“Bounce” is a new eleven-song album by Suzanne Jamieson, a musical artist and yoga therapist which she created in collaboration with The Pop Ups, a triple-Grammy-nominated children’s band.
The songs on “Bounce” are all positive and kid-friendly and rooted firmly in the pop genre. The songs blend Suzanne’s trademark light and playful tone with heavy 80’s influences to create tracks that are fun and easy to dance to.
Suzanne recently discussed this album via an exclusive interview.
Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you initially get interested in music and how did you break into the industry?
Suzanne Jamieson (SJ): I’ve always been interested in music and performing. I got ’the bug’ when I performed as Glinda in our 1st grade production of ‘Wizard of Oz!’ I remember we glued cotton balls onto a milk crate for my cloud perch! I went to school for Musical Theatre at Syracuse University, and acted in theatre/tv/film for many years in New York and Los Angeles. I released my first album, “A Sun Up Sky,” which is a more adult album of showtimes and old standards, in 2009, and then when I had children, I wanted to make music for them and subsequently released “Shine: Lullabies for Everyone” in 2014, and now, “Bounce,” in July.
MM: Do you typically write the song lyrics of melodies first?
SJ: Sometimes a melody with a lyric will pop into my head at once, and sometimes it’s just a lyric that will come to me. For Bounce, I came to the Pop Ups with songs (melody and lyric) that we ultimately ended up rewriting. We kept most of my lyrics, added some to add specificity, and completely redid the melodies. It was a really collaborative process, and it is so much better because of that. I learned a lot.
MM: How did you get involved with The Pop Ups and what drove you to collaborate?
SJ: When I had the songs written for this album, I started looking for producers. I knew I wanted this record to be really fun, current, and relevant to today’s music scene. I started listening to a lot of children’s music and I quickly realized that The Pop Ups were the ideal team. I introduced myself to them at a Children’s Music Luncheon and they were friendly and receptive, but I didn’t yet have a demo to deliver, so the conversation ended there. Then, at my son’s classmate’s birthday party at a park, I was talking to another mom who mentioned that her child enjoyed my lullaby album and asked me if I’d be making another. I responded that I was actually looking for someone to produce my next album, and she said, “Oh. Actually, my best friend from college is in a band called The Pop Ups.” Kismet! So, we took a selfie, sent it to him, and a month later I was in New York working with them on this album.
MM: What inspired the songs on “Bounce” and do you have any special favorites?
SJ: I have a background in yoga therapy, where, in my training, I studied yoga philosophy. I learned that the yoga sutras reflect a lot of the ideas and principles of positive psychology. I started reading a lot about growth mindset, optimism, happiness, etc., and was inspired to share these messages with my children in a fun way. Kids don’t like lectures and I don’t like being a lecturer. I knew there was a way to get these messages through to them in a way where they didn’t even realize they were learning these life skills. So, basically, this album is my attempt to be as cool as Katy Perry and maybe get my kids to listen to me! Ha! We have a nightly ritual at home where I ask my children two questions: “What was the best part of your day?” and “What are you grateful for?” So, the song “Grateful” has a special place in my heart as it comes with so many sweet memories for me.
MM: How have you been keeping people entertained during the coronavirus lockdown?
SJ: Well, I’ve been mostly focused on keeping my two little people entertained! We’ve been doing “Mom Camp” with weekly themes…Star Wars, Spa, Harry Potter, Etc. It’s a mash up of science projects, art, and a lot of baking! So, so many cookies. And we try to do a dance party to Bounce most days! I’ve also released a couple of YouTube animated music videos, and we have a few more coming out for parents to watch out for on my YouTube channel.
MM: You are also a yoga therapist so does that influence your creativity at all?
SJ: Absolutely. Yoga helps me connect to my internal source of wisdom, creativity, and purpose. A daily pranayama (breathing) and meditation practice helps me pay attention to those little ideas that mostly come through in whispers.
MM: What are your ultimate goals for the future and is there anything else that you would like to mention?
SJ: I feel best when I am creating, collaborating, and growing. I intend to continue to pursue creatively the ways in which music and wellness intersect. I intend to sing, write, and perform, and I intend to spend a lot of quality time with my kiddos. We’ll see what that looks like; I’m open! There is one more thing I’d like to mention… It was very important to me that adults like this album as much as their kids do. This album was made with adults in mind and I hope that parents and caregivers will find this album as uplifting and enjoyable as their little ones. 2020 has been tough, and we could all use a lift. I hope that this album helps families find some joy.
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