Julia Jacklin: “I guess I’m working it all out as I go.”

Julia Jacklin is certainly the coolest musician I’ve ever met who cites Britney Spears as her initial inspiration.  Australian singer/songwriter swears that her first push towards singing came when...

Julia Jacklin is certainly the coolest musician I’ve ever met who cites Britney Spears as her initial inspiration.  Australian singer/songwriter swears that her first push towards singing came when she was 10 and saw a doc on Britney Spears while vacationing with family… In the time since, however, her tastes have matured more than a bit and have apparently come to include heavy doses of Mountain Man, Fiona Apple, and Anna Calvi.  Jacklin’s debut album, Don’t Let the Kids Win, is out October 7th on Polyvinyl.  The album has the songstress pondering the first half of her twenties and the notion of being forced into adulthood, but ultimately being okay with that.  It’s both quirkily charming and profoundly wise, reminiscent of the kind of alt country balladry that came out of so many of the ‘90s best alternative singer/songwriters.  Jacklin has live dates booked through next February, including several major festivals, in addition to dates with Whitney and Gabriella Cohen.  At the moment Julia Jacklin is on the road with Marlon Williams and she will be playing our very own Boot & Saddle tonight, September 27th.  Last week I got a brief chance to chat with and get to know Julia Jacklin.

Izzy Cihak: Not to start with a huge question, but what have been some of the highlights of your musical career so far?

Julia Jacklin: I’ve had a pretty great month. It’s the first real touring I’ve done overseas. We played our first headline show in London a couple of weeks ago. That was really cool, selling out a show on the other side of the world. People singing along, just a really validating night.

Izzy: Is there anything you think is especially important for fans and potential fans to know about your process of writing and recording, or just your aim as an artist?

Julia: This is my first record, my first real experience touring, and I’m learning a lot every day. So I guess I’m working it all out as I go.

Izzy: Don’t Let The Kids Win is out soon.  What would you consider to be the album’s most significant influences, both musical and otherwise? What can people expect of your first full-length?

Julia: I listened to a lot of Leonard Cohen and Gillian Welch, mixed with Angel Olsen and Father John Misty. I wanted the lyrics to punch through the production. It’s just a musical snap shot of my early 20s lived out in Sydney, Australia interrupted occasionally by passion-fueled trips overseas.

Izzy: Is there a song on the album that you’re most proud of, or that you think might best represent your current state of mind as a musician, or is that like asking you to pick a favorite child?

Julia: I’d say the title track because it was the last track I wrote for it and ended up kind of representing what the whole album is about.

Izzy: You have a ton of touring coming up through the beginning of next year and you’re playing a lot of really cool bills with a lot of really great artists.  Are there any gigs you’re especially excited to play, or just cities you’re especially excited to visit?

Julia: I’m excited to play Huichica Festival in Pine Plains, NY alongside Bill Callahan, Vetiver, and Daniel Romano… Also we’re touring with Whitney through UK/Europe, which is going to be pretty great. Great band and pretty big venues.

Izzy: Finally, what can we expect when you play here at Boot & Saddle, a super cozy, super cool 150-capacity room?

Julia: I’m playing in a different format to usual on this US run. A guitar power duo. My drummer, Tom Stephens, has kindly stepped up to the front and taken on second guitar and backing vocals. A very talented man. So expect that, and some banter, I’ll try and throw in some local Philly references, I’ll do a bit of research.

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During the day Izzy Cihak teaches transgression, subversion, and revolution at Temple University. At night he haunts Philthy's best venues to cover worthwhile acts for Philthy Mag. Morrissey is everything to him and, in their own heads, all of his friends see themselves as Zooey Deschanel.