Interview by Ron Hamilton
Indie Jazz Artist Halie Loren has been around for years, charting her own course as an unsigned musician writing and recording beautiful melodies with smooth, classical rhythms- characterizing her unique style and passion for life, soul and song. In her exclusive interview with VERGE magazine contributor Ron Hamilton, Loren discusses the joy of expressing her creativity through music, her influences, her inspiration, and her album, “Butterfly Blue.”
"The songwriter part of my identity is an important part. I’ve been a songwriter for as long as I’ve been a professional musician- and I’ve been writing songs now, since I was 13 years old."
Ron: Tell us about your album “Butterfly Blue.” It debuted Number 1 on the Japan Jazz Album Chart. Your third album currently ranked as a 9th best seller Jazz CD just behind the likes of Diana Krall and Lady Gaga, that’s impressive!
Halie: Thanks, it’s surreal, I’ll have to say. In Japan, it’s been totally another world for me as a musician. It’s really changed my life quite a bit. It certainly launched my sort of International Artist Career into new heights, and I’m really, grateful for it. It just kind of sprung up. It felt like kind of out of nowhere in a way - back in 2009, and it’s just been an amazing journey ever since. And this most recent album, Butterfly Blue’s success on the charts has been sort of the latest episode of wow! Pinch me, I must be dreaming! (laughs) So, it’s really, great.
Okay, let’s back track to the beginning. How did it all start for you? What influenced you to get into music?
I loved singing as a child, for as long as I can actually have any memory. I just always thought of music as second nature. There are apparently recordings of me singing when I was 3-4 years old around the house. 4 years old was I guess when my family said they started to realize that I had a particular affinity for singing. I just- it’s always been my soul…
When I was 10 years old, I attended a fine arts camp in Alaska where I grew up and that was my first exposure to performing jazz vocals, and it changed my life. I got to perform on a stage with a jazz trio. And I was terrified, but I thought, 'this was an amazing experience, and I really want to do this some more.' And so, I performed from age 10 onward. By the time I was 14, I was living in Oregon. I was able to actually start doing professional gigs at that point and I never looked back.
To learn more about the latest releases from Halie Loren, visit: halieloren.com. Ron Hamilton is the owner and founder of WRJR Real Jamz Real Jazz Radio Network, and contributor for VERGE Lifestyle & Urban Culture magazine.
Photograph by Bob Williams
|Read the full interview and more in the the Passion, Purpose and Joy Issue of VERGE magazine. Click here to buy the issue now, and become inspired!