I have two passions in life: music and travel. Lars has always said the career I am searching for involves a long holiday; maybe he’s right after all! The last nine years of my life in London have been a comfort blanket to write and perform music. I always held down a full time job at the same time which enabled a lifestyle of fun nights out as well as a few good trips in between.
About Jenny: Music & Travelling
At 21 years old I was a fresh faced singer songwriter playing keys and acoustic guitar to my dedicated friends in the many bars and clubs across London. Whilst working as a beauty consultant in Harrods in 2007, I took a month off and travelled around Thailand with my friend Carly (a very talented makeup artist). With a backpack and guitar slung over my shoulders, I felt an instant sense of freedom. I played my guitar as we island hopped around Thailand and I even wrangled my way into playing a festival on the beach.
Lars and I started dating in February 2008. Not long after that we joined a band called IntroducingLive with a group of Lars’ friends from work at Focusrite. The band was started by our friend Matt Derbyshire, also a great guitarist / keyboard player / producer. Lars was the sound engineer and I was one of the vocalists. The nine piece band performed DJ Shadow’s Entroducing album completely live and later started performing Mr. Scruff tunes using the same format.
We toured the UK playing sell out gigs at the Jazz Cafe and KOKO. We also played gigs and festivals in France, Croatia and Ireland up until last summer. Every gig felt like going on holiday with a group of great friends. These were good times!
Another Travel Binge
My second experience of travelling was a solo mission in 2009 after I was made redundant whilst working as a PA for Stolichnaya Vodka. Not everyone inherits a designer sofa as well a redundancy cheque, but I guess I have the occasional burst of luck! I hopped on a plane on the first day of my unemployment and travelled from Bali to Jakarta over the space of a month.
In 2011, Lars and I went to New Zealand for the wedding of Andrea and Dave (check out their links; they are very talented artists). I then skipped over to Australia for Carly’s wedding in the same trip. With another month away from my native soil, the idea of spending extended time abroad was becoming even more appealing.
Whilst my urge to travel was growing, Lars motivation in his career was waning. We both needed a break from the rat race. It was time to make a change!
Bell Pepper Jam and Leaving London
I think my only regret leaving London at this point in time is having to put on hold our lovely five-piece acoustic band, Bell Pepper Jam. The band consists of Lars on cajon, percussion and backing vocals, Ben on acoustic guitar, Abi on violin and backing vocals and Dennis on bass guitar and me as the lead singer.
It all started in 2010; we started to gel as a family. Every week we would make dinner and play music at the house, rehearsing in the basement studio. Together we rearranged a few of my old songs and eventually wrote several new ones. We played a number of gigs around London and also recorded a few times at Smokehouse Studios courtesy of Dennis who later mixed and mastered the tracks you hear on our SoundCloud page.
Travelling + Bikes
This was the dangling carrot that hooked Lars into the plan. I have been cycling casually for about four years, commuting to and from work (my most recent job was a CRM role within the gambling industry). In the warmer months Lars would take me out for longer rides but no more than 30 to 50 miles at a time. Ah ha! This was my way to get Lars to travel! I just had to tell him that we would travel every where on bicycles! I just hope I can hold up my end of the bargain! My only reservation is my left knee which can occasionally cause me problems (I have a strict stretching and strengthening routine that I sometimes forget to follow).
In order to continue playing music on the road, I am planning to buy a ukulele to start writing again. I am hoping to record some ‘location performances’ plus meet and play with some local musicians along the way.