Interview – Simon Jela

I recently reviewed singer-songwriter and musician Simon Jela’s latest EP Safe Place and really enjoyed it – like most of the artists I feature here, I wanted to find out a little more about him. Read on below for more information and don’t forget to check out Safe Place if it sounds good!

By Jane Howkins

You recently released a new EP titled Safe Place. What can you tell us about the EP and where can it be purchased?

It’s my first EP with the very first songs that I’ve written and composed.

During a phase of ups and downs in my life a few years ago, these 5 songs grew into what they are now. The EP is about heartbreak, separation and grief but also hope, love and joy. There’s always something good waiting for you, even if you’re currently coping with some shit in your life. The focus track Safe Place can stand for a person, feeling or place that makes you feel safe and loved. Also, a message to support love in every form.

You can order the physical EP on my website, buy it on iTunes and amazon or stream it on every streaming platform.

Have you got any plans to release a full length album anytime soon?

I’ve written a lot of songs in the last few years and there’s definitely new music waiting for you. We are currently looking for producers, sponsors and studios to work with.

What is the writing and recording process like for you?

The writing part for me is very much like self-therapy. There are many things going on in life like falling in love, breaking hearts and getting heartbroken, coping with very difficult situations and feelings. If I break those feelings down into verses and choruses it definitely helps me understand myself better. Getting things out of my head is like cleaning up my mind and it can be a mess up there if I don’t do this.

Recording is always a magical thing to do because when you’re with a producer who understands your vision, that’s where it comes to life.

Do you plan to release any singles at any point in the near future?

We’re planning to release new music as soon as possible. If you don’t wanna miss it, just follow my socials. I’ll keep you updated there!

You’re from Germany. What is the music scene like in your part of the world at the moment?

Well, due to the pandemic I think it’s the same everywhere at the moment. In my opinion the most important thing is to keep everyone safe and to not risk the lives of others. I also think that supporting art and culture is important at the moment because once this pandemic is weathered we all want to go out again and maybe visit concerts and events.

What/who influences you most as an artist? What have you been listening to recently?

My father played us all his favorite music as kids and I’ve been in love with 70s and 80s music since my childhood. As I grew up into my teenage years I discovered artists like Ed Sheeran and One Direction (especially Harry Styles) who influenced me a lot and motivated me to make music myself. For the last few years I’d say The Weeknd is the artist I’m listening to the most – one of the biggest artists to ever exist in my opinion and a huge inspiration in many ways.

Has the pandemic hindered your work much?

So as we released my first single on January 1st, we knew what was going on in the world but we started a label and set our focus on the possibilities that streaming can give you. Anyways, it’s of course a challenge to get your stuff heard by many people because you can’t really be playing shows during a pandemic. Due to the current situation it may take another while until we’ll be performing again but I’m looking forward to next year and I’m sure I’ll be playing live in 2022 – stay tuned!

Do you have any tour dates lined up?

At the moment we’re figuring out the possibilities to get me on stage next year and if you’re interested in seeing me perform live, just follow my socials (Instagram, Facebook) and stay updated.

What can people expect from a Simon Jela gig and why do you think people come and see you perform?

You’ll be hearing my songs in a way you haven’t before (or on tape) and we will give our best to make you have a great time. It’s about you and us vibing, singing and dancing together and leaving all of our problems outside for a little while.

Any last words for the fans?

Thanks from the heart to everyone listening to my music and supporting me – this is just the beginning!