At AWAL, we love sharing our artists' stories so their paths — as individual and unique as the music they make — inspire others to pursue their own music-career goals.
Here in our "My Journey" series, our members share their stories — the challenges they’ve faced, how they’ve overcome them, the milestones they’ve achieved, and where they hope the future leads.
This week, we're speaking with UK electro-pop artist — July Jones.
How did you get started as an artist?
When I was 6, I joined a classical music school where I learned how to play the piano. I was there for about six years before my mum encouraged me to take singing lessons. In my early teens, I started posting videos on YouTube, one of which went viral and resulted in me being picked up by a record label in Germany.
All of a sudden, I was traveling back and forth between Germany and Slovenia, mostly writing for commercials. By the age of 18, the contract ended, and I moved to London to work, where I'm now developing my style. I'm focusing on the electronic-pop genre and taking my time to work on that. The dream is to write for other big name artists as well as myself.
Where are you now in your artistic journey?
I've now got a really strong team around me including three amazing managers who have extensive experience within the music industry, a three-piece band, PR officer, and a strong management team. I have been working with some of the most promising upcoming producers and have really honed my musical style into something that I love: a dark pop feel with elements of electronic music.
I am looking forward to performing live around London and the UK in 2018. This year, I had an amazing summer of gigs including London Pride, a headline slot at Cargo London, and performing for a huge fashion show in Slovenia.
I have collaborated with MK Exclusive (high-end fashion brand, with an exclusive Swarovski license) to coincide with the release of my latest release, "Bad Influence." We have made 24 unique backpack designs which are being sold across online stores and in Topshop's flagship UK store in Oxford Street in time for Christmas. I have been working closely with Hype clothing this summer, as well as a feature in Missguided and Hook LDN.
Tell us about some of the biggest challenges you've faced so far as an artist.
The hardest thing for me was signing to a record label at 14 and moving away from my home country. It was difficult to figure out who I was as an artist at that age. I wasn't defined musically, and I barely started writing, but that made me dig deeper into who I was and who I wanted to be.
Eventually, after years of changing my sound, I finally developed myself into an artist I am today. I'm growing really fast with the electro-pop sound and I'm really excited for what the future brings.
What has been the most rewarding part of your journey so far?
The most rewarding part is definitely playing live shows and seeing people's reactions to my music.
What are the next big milestones in your career?
My 2018 tour. I'm really looking forward to performing live, as that is where I get to really get the audience's feel for what I have written.
Also, I'm excited to continue writing in the studio as much as possible. My latest single, "Bad Influence" came out on November 10th, so I've been promoting that and encouraging people to show their bad side with #likeabadinfluence across socials while traveling around London and causing mischief myself.
We have more new music ready for the new year, so for me it's about getting as much music out there and performing it as much as possible.
Where do you ultimately want to end up as an artist?
My aim is to be able to reach the scale of a sold-out world tour and for my music to connect with fans all over the planet.
How has your experience with AWAL been so far?
Amazing! The process is so easy (or so my management tells me), and the support from the AWAL team is incredibly fast, and they have always been on-hand to assist every time we have had a question.
The app is so valuable to me and my team as an artist — it lets me see who is listening, where they're listening, and what they're listening to across all of the streaming platforms, which enables us to really make the most of future campaigns.
The best outlets for artists to learn from are from other artists! Sign up to the AWAL Weekly and see how AWAL artists like July Jones are conquering the grind and finding success! Also, be sure to check out July's own website for news on new releases, announcements, and more!