When writing songs, I try to focus on writing a
great song that stands alone, regardless of production and
instrumentation. Stylistically, I gravitate toward the emotive
pop-singer-and-songwriter genre. I play both piano and guitar, and
write very different songs on each.
Life is the inspiration: anything that makes my
heart beat faster and stirs my compassion. I draw from experiences
I face personally, as well as stories I hear, or films I see. Most
of the songs that are personal to me are the most honest in their
lyrics, and tend to be my favourites. The more I discover about
this beautiful life, the more I have to write about.
My new album is called Faithful, and
is set to be released on 1 June. I've never been more excited to
share a project with the world.
With the release of my previous album,
Jealous, I was blessed with some amazing
opportunities, and had the chance to learn and grow as a person and
an artist. The song "Jealous of the Angels" brought so much healing
for me personally, and I was able to connect with fans on such a
personal level. The entire process opened my heart and enhanced my
desire to write songs that bring people strength, encouragement,
and hope. I think my co-writers and I have done that with this new
album, and I'm excited to see the way God chooses to use it.
I feel blessed for the amazing opportunities I've had
over the past few years. It's humbling to know that people
are connecting with the music. I pray that people are encouraged
and inspired by the music, that it brings them strength and hope
during the challenging moments in life.
I feel incredibly blessed to be a full-time
musician. Performing, song-writing, and recording have
been paying my bills for the past five years. I have a passion for
teaching and encouraging others to chase their dreams, and I've
conducted song-writing workshops at various schools throughout the
United States. It makes my heart so happy to see students get
excited about creating and expressing themselves musically.
I was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. My
family relocated to Waconia, Minnesota, however, by the time I was
two years of age, and I lived in that area until I was 18.
I loved my experience growing up in small-town
Minnesota, and I think it's a big part of who I am. I
travel there a few times a year to perform and visit family. My
husband and I lived down the street from each other growing up, and
while my family has since moved to other parts of the US, his
family is still back in Minnesota.
I was involved in every musical offering our school
had: show choir, musical theatre, concert choir, band,
etc. I had my first experiences in a recording studio at 16 for a
Blues Americana roots band called Travelled Ground. I learned so
much through performing with them at different venues around the
area, and singing on all four of their albums. I still perform with
them when I'm back in Minnesota. They gave me countless
opportunities to perform and grow as an artist. I would cover
artists such as Bonnie Raitt, Bill Withers, and Janis Joplin, which
taught me to sing with emotion.
I love my family so much. My mom is my best
friend and biggest cheerleader. Jeff is a protective big brother
with a heart of gold. My mother has always encouraged my brother
and me to follow our dreams. Although Jeff lives in Colorado, and I
live in Tennessee, we have had many opportunities to perform
together, which truly brings us all so much joy. We've been through
a lot together, but in some ways that's only brought us closer.
My dad was an incredible man, full of so much
faith, life, and love. He encouraged us to flourish musically, and
I have so many beautiful memories of the four of us sitting around
dad's guitar or the piano, singing together. He was a businessman
who always wanted to write songs and play music when he retired. He
never got that chance.
It was heartbreaking to lose him when I was
ten. Quite honestly, I was confused and angry at God for
taking my hero away. Through that grieving process I turned to
song-writing, and started to express myself that way.
Watching my mum raise my brother and me after losing our
father, the love of her life, with so much grace, had a
huge impact on me. Her encouragement, love, and strength are things
that I truly admire. And I've had some amazing mentors, friends,
teachers, and pastors who have helped shape me into the person I've
become, and I'm so grateful for the wisdom they've shared.
I've known about God my entire life. I grew up
in a Christian home, going to church on Sundays, and singing in the
church choirs. When I was 15, I attended a Christian youth event
called Acquire the Fire in Minneapolis, and it truly changed my
life. I experienced God in a way I never had before, and I
committed my life to him right then and there. His presence was so
strong it moved me to uncontrollable happy tears. I felt an
unexplainable peace and love.
I have seen God move in some really amazing ways over
the past few years. Through "Jealous of the Angels", I saw
the worst day of my life turn into a song that not only helped me
to comfort and heal, but has also touched people around the world.
I'm humbled by the opportunities I've been given, watching the song
go to number one in the UK, performing it at the Grand Ole Opry,
but, most importantly, the conversations I've had with people who
have found comfort, hope, and healing in this song, and others.
I attend an amazing church in Nashville where
I've been leading worship, and have really found a beautiful
community of people to help me grow in my faith.
Yes, I believe God has blessed me with the gifts to
write and perform music, and that all the songs in my
catalogue have been given to me by him. I believe he can open doors
no man can shut, and that he has a unique and perfect plan for my
life. While some days it's hard to trust in that, at my core it is
what I believe, and I know that it's my purpose to write and create
music, and my mission to share it with the world.
I love travelling. Each place has something so
beautiful and unique to it that I'm reluctant to pick a favourite.
Over the past few years I've had the chance to travel to the United
Kingdom a great deal, which has always been a dream of mine, and
this June I will be spending a month touring Germany, which I am
really looking forward to.
I'd like to continue touring new areas, sharing
the music with new people and collaborating with musicians and
artists. I love what I do, and am grateful that I get to wake up
and make music every day. There are some really beautiful venues in
this world that I've dreamt of performing in, including the Royal
Albert Hall in London, and Carnegie Hall in New York.
I'm not sure if it's my favourite sound, but
silence is reassuring. There's something about quiet time in prayer
and stillness, especially in the morning, which centres me. It
helps me to focus on my blessings and silence any negativity I
might be struggling with.
I'm not sure if it was truly anger, shock, or
heartbreak. But after reading about the Kenya attack, I was very
There are so many things that bring me great joy in this
life. I love performing and creating music, I love
spending time with the people I love most, and I absolutely love
leading worship. All of these things fill my heart.
I do pray. I pray prayers of gratefulness for
this wonderful life. I pray that God will use the songs he's given
me to touch the hearts of hurting people around the world. I pray
for protection and covering over myself and for my loved ones. I
pray for this world, and that peace would fall upon it. I pray that
God would guide me along the path he has set out for me, and I pray
for forgiveness for the times I fall short.
In this moment, I wish I could have a few hours
alone with my dad, if I found myself locked in a church. I feel
like I lost so much time with him. He's been gone for a little over
19 years now, and I was so young when we lost him. I would love to
have a conversation about life, music, love, and faith with him,
now that I'm an adult.
Jenn Bostic was talking to Terence Handley MacMath.