MusicRowPics: Jo Dee Messina

Jo Dee Messina Artist Visit

Jo Dee Messina Artist Visit

Jo Dee Messina visited MusicRow‘s offices on Thursday afternoon (Sept. 26).

Messina, no longer signed with Curb Records, has taken an innovative approach to the making and recording of her forthcoming album. She put fans in the driver’s seat on the new project, allowing them to choose the first single (fans selected “Peace Sign,” a sly kiss-off to a bad relationship) and the title of the album, Me. Messina says the project should be completed by the end of October.

The singer-songwriter kicked off her visit with “Peace Sign,” backed by four musicians.

“Last year, I got off my label and I wanted to do something for the people,” explained Messina. “I started posting songs on YouTube, Twitter and other sites. I asked fans whether certain songs should be on the album.” She also began using Kickstarter, which provides tools to raise funds for creative projects via crowdfunding. Messina received $121,000 worth of investments toward the project in 30 days. Fans contributed at different levels, allowing them to receive various levels of rewards, including CDs, t-shirts, the chance to have Jo Dee perform a private concert for them, and more. Some fans who invested in the project came to Nashville to sing on one of the album’s songs. The entertainer has delved into every part of the album and Kickstarter process, from responding to fans’ investments to sending out 8x10s, t-shirts and other items.

The past few years have been non-stop work for Messina, who has learned to balance her roles as singer, songwriter and businesswoman with roles as daughter (caring for her mother who has been in the hospital), wife and mother to an 18-month-old son. “I felt pulled so thin. I’m somebody’s mother, daughter, teacher. When I look into the mirror I had to see Wonder Woman, but instead I see me,” said Messina. That realization led to the writing of the album’s introspective and emotional title track, “Me.”

After performing the ballad for MusicRow staff, Messina performed another highly-voted new fan favorite, “A Woman’s Rant,” an uptempo country romp laced with banjo. Later, she performed a series of her earlier radio hits, including “Heads Carolina, Tails California,” “A Lesson In Leavin'” and “Bring On The Rain.”

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About the Author

Jessica Nicholson serves as the Managing Editor for MusicRow magazine. Her previous music journalism experience includes work with Country Weekly magazine and Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) magazine. She holds a BBA degree in Music Business and Marketing from Belmont University. She welcomes your feedback at [email protected]

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