I’ve been really well! It’s been an exciting beginning to the year, I’ve just had a photoshoot for the EP and recording is well underway!
Can you talk to us more about your upcoming single “Barely Alive”?
Of course! I wrote the song with Matias Mora and Mia Minichiello both extremely talented people. It was our first collaboration together and I enjoyed the process so much that Mia is also working on my EP.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
You know what I find most interesting about the writing process is that the song that ends up being written is not always the one you intended.I had just ended a relationship that meant a lot to me and I was not myself at all—but I was determined to write a song that was more “upbeat” and happy , hahaha but then I ended up with “Barely Alive”. And I couldn’t be happier with the track, it’s honest and it was truthful to where I was in that moment.
Any plans to release a video for the single?
That’s a good question! We’ll just have to wait and find out.
How was the recording and writing process?
It was fantastic. Whenever I sit down to collaborate with people I like to make it very clear that it doesn’t matter who’s idea it is, we’re here for the common goal of making great music. I think setting that up from the jump really allows for a collaborative environment where it’s fun, open, honest and inspiring.
How has your upbringing influenced you as an artist?
Growing up in foster care has shaped my entire life, especially my artistry. It’s given me a level of confidence that is rooted in knowledge of self, and a humble but hard-working attitude. The foster care system is tough and hard. But I think the flip-side of that is that I’ve learned the importance of empathy and that loving others is the single, most important duty we have to each other. My hope is that my music inspires love, self-confidence and strength in others. I try to be the role-model that I never had as a foster kid.
Does the new single mean we can expect new material (Album/EP) – how’s that coming along?
Oh most definitely yes! Be on the lookout for another single release very soon.
If so, what themes are you exploring throughout this record?
I’m drawing a lot of inspiration from poets particularly Maya Angelou (my favorite) and Max Ehrmann’s “Diserderata” . I’m really diving into themes of self-confidence, strength and love.
Any plans to hit the road?
We’ll just have to wait see.
What else is happening next in J. VEN’s world?
I’ll be graduating from USC this May which I am very very excited about. I will become the first generation in my family to hold a 4-year degree from a private institution!