Jenn Grant takes stage at Starlight
The Starlight packed a six-piece band onto its small stage Wednesday night, fronted by the unmistakable voice and whimsy of Jenn Grant. The dance floor was occupied by tables, chairs and candlelight, an anomaly for most indie pop bands. Grant’s animated stage presence made for a fun, intimate show.
The set list featured songs from Grant’s first two records, followed by songs from her new record Honeymoon Punch.
Honeymoon Punch is a small departure from her previous work, she said, in an interview before the show. “I was really wanting to try and change things up and try a different sound,” she continued. “I like to keep things pretty spontaneous.”
“[My music] used to be this whimsical, non-structured thing and I’m really feeling like I’m departing from that right now and I’m focusing in and writing music differently,” the songstress explained.
While the album does have some slower songs like the beautifully touching “Stars to Waves” and “Paradise Mountain,” the new record is more upbeat on the whole than her earlier full length records Echoes and Orchestra For The Moon. Songs with catchy rhythm and melodies like “Getcha Good” and “Oh My Heart” were adored by the audience.
On Wednesday, the “Getcha Good” even featured a two-piece brass section comprised of trumpet and saxophone.
Grant has collaborated beautifully with such Canadian musicians as the prolific Ron Sexsmith, underground hero Buck 65 and the beloved Jill Barber. Honeymoon Punch features some collaborations with friend and fellow musician Christian Ledwell of Milks and Rectangles, including the song “Parliament of Owls,” which he wrote specifically for her new record.
“I’ve always felt happy close to nature,” said Grant, in regards to the recording tactic of her new record. Honeymoon Punch follows the small but growing trend of so called “indie” musicians renting cottages and recording among friends. She shares this habit with singer-songwriter Jim Bryson and it pays off brilliantly.
She has been nominated for three East Coast Music Awards (ECMA) including fan’s choice entertainer of the year, fan’s choice video of the year and Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN) songwriter of the year with Buck 65.
The Wednesday performance landed around half way through her current tour. The remainder of her tour will take her to The Rivoli in Toronto, the Rockwood Music Hall in New York City, and the RBC theatre in Mississauga among other locations, and will end in Charlottetown New Brunswick at the East Coast Music Awards.