Volume 91, Issue 46

Wednesday, November 19, 1997



No apologies for being happy: Jann Arden cuts the crap on this tour

©Reisig & Taylor
UNBEKNOWN TO JANN, SHE'S ABOUT TO GET SMOKED BY ONCOMING TRAFFIC. After healing, Jann Arden won't apologize for her Happy performance tonight, with Ron Sexsmith, at Centennial Hall.

By Brad Lister
Gazette Staff

It was a few minutes before she had to run off to do a sound-check for the evening show, but singer/songwriter Jann Arden was in fine form – cracking jokes at a feverish pitch.

"No worries," she says.

She shouldn't actually have much to worry about. Since her double platinum album debut in 1993 Time for Mercy, Arden has met with tremendous critical and commercial success. She followed up with the sextuple-platinum album Living Under June, which brought her stardom with "Insensitive," a hit single in the U.S..

Now Arden is back out on the road touring again with her new album Happy? "I like the songs a lot," she says of the new album. "I'm just pleased with whole thing."

On touring, Arden says the best part is the sleeping. "It's trying to find time to do that," she says. "The shows are fun and they're usually different every night."

Arden appears to be taking things as they come. "I'm enjoying what I'm doing and that's all that I can conceptualize. I don't have any big designs on the future or who I am," she says. "Honestly I'm so grateful for what has happened."

It's simplicity that has become a trademark of Arden herself. Listening to the new album, one becomes quickly wrapped in the lyrics and can easily relate to them. Arden won't hazard a guess if this is what makes her music so appealing. "I can't imagine getting inside what people like, but I always respond to music from an emotional point of view."

Arden can't pinpoint exactly what inspires her songwriting. "It's not anything you can even verbalize," she says. She compares songwriting to that of writing a novel, saying one never quite knows where it will all lead.

Another trademark, Arden's wit, doesn't stay hidden for too long. When the conversation turns to just how she arrived at the title of the new album there is no big story to be had. Arden says the title is a word in the song "Holy Moses!" She says between her and her manager they just threw the title on the album and put a question mark on it. The best explanation she will offer is that the word itself conjures up a lot of different meaning for people.

"It's amazing to me where people run with this stuff. Maybe that's how stupid the entertainment business has gotten – that it's all supposed to have this double meaning and have this innuendo attached to it. I think a lot of people do this because they baffle themselves with bullshit when they don't know what they're doing."

The wit jumps in again at this point. "I'm gonna call my next record Sorry. And they're going to ask why I called it Sorry and I'm going to say I'm fuckin' sorry about naming my last one Happy?."

Whatever she calls her next album, her fans will be there to buy it.

To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazent@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright © The Gazette 1997