March’s Creative Saturday was a little bit crazy. A scheduling snafu meant that the event was pushed back by a week at the very last minute. Yet, the RRC community came through and showed up in full force for the rescheduled date. And it’s a good thing, because the amazing artist – Jazzo – featured at March’s Creative Saturday also came through! She so willingly rearranged her schedule, and weren’t we stoked, because her gifts are many and her talent is supreme! Jazzo is a singer, a poet, a captivating performer, and truly an amazing woman. We’re hoping she’ll be back to share more music with us soon, but for now, here’s a little bit of her untold story to tide us over until her next show (and make sure to scroll to the bottom to catch the links on where you can follow her as her creative career takes off!):
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Querida – I like starting with people’s names. A philosopher-poet acquaintance of mine once told me that everyone’s favorite word to hear is their name. I don’t know if that’s true, but the names we choose for ourselves are certainly important. Will you tell us about your name? How did you start going by “Jazzo”?
Jazzo – Jazzo is an old nickname I got in high school. People were freestyling in class when we had a sub one day. This is back when it was popular to do the Grindin’ beat on desks and lunch tables. I couldn’t freestyle back then (and barely can now!) [Querida – Sure you can!] but I was a clown, so I hopped in and said, “My name is J to the A to the double Z,” and then I hyped myself up and screamed “Ohhhhhhhh!” A smart-ass kid in class named Brian Norris was like “J to the A to the double Z-O? What’s that supposed to be? Jazzo?” And I just said yeah. Word spread, and I’ve been Jazzo ever since.
Querida – Haha. I love that you just went with it. And that you made it your own. Sounds then like you’ve been interested in performance and creativity since way back when. When did you start getting serious about your craft?
Jazzo – Hmmmm. Music and other art forms have always been a part of my life. Almost everyone in my family is creative in some way. I wouldn’t say I got serious about music in particular until late 2010. Before then, I was all about acting and dance and I made parody songs for fun. I took a hiatus from late 2011 to early 2014, but I’ve been on the ground running ever since.
Querida – Yeah, one of the other Collective members told me you were a dancer and actor! I didn’t realize that.
Jazzo – Yeah, I dance and act as well as write songs and record. A short film I stared in will be out this summer, called “Flowers”. I produce too…usually under an alias. I also have a t-shirt line called Freedom of Tees. I make journals and planners called “Ateliers”. I paint quirky pattern-like things. I make dreamcatchers. [Querida – Dang, woman! You do it all!] I consider myself a curator…You’ll see a bit of that this summer with the events I’m throwing. I also assist artists with artist development and getting started.
Querida – That’s amazing! I love what a Renaissance Woman you are. And that it’s not just about you… Inspiring others to tap into their own creativity is what the RRC is all about. What about tapping into your own creativity? What is your own creative process like?
Jazzo – The creative process definitely varies. Sometimes it hits me like an avalanche. I could be anywhere and suddenly I’m frantically looking for means to record or jot down ideas. Those are usually the winners. The God-given ideas.
I can intentionally put myself there, too…put myself in a creative mood. I have to nowadays. I always have deadlines to submit references to people or personal deadlines for projects. That is when dim colorful lighting comes in, maybe some wine, maybe some tree. I’m always inspired by observations, experience, and adversity. You’ll find that all of my songs are either my own experiences or an embellishment of the experiences of others. People watching and travelling always tends to spark some ideas. Usually it sparks ideas for shorts. Lately I’ve been delving into screenplay writing! [Querida – Say what? You really are an all-around artist!] We’ll see where that goes. Oh and of course I’m super inspired by falling in and out of love.
Querida – Ha. I really feel everything you said. I certainly find my creativity through experiences and observations and stories of the experiences of others. And falling in and out of love…yeah, I feeeeel that. That inspires all kinds of crazy emotion to be tapped in to! Going along with the idea of finding creativity through others…what other creative circles or groups are you a part of?
Jazzo – Honestly, I have trust issues due to my last management contract. Lol. So, I float. I’m an honorary member of a writer and producer group called Better Beats. I LOVE them. It’s too bad I’m jaded…that could really have worked out…
I’m also a member of the DC Grammy Chapter. And recently started working with a team of visual artists called Ikonic Visions. We will be throwing events under the brand “Can’t Teach Dope” this summer.
Querida – And where does the RRC come in to your story?
Jazzo – Ah! I was on a promotional tour for my EP, “Cygnus”. My last tour stop was at Busboys and Poets, and it kept getting postponed. I ended up doing that show ay after the tour was over. And it just so happens the Collective was performing there too! I was immediately drawn to the group. All their talent! And Mr. P was doing more for me than my manager at the time. [Querida – Yeah, he’s an amazing supporter!] Yeah, needless to say, I’m not in that contract anymore!
Querida – And it sounds like you’re all the better for it! It also sounds like you’ve got a million projects in the works. Tells us again: what’s coming up for you, and where can we keep following you?
Jazzo – Whew, yeah, it’s been a rush! I will be jobless on June 1st! I’ll celebrate that by dropping the first single from my upcoming album and it’s accompanying music video. My album “Matters of the Heart” probably won’t come out until the fall. It keeps…evolving [Querida – Ha! Nice word choice!] Lol. The single, “The Real” is one of my favorite songs and the video is going to be a work of art. Maceo Tendaji of Ikonic Visions is directing it. It will be bright and clean [Querida – Ooo, also great descriptors!] I’ll be dancing. It’s definitely going to be a different presentation for me. Most of my stuff has been static and dark. I’m excited. The album sounds different for me too. Bolder.
Hmm. Social media…Instagram is my platform of choice, for sure! Sometimes I do some live vocal looping [Querida – Which is hypnotic! I love it!] Thanks! I always promote my upcoming shows there. My website will hold exclusives though. I’ll drop music that isn’t on any other streaming platforms, and merch and gear. And of course, Youtube is full of goodies.
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There you have it, dreamers! Jazzo really is an amazing talent, and a sweet, hilarious, and fun person to hang out with, too! If you haven’t already, follow her on all her sites: Instagram, YouTube, SoundCloud, Facebook, and check out her website for her upcoming shows and to buy merch. Her clips and creativity will make you instant fans! And of course, join the RRC in person for our next Creative Saturday on May 19th at the CHACC!