SiriusXM’s Track by Track with Jessica Mitchell
Jessica Mitchell is a Canadian singer-songwriter who just released her debut LP, Heart of Glass. I met her during one of her first radio stops in London, Ontario when she came through our cluster of stations excited to be considered for the playlist in her hometown. Within weeks, I had seen the infamous video of Jessica hearing her song on the radio for the first time.
I loved how real she was, both on and off the stage.
This album came together in both Nashville and Toronto with producers Blake Bollinger, Ben Stennis & Karen Kosowski, featuring collaborations with Deric Ruttan (Eric Church, Dierks Bentley) and Victoria Banks (Sara Evans, Johnny Reid). Since I met her, Jessica has somehow become an even better performer, finding strength in her vulnerability. Touring with Johnny Reid doesn’t hurt, either. This LP weaves in and out of heartbreak, with a hint of hope behind every moment of doubt. While I believe Jessica’s heart was broken in a million pieces as these songs came together, as she says, “I’m pretty good at putting it back together.” She may not be the only person that healed between tracks one and eleven – this album is cathartic for both the singer and the listener. I’m terrified knowing that she’s in a happy place now, what the heck is the next LP going to sound like?
It was an absolute pleasure having Jessica in studio to walk me through Heart of Glass, piece-by-piece and song-by-song. Join us for Track by Track with Jessica Mitchell on SiriusXM CBC Country for the songs and stories behind her debut album.
Thursday, May 31st at 8 pm ET
Friday, June 1st at 9 am ET
Saturday, June 2nd at 12 pm ET
Sunday, June 3rd at 6 pm ET
Tuesday, June 5th at 10 am ET
Thursday, June 7th at 5 pm ET
Friday, June 8th at 7 pm ET
Saturday, June 9th at 8 am ET
Sunday, June 10th at 8 pm ET
Monday, June 11th at 11 am ET
Tuesday, June 12th at 6 pm ET
Wednesday, June 13th at 12 pm ET
Thursday, June 14th at 5 pm ET
Friday, June 15th at 9 pm ET
Saturday, June 16th at 2 pm ET
Monday, June 18th at 10 am ET
Tuesday, June 19th at 3 pm ET
1. Workin’ on Whiskey
This was the first song recorded for the album, inspired by someone she believed was the love of her life at the time.
“’Workin’ on Whiskey’ came from a place of trying to reconnect with someone and it going horribly wrong…but knowing you kinda always have that love for that person no matter what. What that song did for me and my career is something I’ll never be able to shake.”
‘Firechaser’ was written in one afternoon before Jessica had to catch a flight home, but the record didn’t feel like it was quite done yet.
“That song is actually not very nice…one of the meaner songs I’ve written…or very direct. Addressing a person that thinks they’re better than everyone…or better than me. It spells out very clearly that I have my flaws too.”
3. Heart of Glass
Jessica says this song was one of the tougher songs to write because there was so much material and she just wanted the song to be perfect.
“I’m so glad we fought through it and made it work because it’s one of my favourite songs that I’ve ever written. I think it encapsulates the spirit of what the record means…constant heartbreak and the same thing happening to you over, and over, and over again.”
4. Don’t Love Me
This is one of the older songs that appear on this record. Jessica says this song sort of says… “Don’t come back in my life, do me a favour and stay away because I’m not strong enough to say no to you…that kinda thing.”
5. One of These Things
This song is inspired by a younger Jessica who was bullied and had a tough time growing up, mentally & emotionally. If there’s any message that she wants to leave the listener with, it is that you’re not alone.
“It’s a love letter to life and the stages of life, each verse kind of represents a part.”
6. Tear It Down
This song is empowering in knowing it’s okay to start over, and tear down the walls and rebuild. This may be her favourite song to play live these days.
7. Maybe It’s Me
Jessica says this song is definitely inspired by her ex – and she did give him a heads up that this song was about him. The song is about, “being in a relationship with someone you shouldn’t be, and justifying things you shouldn’t need to justify, and blaming yourself for things you shouldn’t blame yourself for.”
“I feel like Taylor Swift sometimes…” she said laughing. “It’s not like I’m trying to hurt anyone, but I don’t know how to write about anything other than my life.
8. Somebody Gonna Get Hurt
Jessica says this is the most ‘country’ song that she’s ever written with an old-school storytelling vibe. “A warning to future lovers…I’m used to hurting and being hurt…or I was. It’s looking inside, it’s going inwards and pulling parts of yourself and laying them on the table.”
‘Bulletproof’ is probably the most honest song Jessica’s written. “Being able to say, to someone you love, I love you and I will always be here for you, BUT, it would be nice if you’d return the favour when I need you. Even if it seems like I’m strong, I’m not.”
10. That Record Saved My Life
Jessica says this song isn’t necessarily about a specific record, but more about the power of the language of music. “I might not be here without music. Music has always been there for me…and I hope this song helps someone…that’s why I make music.”
11. Rain for the River
Jessica says this song had the best crowd reaction with audiences across the country while she was on the road with Johnny Reid and on the studio version, you’ll hear a local Nashville choir! The song came together on a writing trip in Los Angeles after a horrifying relationship situation. “This song is everything you wanted to say someone in the present – and there was no better relief than finishing that song. I thought, I can move on now, I’ve said everything I wanted to say.