Whatever you are doing right now, relax and enjoy the beautiful sound of Singer/Songwriter Jennie Sawdon. Not only is Jennie crazy busy travelling the country to add that special something to the most elegant of weddings and star-studded events but she is also mum to Freddie aged 4 and all round superwoman!
When did you first realise you had a voice?
When I was about 11 and the music/drama teacher gathered everyone together to tell us who was going to play the different parts in our school play. They said that I was going to play the part of the Centipede (ha ha) in James and the Giant Peach because I had a lovely voice. That was the first I thought about it really.
Was it difficult making a career out of your musical passion?
It certainly wasn’t easy. There are so many different strands to being a performer and everybody takes a different path. Whilst I was training to be an opera singer I was singing in a student bar on a Friday for free beer and £10. It was a long road to where I am now, managing to earn a living from performing.
The golden question: Do you think anyone can be trained to sing or is it a gift!?
Everyone can certainly improve on what they have – it’s a bit like training in a gym – you might never be a top class athlete but there’s nothing stopping you from keeping fit. However, there are people who simply can’t hear a melody or pitch a note and for them vocal tuition is going to be hard and costly!
Do you watch the X factor, what do you think of that and other singing competitions?
You don’t want to hear what I think about those (lol) and they aren’t singing competitions, they are popularity contests for the judges.
Which singer do you admire the most?
That is so hard as there are so many wonderful and unique voices around. I admire different singers for their writing and their performance as well as the vocal gift. If I’m allowed I would choose Tori Amos for her songwriting, Kate Bush for her performance and it has to be Beyonce for the sheer might of that woman’s vocal talent.
What’s the stand-out best gig you’ve ever done?
Best gig I ever played was during a jazz festival in the centre of Manchester. I was in a bar playing a grand piano and everyone was standing around it and shouting out requests. They kept buying me champagne and joining in and we all had an amazing night!
Do you have any advice on how to juggle the work/life balance issues we all face?
Don’t work too much! Ha ha!! No seriously – I am a perfectionist and can really beat myself up and waste time worrying about things that really don’t matter. I think it’s important to do enough to give yourself a sense of self-worth but also really important to remember to take the time out as well.
Just for fun….If you could only sing one song for the next year what would it be?
Runaway by the Corrs – I love that song and I never get tired of it!
Finally, what’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Neither a borrower or a lender be. Oh and don’t eat yellow snow. (lol)
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