Jessie Dipper hasn’t had the easiest of journeys through life..
but something that does come easy is to write a damn catchy hook. We caught up with the recent singer-songwriter graduate to chat all things music ahead of the Open Mic UK Grand Finale in which she will feature!
Tell us a bit about yourself and why you wanted to work in the music industry?
“I’ve grown up in a few different places, in and out of Britain, at a very young age, people very close to me died, which impacted who am and my outlook on life and what it brings. Throughout this period of learning about the world and the people around me, music had always been something that fascinated me and as years went on, I became happily obsessed with it! It’s such a universally utilised vessel to communicate things that you wouldn’t be able to say any other way otherwise and so exciting to explore! Because of this, I write songs about real life stuff, about the joy that comes in the morning, and redemption, but also with an awareness that sometimes things just aren’t good… and that’s ok!
I think the reason why I wanted to work in the music industry is because of the concept of creating and being on stage, there is no other place I’d rather be and where I feel I was born to be. The excitement in the everyday, of not knowing what might happen, what inspiration awaits, what people I may meet and where I might end up going is something that working in music brings. I want to use this platform to be an influencer and to show that there’s so much to life; I believe music can help bring that realisation, assisting in the shifting of the atmosphere in such a crazy world.”
Tell us about what you’ve been up to since leaving ACM?
“Since leaving ACM, I moved to Hertfordshire, to be closer to London, and to touch base with my roots, having moved out of home at 16 to live in Birmingham. Here I have grown a local following, built a reputation as an emerging singer-songwriter both in Hertfordshire and London through lots of live performances and online promotion (through social media platforms and sites like Youtube where I post vlogs and songs). I’ve been gigging in places such as Lord’s Cricket Ground, Brick Lane and Shoreditch, Camden, Finsbury Park and Islington, getting to know those within the industry and taking every open mic opportunity I can in my local area (a place called ‘Ware’ in Hertfordshire). I am also developing the music and worship in a local church as the intern there, networking and building a community through the expanse of people within this scene as well.
I have also been recording and working with a few different companies, making time to write and collaborate. This is as well as (somehow) getting into the Grand Final of the ‘Open Mic UK’ competition, a “national singing competition for singers and solo artists in the UK, which attracts over 10,000 acts every year as it travels across the country in search for the UK’s best singers, singer/songwriters, rappers and vocalists.”. With the grand finale back in beautiful Birmingham at the end of January.”
Tell us about the Open Mic UK competition, and how it’s been going?
“The Open Mic UK competition popped up out of no where last year, shared to me by someone who had got in touch to recommend I apply. It wasn’t practical for me to do it at the time, so I thought I’d give it a shot this year. After going through the audition process, I found myself performing to a panel music industry judges and hundreds of people coming to watch their acts perform. Each stage requests that you perform a 3.30 minute song, so I am currently preparing for the grand final with a new and unheard song, of which I’m hoping to release on my next project – my first album (after 2 EPs written, recorded and released during my time at ACM).”
What are your aspirations for the future?
“I have lots of dreams! I’m currently working on the early stages of an album, and looking to arrange a national tour in the future to promote this and travel more once this has been launched, focussing on the Southern hemisphere after the UK… I’ve grown up with travel being in my blood, and there isn’t a place on earth I would not want to go to! I don’t know a lot of things, but I know for sure I don’t want to stay in one place. I’m doing as much as I can to make this become more of a reality, of becoming an influencer, of writing and performing songs that people’s hearts can beat to the same rhythm of (I know, that’s a very ‘singer-songwriter-ry’ way of saying things) and sharing the joy that comes in the morning, even when life really hits you hard. I never want to loose my roots, and the sensation that music brings to so many different people.”
How did your course help prepare you for life in the music industry?
“ACM helped me massively in learning what it is to be an artist / brand, the importance of networking, practicalities; such as the use of words and the theory behind written music, different strands within this industry that branches out to many areas of performance, composition and so much more. My course, specifically in singer-songwriting opened multiple doors for gigs, recording opportunities and crucial relationships that have helped me to grow and define my image and style as an artist, criticism from a professional perspective (thanks to my tutors..!) and a chance to be in a place with passionate people, consuming all manners of music, methods of sounds and technology. Having lived independently due to being away from my family, I’ve learnt so much about myself and my own sound in that space.
I don’t think I’m a finished product, but I did come out of ACM wiser and more aware in the knowledge that my aspirations could actually become a reality if I worked hard enough and committed myself in all that I do to the music and what it means.”
What motivated you to come and study at ACM?
“I stumbled across ACM on Google half way through my GCSE year and applied to take a tour of the college, and the rest is history. I think what motivated me was the longing to know more and see more of what was out in the Music Industry and to be apart of a community of people in the same boat as me, just wanting to create and perform like I do. I knew that music was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life and figured, if I was serious, I may as well throw myself head first into it and I did just that by going to ACM.”
What did you enjoy the most about studying at ACM?
“The best thing about being at ACM was being in a place of no restrictions. I would be free to express my madness, and the tutors would trust me enough to go along with it once they got to know me, and advise me when it was needed. The mandatory units, although seeming arduous from a distance, gave me new things to do and learn about and discover- thus putting a new spin on ideas and ways to do things and, most importantly, make them my own.
I think that’s the main thing; being original and the you that no one else can be. Learning about the awareness of those that listen to my music to be a crucial part of that process. Not thinking about how you can please everyone at once, at all, but considering the world and environment songs are placed in and bringing about the effect that they have on me, also on other people.”
If you’d like to study at ACM and follow in the footsteps of our Alumni like Jessie, please call our Admissions Team on 01483 500 841 or visit www.acm.ac.uk/open-days/ to book a place on an ACM Open Day today.