Interviews

Get to Know Up-and-Comer Jamie Hannah

Somewhere between classical maestro and pop icon is where Jamie Hannah lives. Endorsed by the likes of Kylie Minogue and Boy George, he’s pretty hard to ignore.

With an EP on the horizon and listeners racking up by the thousands, Soundigest got lucky enough to sit down with the rising star to discuss his new songs, his influences and so much more.

Hi Jamie, welcome to Soundigest! Let’s get down to business. Tell me about your newest single, “Secret Paradise.” What’s it about?

“Secret Paradise” is an ode to anyone who has felt they have lived in a parallel reality. This is a reality comforted by the safe haven of their own white lies. Once a deceiving love saga, now allowed to live freely.

You’ve also got an EP coming out soon — anything you can tell us about that?

Oh goodness, a man never likes to tell all his secrets. It’s my first EP, but I’ve been lucky enough to collaborate with producers and writers in London, Stockholm and L.A. Consequently, this has led me to having a body of work I’m incredibly proud of. The EP will have narratives focusing around the power of positive thinking, self-love and being able to manifest some magic.

You have an absolutely fascinating and captivating sort of musical style. So tell me, what are your main influences? I know you’re classically-trained, but I’m guessing you’re not only inspired by classical music.

I trained as a countertenor at the Royal College of Music in London; however, I have always liked and been influenced by an eclectic collection of music. I love Handel and Monteverdi, but music from all over the world, as well as pop music and jazz. Tracey Chapman, Clean Bandit, Elton John and Ariana Grande are also massive influences for me.

As a queer person myself, I know that it’s not always easy to exist in this world, especially in this current climate. Are you ever scared to raise your voice or to be out? Or do you just feel like you have to do it?

I was very fortunate to be brought up in a very liberal environment. There were many members of the LGBTQ+ community in my year whilst I was at school. Of course, when I was young I was terrified to come out, but now with perspective, I think of myself as very lucky to be a member of this community. It’s who I am. Everyone is unique in their own way. I am wholeheartedly an advocate for LGBTQ+ awareness throughout all spheres and professions, but I don’t feel obliged to do it. I want to do it.

Speaking of “Identity Politics,” how do you feel about being labeled as a “queer artist?” I know some artists are really adamant that it does not become their whole branding, but there are other artists who really embrace the label. Does it matter to you?

I’m proud to be an artist from the LGBTQ+ community. I am who I am, and I write what I write.

And on that note, do you feel like there’s a sort of responsibility with being visible and queer — I’ll bet that there are definitely going to be plenty of little kids who are going to end up looking up to you.

Anyone in the public eye has a responsibility to act responsibly for their fans. I do hope that there are queer kids that can confide in the narratives in my songs and find inspiration. I will always do what I can for a community that has been very supportive of me. We’re a team.

You’ve already had the opportunity to work with some legends like Kylie Minogue and Boy George, but are there any other artists that you’re dying to work with?

Oh my goodness, so many! If Ariana Grande or Beyoncé gave me a ring, I probably wouldn’t say no.

And finally, my favorite question to ask all artists: why should the world care about Jamie Hannah?

I’m just a countryside boy scrambling around in the “big smoke,” hustling away at my dream. Let’s all support one another, care for everyone and rise together.

Featured Image: Instagram (@justjamiehannah)

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