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Rosalie James: A Rising Star in the Indie Rock Scene

today21/04/2024 38

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Rosalie James sat in the dim light, with only the guitar head and neck visible, the body of the guitar hidden from view beside her.

Learn about her journey of self-discovery, her transition from social work to music, and her powerful and personal album.

Rosalie James: A Rising Star in the Indie Rock Scene

Rosalie James, a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter hailing from Cornwall, UK, is making waves in the indie rock music scene. With a passion for music that dates back to her childhood, Rosalie’s journey has been shaped by her love for iconic bands like The Beatles and The Bangles, as well as her fascination with the emotional depth of 80s synth-pop and new wave, and the introspective lyrics of 90s dreampop and indie artists.

A Journey of Self-Discovery

Rosalie’s path has not been without its challenges. Since the age of nine, she has grappled with sensory sensitivities, difficulty managing emotions, and social interaction. Over the years, she has sought treatment for severe depression, anxiety, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and substance use issues. However, it wasn’t until January 2023 that she received a diagnosis of autistic spectrum disorder, which has allowed her to embrace her authentic self for the first time.

From Social Work to Music

After obtaining two degrees and working for ten years as a social worker in social care and mental health, Rosalie made the decision in June 2023 to return to her creative roots. Driven by her desire to make a positive impact on the world, she now channels her passion for music into raising awareness and reducing stigma surrounding topics such as neurodiversity, domestic violence, addiction, and mental health.

Rosalie’s recent Kickstarter campaign, which featured a compelling video showcasing her talent, raised an impressive £5000 in just 28 days. She has also graced the stage at various festivals throughout the summer of 2023, supported renowned UK pianist Ben Waters at Mylor Sessions, and captivated audiences with her candid and direct interviews on Radio Cornwall.

A Prolific Songwriter

With a back catalogue of over 200 songs and counting, Rosalie’s dedication to her craft is evident. Her prolific songwriting and recording efforts provide her with a head-start for future albums and potential publishing and sync deals. Already, her music has been featured on popular UK primetime soap opera Hollyoaks and the U.S. drama series The Black Donnellys.

Rosalie’s music appeals to a wide range of listeners, drawing inspiration from classic songwriters like Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Carole King, Kate Bush, Fleetwood Mac, and Deacon Blue, as well as progressive and emotionally literate indie artists such as Conor Oberst, Elliot Smith, Sharon Van Etten, Angel Olsen, Bon Iver, Boygenius, and The National. Her brutally honest and thought-provoking lyrics, catchy melodies, dreamy soulful voice, and slightly chaotic stage presence make for a captivating musical experience.

A Musical Journey to the West Coast

Adding an interesting narrative twist to her music, a significant portion of Rosalie’s forthcoming album, «Full of Chemicals» was produced and recorded in Los Angeles. This connection to the West Coast of the U.S. holds personal significance for Rosalie, as her father had lived in California during the early 70s, working as a stage manager, roadie, and lighting engineer for iconic bands like Grateful Dead, Wings, Santana, and The Tubes. Growing up, she was exposed to stories of the West Coast’s musical influences, creating a fascinating circular narrative in her own musical journey.

During a recent trip to Los Angeles, Rosalie had the opportunity to finalise the lead vocals for her album at Balboa Recording Studio, working with producer Daniel Knowles, known for his work with Sharon Van Etten. The album also features contributions from talented musicians such as Jorge Balbi (Sharon Van Etten), Lukas Frank (Storefront Church), Steve Jackson (Leo Sayer, Elkie Brooks), Garett Lang (Henry Wolfe, Lisa Loeb), and Jason Abraham Roberts (Norah Jones, Ben Kweller).

A Powerful and Personal Album

The lead single from Rosalie‘s upcoming album, «Girl I Was», tells a compelling narrative of an important yet destructive relationship from the artist’s past. This raw and honest song chronicles the journey of reclaiming one’s power and the necessary self-growth to move forward. Another track, «Soft Target», speaks to the experiences of women who were not diagnosed as neurodivergent until adulthood, capturing the struggles of those labeled as «over-sensitive drama queens» and their encounters with individuals who were attracted to their vulnerability but had nothing to offer in return. Rosalie’s forthcoming album, «Full of Chemicals», is a lush blend of dreampop, indie rock, folk, and Americana.

This highly anticipated album serves as a cathartic and important listening experience, offering an autobiographical diary of Rosalie’s personal battles with neurodiversity, toxic relationships, addiction, and mental health. Through her music, Rosalie expresses the depths of terminal sadness and fleeting joy that can only be properly conveyed through this art form. Her unwavering commitment to making meaningful music shines through, and she is determined to continue sharing her powerful message with the world.

As Rosalie herself says, «There is so much I want to say, and the depths of terminal sadness and fleeting joy can only be properly expressed through music – any other form of communication is corrupted by confusion and doubt. Maybe feeling too much is actually feeling exactly the right amount when you’re trying to make something meaningful. Anyway, I can’t stop now».

Written by: Jungle Telegraph