Tameca Jones / by E

What got you interested in music?

Tameca Jones: I've always been interested in music but it wasn't until I had my twins - I became pregnant with twins in college, I was an English major at Baylor and I decided to become an entertainment attorney, for some reason, and I got pregnant with twins - and after I had them I had to figure out some kind of career path and I always knew that I could sing, so I just decided to make money that way. It was kind of the only thing I could do, because I have narcolepsy and an 8-5 job just wasn't the best for me 'cause I'd have to drive long distances and I'd be sleepy and I'm a single mother of twins, so I just kind of went into music as a desperate attempt to make a living at something that I knew I could do.

Which artists have you been influenced by?

It's crazy, it's changed so much. At the beginning, it was definitely more rock, like Led Zeppelin and British rock and American rock - like Nirvana - and a lot of pop, but now it's got more soul like Donny Hathaway, Tina Turner, and Aretha; it's just all over the place, pretty much. I have a lot of contemporary influences as well, but those are the influences I've had growing up in the past: the pop and the rock.

Is there an artist you're hooked on right now?

You know, it's funny, I listen to a lot of old '90s music - like a lot of old Timbaland and Missy Elliot stuff - a lot of old RnB I listen to just for the production value. I've been listening to that a lot lately, for some reason.

How would you describe your own sound?

It's definitely evolved since I found a producer to work with who has let me grow and hasn't put me on a leash and made my sound his sound. It's definitely evolved to more of a soul/pop, because before it was more soul with contemporary sprinkles, but now it's kind of switched to contemporary with soul sprinkles, because my voice is always going to be soulful. The producer for the song "Hot and Bothered", he said my voice reminded him of Tammy Burell or Marvin Gaye, he said my voice has this whole soul quality to it, so anything I do is going to be soulful, but I just love the electronic, synthy pop kind of music. It's just evolved to more contemporary with soul. 

What inspired your single, "Hot and Bothered"?

I had a crush on this guy that I was texting and I'm super shy and I just found this loop on GarageBand and it was just cool with this soul, motown basis, and I just played it over and over again and I wrote this song about him. It was pretty easy to write - they all came that easy - but that was extremely easy to write about my crush [laughs].

That track is off your forthcoming EP, what can you tell us about that EP?

I've been working so hard on this EP. My friend, Gary Clark, for example, he knows his sound and he knows what he's going for because he plays an instrument and he's like, 'I want this sound and this sound and this sound'; I don't have a sound yet, it's constantly evolving. So, I think you can expect more stuff like "Hot and Bothered", but it's kind of like a big stew of influences and genres. I have some electronic stuff, one kind of reggae-ish tune, and one soul/throwback song that's Aretha-like; it's just all over the place. I just want to throw something on the wall to see if it sticks and it's kind of all over the place now until I figure out the sound. I kind of have sonic ADHD, because I like this certain genre and then I like this certain genre; I kind of cut and paste. It's just going to be a sonic stew of genres.

Was that track you did with Gary Clark Jr any indication of the sound we can expect on the EP or was it just done outside of your album?

Yeah, that was like a fun, outside of my album song. I've known Gary for years and I've been trying to work with him forever but we just couldn't coordinate our schedules, and then, finally, Gary was working on his second album and he heard me singing the demos that he wrote for his song and he asked me to come and lay it down and I was like, 'oh my gosh, what a huge honor'; and that song was so sexy, I think that's probably my favorite song on the album. That was a huge honor and I love Gary so much. I want to collab with him in the future, but it just didn't work out for my EP because he's working on his new album and touring and whatnot, so we just couldn't connect, but hopefully one day... [Laughs]

What do you want listeners to take away from your music?

I just want to move people with my voice and my words and my tone. I make use of tone and I just want someone to get chills when they hear my voice, because it's taken me a lot of hard work to understand tone and phrasing and just the little nuances of people's voices. I've been studying that for so long and I just want people to be touched by my tone and my phrasing and for it to be refreshing. I want to refresh people. Refreshing, hands down [laughs]. 

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