Jill Brown is a singer and songwriter living in Glasgow. She grew up surrounded by melodies, harmonies and all sorts of instruments. Coming from a family which lived and breathed music it was perhaps inevitable that one day she would pick up pen and paper and carve out a musical career. Writing for another artist led to writing for herself. She always dreamt of being a singer but it was only when she wrote her own story into her lyrics did she really discover her voice. A traumatic turn of events gave Jill something really powerful to share.
Jill is different. Although she cites a wide range of influences, her sound mixes genres. She calls it soul music “because it comes straight from my soul.” Deciding to play venues no one else would want to play, last year she embarked upon a series of gigs at Europe’s most notorious jail, Barlinnie Prison. Jill likes to involve people and so she had some prisoners play some covers with her, as well as performing their own songs. These performances culminated in Jill bringing in her full band, many remarking that the boldness and honesty of her catchy tracks made a lasting impression.
Jill has an eclectic musical taste, not surprising given the family background! Tom Waits, Neil Young, Gerry Rafferty and John Martyn are particular favourites, as are Maria Callas, George Michael, Seasick Steve, Imelda May and The Rolling Stones.
She is currently working on a music video.
Thanks to the Daily Record for a great review of the music!
About Jill’s gigs in Barlinnie Prison, Glasgow, for which she rehearses with prisoners who join her band:
“Jill has been working with musicians in Barlinnie on a sessional basis to improve their musical skills, develop their performing skills and enhance other factors that will benefit them on release and help them desist from criminal activity. These other factors include self esteem, self awareness, empathy and social interaction. This has been a very positive partnership so far and has been making a real difference.”
Derek McGill, Governor, HM Prison, Barlinnie
About Jill’s gig for recovering drug addicts and alcoholics at Kirkintilloch Recovery Life Cafe:
“Not only was the music fantastic and uplifting, but Jill shared some of her story with the folks there with humour and candour, which struck a number of chords. We are very grateful and would love Jill to perform again in 2014.”
Liz Sneddon, Alcohol & Drug Partnership Coordinator, East Dunbartonshire Council
About Jill’s gig for the homeless at Glasgow City Mission:
“Our guys really enjoyed the evening. Paying to see quality live music is one of a long list of things in life they are excluded from through lack of money, or social stigma. Many commented that they had enjoyed it and Jill’s voice in particular. It was something special and different from the norm for many. We’re not a natural gig venue or have perhaps the correct facilities for musicians; there’s also noise and comings and goings, food being eaten and so on. But none of that matters. What did is that Jill gave up her time and shared her talent with the people we work with – that’s something that doesn’t happen very often.”
Graham Steven, Marketing & Fundraising Manager, Glasgow City Mission
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