Jenni Reid has packed a lot of living into her 24 years. She has two albums of original acoustic material and has toured the country in support of her music, picking up influences as she goes. When she moved on from a former boyfriend, Reid decided she needed to spend a little “me” time to live and have some new experiences.
She chronicles many of those experiences on her first full-length CD “Cynical Romantics.” Reid will play a CD release concert June 19 at Jack Rabbits. Ashleigh Davis opens the show. The event marks the first time Reid will perform with a full band. Reid stopped to chat with EU Jacksonville on the way to her first practice session with the new band comprised of trusted friends and gifted musicians that she says will add a new fullness to her music.
“I’m excited and very nervous but I think it will be a great time. I think it will really enhance the sound that people are used to hearing,” she says. “It’s nerve wracking. I’m used to being onstage with just me and my guitar but with this album, I really grew a little and wrote songs where I was like ‘I hear a drum beat on this song’. I’m excited for people to finally see this part of me.”
As a singer and songwriter, Reid is at home on stage with just her guitar. Adding the element of a full band is breaking new ground even if that means putting her songs that reflect so much of her story into the hands of other musicians. “I told someone a while ago that if I ever did have a band, it was going to be with people that I love and people that I trust,” she says. “I found a great group of guys and girls and I trust them with this music.”
Reid says she was inspired by a self-described cynic she dated prior to writing the album. Post-break up, she found the experience gave her a new perspective on her life, love and her music. “I am a romantic but I can be really cynical. We broke up prior to the release of the record and looking at the songs from this new angle of being on my own again, it’s a cynical, romantic feel. I love love but sometimes love leaves you in a cynical state,” she says. “I like the idea of being a cynical romantic and I thought it was a good representation of the idea of all the different songs that are love songs in the past tense and hopefulness for the future.”
The eclectic collection of songs on Cynical Romantic shy away from the stripped down acoustic melodies and rock influences of her early material and into fresh, unfiltered territory. During the creative process, she didn’t play as many shows or go out on tour. She instead took the time to have some life experiences – and write about them.
“It became this strange collection of pop country. I call it edgy acoustic pop. Some people say I’m country and some say I’m not country enough. I’m definitely stuck in the middle of what I’ve created,” she says. “For me, writing songs is something I’m meant to do. It’s my therapy. It’s my hobby. It’s my job. It’s the love of my life.”
Reid plans to announce dates an upcoming tour but first, she hopes to return to some of spots around Jacksonville that first helped her to find her own voice. Cynical Romantics will be available on all online stores and www.JenniReidMusic.com, iTunes and Amazon.