When you hear ‘Leadlight’ by Julia Jacklin, you’d be forgiven if you’re surprised that she’s Australian, born and bred in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, and currently living in Sydney’s inner city.
The video for ‘Leadlight’ features Jacklin as a shy, insecure girl in high school, practising her moves and working up the courage to talk to the object of her affections. The song owes as much to the beach party movies of Sandra Dee et al as it does to Lana Del Rey, guitar led and slow, it’s got a real sixties vibe that sucks you in and conjures up a more innocent time, when the biggest problem you had to solve was getting that guy to ask you to the school prom.
Jacklin was initially inspired to sing at the age of 10, when she learned how much Britney Spears had achieved by 12 years old. She convinced her mother to let her have singing lessons, but Classical were the only variety available in her area, and so she persevered until high school, when she joined a band “wearing surf clothing and doing a lot of high jumps” singing Avril Lavigne and Evanescence covers. From there she realised her calling, and had a further epiphany when travelling in South America, where she reconnected with high school friend, Liz Hughes. The pair returned to the Blue Mountains, where they bonded over Appalachian trio, Mountain Man, and the songs that Liz was writing.
“I would just sing,” says Jacklin. “But as I got my confidence I started playing guitar and writing songs. I wouldn’t be doing music now if it wasn’t for Liz or that band. I never knew it was something I could do.”
Julia started honing her craft: learning how to use her words by listening to Fiona Apple; to command a presence with her electric guitar, from Anna Calvi; and that interpretation always wins the battle over technique, from Angel Olsen.
These skills have led to her album, ‘Don’t Let The Kids Win’. Recorded in New Zealand’s Sitting Room Studios with Ben Edwards, best known for his work with Marlon Williams, Aldous Harding, and Nadia Reid, Julia Jacklin’s album, comes somewhere between alt-country and indie-folk, and is brought to life by Julia’s mesmerising voice and clever way with lyrics.
‘Leadlight’ is the second single from ‘Don’t Let The Kids Win’, which will be released on October 7, and is now available to preorder from Julia’s website. Julia is preparing for her world tour, which will take in Canada, USA, Europe (including the UK and Ireland) and ending in New Zealand and Australia.
Julia Jacklin can be found online on Twitter, and Facebook.