and to hear and to see the effect that your music has had on people’s lives that you’ve never met before. You get to know that they are in your corner, and that they appreciate you and that they admire you. So, I am always glad to meet fans. We recently started the Official Glenn Jones Fan Club, which can be reached on my website: www.glennjonesmusic.com.
What is your favorite part about this line of work? Your least favorite? Why?
My favorite part about this line of work is meeting the fans and performing, and getting that love from them. Getting that instant gratification because when you make a record you send it out, it’s played on the radio or in whatever format released, so you don’t get a chance to see how people respond to it or how it moves them. I guess this is one of my favorite parts about being in the music business. Also, traveling. People that (you) would never have met if you weren’t an artist, and if you were not traveling and performing so much. I’ve met some great people, and I have met some people who have stayed with me for years. People who I have stayed friends with, and we’ve become true friends, too.
What advice would you have for someone wanting to follow in your footsteps?
I’m not sure what kind of advice I would give because everybody’s path is different. What might work for me might not work for you. They say that timing is everything, and being in the right place is important, too. So what I can say is, be on top of your craft so when that opportunity comes you are ready. Also, learn the business for yourself. Try to build on your songwriting and your production skills. At the end of the day it’s all about the music, and if you find your own niche from a writing and production standpoint then you are self-contained, and that is the best thing in the world. And, who can do you better than you?
And, lastly, what’s next for you, Glenn?
Right now as far as I can see is to release the full project. Actually, I’m going to release an EP because I have a lot of music that I recorded (that) my company will release. I will keep writing, and I will continue to nurture new talent. My record label is called Talent Room Entertainment, so I will be working with the label to give other people an opportunity and a chance. I will be working with talent from a production and songwriting standpoint to present some new talent to the world. Music is my life; that’s the only work I’ve ever done. I will continue to work with my foundation, The Love Jones Foundation. However, all of this is contingent on when we can get back to normal and when the market opens to go back on tour to support your music. You know when I release a record, I’m used to getting out to promote and support the project; doing mini-tours, meeting people at radio, and the people who are actually trying to help me get the spins I need to get the record heard in their marketplace. So hopefully soon things will open up, and we will have gotten on the other side of this thing. It will be great to just get out and see my people, my supporters.
Is there anything I left out, or just plain forgot to mention?
Any “closing” thought(s) for our readers?
Well in closing, I just want to say that I appreciate the loyalty that I have received over the years. I really appreciate my fans. The people who love me, people who I have never laid eyes on. People who have been encouraged because of what I do. They understand the love and sincerity that I pour into my projects. “It’s all love,” as my good friend Chris “Big Dog” says. Chris Davis, he’s the cat that produced several songs on this album. He’s a major producer in the Smooth Jazz genre. But it’s all in love, and I just want to thank people for their support. I hope you stay well. Please wear your mask! Wash your hands. And follow the medical advice given, and stop using your mask for a chin strap! I’ve seen a lot of people do this. They have on a mask and not really wear it properly. Stay in prayer…and if there is something you can do to help somebody, then do it! Let’s lift each other up and help one another, please. Thank you.
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