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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Jayme Dawicki Celebrates Love

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Jayme Dawicki isn't the tortured type. The Milwaukee singer-songwriter giggles frequently and speaks in the cheery cadence you'd expect from a former Miss Wisconsin, and her emails usually contain at least one smiley-face emoticon. That chipper personality comes across on her latest album, the happily titled Love Love.

“The album is very upbeat,” Dawicki says. “I'd say all the songs in one way or another are about love. I didn't set out to make it a concept album, but when I really started looking at the songs and what it's about, I realized they're about relationships, mostly, and different versions of love: first love, last love, long love, loving life, having cool friends, love that should not be. I love writing about relationships; that's my favorite topic.”

Dawicki says she was inspired to make Love Love more upbeat than her last album, 2008's Shatter Queen, a more pensive collection of Brandi Carlile- and Sara Bareilles-styled piano-pop, after seeing the response to that album's jauntier tracks.

“People really responded to 'Paper Dolls' and 'Here I Go' from Shatter Queen, so I wanted to see if I could craft songs more in that direction, and I found out I could,” Dawicki says. “I still like writing the more dramatic songs, but it was fun to find out I could do these really upbeat ones, too. There's just something about how people respond to those songs at live shows. You play a song like 'Paper Dolls,' and people get so excited and energized.”

Love Love
marks Dawicki's second time recording with Dashboard Confessional and Duran Duran producer Daniel Mendez. This time, she says, she was ready for his down-to-business approach.

“The first time we recorded together we were still getting to know each other, and I didn't know what to expect,” Dawicki explains. “We recorded in Seattle the first time, so I flew out there and we had lunch to get to know each other and see if we wanted to work together, then we went right to the studio and started working, recording a whole verse and chorus of a song.

“That whole process of working with a professional producer and tearing the songs apart and reworking them with drums, guitar and bass was very new to me,” she continues. “This time I was better prepared, so it was probably a bit less scary working with a producer who is so hands-on. That's why I wanted to work with him, though. I wanted somebody who is going to push me and say, 'Hey, this is a great song, but this could be an excellent song if you worked on it harder.' I wanted somebody who was going to tell me the truth and who wasn't going to settle for anything less than the best the song could be.”

Jayme Dawicki releases
Love Love with a 3 p.m. afternoon show Sunday, May 1, at the Turner Hall Ballroom with opener Julie Moffitt.
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