Jackie Dee is back with “Six String Heart” – her third and most personable album to date. Juggling her time as a family therapist and a singer-songwriter, this new release sees Jackie fearless in tackling the tougher topics including domestic violence and mental illness. Produced by the award-winning Matt Fell, the album was released February 17th following an official single launch and album preview show at the 2017 Tamworth Country Music Festival.
When asked to describe her new album, Jackie tell us, “This collection of songs symbolise a monumentally challenging time for me and my family. Losing my brother John, 51, in March last year was devastating just four months after he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Cancer. He battled mental illness for 30 years which added to this tragedy and my mother was his primary carer for all of his life. My step-father was diagnosed with cancer at the same time but thankfully is now in remission. The track ‘Zeppelin’s Playing’ is about the last moments I spent together with my brother listening to his favourite Led Zeppelin album”.
The Helensburgh NSW based artist was also deeply affected by the story of a mother who was bludgeoned to death last year in front of her 17 year old son in a community very close to where she lives. “Her Free Will” was a protest song inspired by her story and Jackie plans to offer this song as a gift to any organisation who aims to raise awareness of preventing violence against women.
“Six String Heart” features many other reflective songs including ‘Little Ones’, which Jackie wrote soon after her daughter (now 21) moved out of home and of course the first single ‘Contemplating Life’ which was just been released to radio Jan 2017. This track reflects on many big issues affecting our planet and society and sends a message that we must nurture our relationships first and foremost.
‘Contemplating Life’ remained in a top 10 position on the AMRAP/AirIt Regional Chart – a huge achievement for Jackie as 15,000 new Australian tracks are showcased on AirIt, with dozens added every week. Past chart entries include Troy Cassar-Daley, Tania Kernaghan and Kasey Chambers.
The title track is really about the singer-songwriter and her writing process. Jackie confesses that ‘Shipwrecks’ is definitely one of her favourite tracks not least because Shane Nicholson accompanies her both vocally and acoustically. ‘Shipwrecks’ is a metaphor for the journey of many creative types, the creativity and inspiration often coming during those times when the artist is most ‘at sea’. It was also the last track written and came to Jackie in one neat little package, as if it was destined to be on the album. All 11 tracks were self-penned by DEE.
Described as sometimes a little ‘Country Belle’ and sometimes a little ‘Rock Chick’, the mum of two describes her style as ‘coastal country’ (living where the bush meets the sea) sung with a voice that has been likened to Faith Hill and Mollie McClymont. It was late 2007, whilst penning songs for her alt/country duo Dee-tour when Jackie decided to try her luck at a regional song competition. Judge Colin Buchanan awarded her first prize for her song ‘A Few Wrong Turns’, a song about making those big important mistakes in life that teach us the most.
Jackie released her debut EP “Tide” in 2010 and in 2011 the track that awarded Jackie first prize was also featured on ABC Music’s ‘Country 4 Mum’ compilation. With Matt Fell once again in the producer’s chair, 2013 saw the release of her second studio album. The aptly titled “Doors & Windows” gives us an intimate view of the sensitive relationship this artist has with lyrics and melody, heart and mind. Two tracks from this release made the APRA Top 30 finalist list (country genre) in the 2013 APRA Professional Development Awards and Jackie received nominations in the Music Oz Awards that same year.