From A-list TV spots to Eminem’s recent track “Bad Guy”, and more recently a project with Wu Tang Clan’s Raekwon, Sarah Jaffe is running the gamut fast and hard. There are musicians known for their lyrics, vocal arrangements and those for that gift of solidarity at the intersection of the art of melody and technology. If there were one artist who could capture it all in a musical era that so often loses something in between, Sarah Jaffe owns it.
Overlapping urban, folk, rock and with a kind of Cat Power slash Radiohead stream of consciousness, Jaffe nails it all in her sophomore album The Body Wins (Kirtland Records), and more precisely with her new release, “Defense” and “Fool’s Gold” from her latest focus: The Dividends – a project between Sarah and S1 – aka renowned grammy artist Symbolyc 1 (Jay-Z, Beyonce, Eryka Badu, Kanye West). Vocalist, writer, and sound savant, Jaffe is everything emotional, pulsating and straight forward delivering seamless harmony with hypnotic energy that commands your ear and your presence.
TL caught up with the Texas native for her live show in Los Angeles at Hotel Cafe, where the siren maximized her range in a venue known for its acoustics. Her performance was layered. Jaffe paces her voice and her band (Scott Danbomb – Drums; Robert Sanchez – Keys). Piercing through every sound and delivering tailored range. And in between provocative tracks, real life stories and arming vocal dips – is her humor and cynicism. She’s dedicated, humble, engaged, and at work from every word to beat leaving her without a doubt as one of the strongest names to know moving into a new year of profound musical talent. We were able to snag a few responses from the lady in high demand, and we look forward to getting more on her in the coming months as she prepares to release new tracks.
TL: Congratulations on your work with Eminem’s album, and great year of placements through some big cable network entertainment! Can you speak to your experience working on “Bad Guys” ?
SJ: Thanks! It all came about when producer S1 contacted me about writing some hooks for some tracks he was working on. The first track he sent me I wrote the hook “Bad Guy”. Working with S1 for about a year now and it’s been so much fun. Because we worked so well together we decided to start our own project The Dividends..which basically we are going by the same method. He will send me a track, Ill write for it and then we will get into the studio and record it. Simple as that. (I) Think its been liberating for both of us because we don’t think too much. We are just making things we like.
TL: Since your musical journey surfaced around 2008, have you found that your sound, messaging, and general musical direction has changed/evolved?
SJ: Of course it has! Natural for things to change. It would be boring if I continued making the same record…especially for me.
TL: You’re from Texas, how do you feel about your home town now that you’ve been out on the road and tearing it up in the studios?
SJ: I love coming home to my family. Its rewarding no matter where I have been or what I’ve been doing. It’s warm, its got everyone I love, all the good food, the comfiest bed…always feels the best to be home.