“At last, I can say I did it,” said up-and-coming country musician Jessica Cannon, a native of Covington.

Finally Cannon, who goes by J.C., is pleased to announce that her album, I’m Just Me, will be released on Tuesday, Oct. 19.


J.C. sings and writes all five tracks on the EP.

While the music itself is primarily country blended with a soulful twist, the styles vary and delve into the musical styles of rock and pop.

“Each song is about something different,” said J.C. “But they’re all about real-life experiences that everyone can relate to.”

At the young age of 12, J.C. fell in love with singing and realized that she wanted to pursue the calling. By the time she was 16, her brother had introduced her to country music.

From then on, she was immediately drawn to its form and content not only because of its prominence as a music form but also due to its intimacy and connection formed with her. Additionally, the fact that African-American women were absent from the country music scene intrigued the musician rather than cause her to shy away.

“I loved how I could relate to a lot of the themes in country songs,” said J.C. “I think and hope that the same can be said of my songs.”

Six years ago, as she developed her singing over the next few years, she set her sights on recording newly-written material in 2004 upon finishing her undergraduate degree. After moving to Nashville, she entered the recording studio but the atmosphere wasn’t quite right. As a result, it was back to school she went to attain two masters degrees.

But she wasn’t done with music in the slightest.

“I still had these songsin me and I had to get them out,” said J.C.

Back in the studio, she began to lay her songs down on her own terms.

Recording with a live band really brought a new energy to her songs and to her overall drive.

The result is explosive.

J.C. weaves tiers of sweet-sounding, vocal melodies in songs like “Never Be Your Star” with soulfully personal and emotional statements like the vocals in “Me Time Blues.” Her efforts yield a strong, personal statement of lyrical and musical talent and hard work which are scarce from today’s music scene.

“When I was put the CD into my stereo for the first time, I just started crying,” said J.C., when asked what her favorite part of the whole experience was. “My second favorite moment was showing it to my friends and family back home. For aspiring musicians, I advise them to be prepared for rejection, but also to be determined to stick with it.”

The album can be purchased through J.C.’s website, www.jccountryandsoul. com, or through digstation.com and cdbaby. com.

Echo Day
Author: Echo Day

Echo Day is an award-winning journalist, photographer and designer. She is currently The Leader's managing editor.