Jewel

Jewel explains why Sonyae's tracks stick with you and what she thinks the songstress should do next.

on Aug 5, 2011

Parting is such sweet sorrow!

I hope you enjoyed our finale episode. It was so fun for me to watch this one. Back when we were taping, I was so nervous for all the contestants it was hard to enjoy it. But sitting in the comfort of my living room, it was nice to see everyone perform. I was really struck with how far everyone had come. It took a while for them to stop thinking like artists or singer-songwriters and to begin sounding commercial.

I loved everyone's songs. Jes really pulled it out. She improved so much over the show -- her structure and lyrics came a long way! And Scotty had his best night I thought, making a song that was the most sound conceptually to date. It was a beautiful sentiment and so touching to see his dad and his boyfriend sitting together! What a great thing to be able to sing that song, and his truth, to them both.

I really thought Sonyae deserved the win. There are a lot of writers who can write catchy melodies or chords, but it is rarer to find a strong concept writer. Concept makes a song stand out on the radio. It makes songs like "Firework" by Katy Perry or "The House That Built Me" written for Miranda Lambert stand out amongst all the heavy traffic of disposable songs on the radio. They are the ones that tend to climb the charts and stay there, and in the memory of a generation, when it really is done well. Think of "You're So Vain," or "Yesterday," or "Viva Las Vegas" or "Free Fallin'" --- all of them are so different, but so complete in a concept that they stick with you for generations.

I hope Sonyae takes the time to learn an instrument. It must be so frustrating to hear the music in your head but rely on others to make it come out. She will always be very valuable in a co-write, but would be a monster if she played for herself and could get the music just the way she likes.