October 21, 2016

Jessie Abbey: From California to Florida

Jessie Abbey

Two weeks ago most of us who live on the eastern shores of Florida braced in anticipation of a very strong storm that wreaked havoc throughout the Caribbean Islands. Florida was sure to feel the effects of the very large storm, therefore we all prepared the best we could. After the storm passed I contacted this weeks’ featured artist Jessie Abbey to see if all was okay. She assured me that she did not incur any major damage and everything was fine. Moreover, I am happy to feature a musician from the Daytona, Florida area for the second consecutive month. I’m sure all of you reading Florida Music Letter will enjoy the music of Jessie Abbey and find her story very compelling.

Jessie Abbey is the keyboard player, lead singer and co-founding member of indie pop outfit, Musical Charis. Since 2008, they have released 7 albums and toured nationally before a recent move from California to Florida for a change of creative scenery and a chance to explore other markets across the United States. The relocation of the band has given her new-found freedom to explore deeper avenues of music rooted in her childhood upbringing as a lover of retro-folk, reminiscent of Neil Young and Joni Mitchell. She has nestled into a vocally haunting, folk-influenced sound giving fans a more intimate look into her craft as a solo performer. She will release a long-awaited and highly-anticipated solo project "The Deep and the Sea" EP on November 4th of 2016.

As I reflected upon the story of Musical Charis moving from California to Florida, I must say I became very interested in their story. Many times I’ve seen musicians make the move in the opposite direction. California offers various opportunities not found in Florida, especially Northern Florida. South Florida can be a nice place for those looking for a start in the musical industry. However, the chosen music genre could be a deciding factor. California possesses almost limitless resources for those interested in a career in entertainment of all kinds.

The one thing I noticed about the move as far as Abbey and Musical Charis were concerned: the reasons for the move had more to do with the creative process. Of course, the southeastern United States might help with the style of folk based music. Now we will get a chance to hear for ourselves and judge if the move was truly beneficial.

The official music video for the first single on the record "The Deep and the Sea" was released in early September followed by the official release of the 5 song EP on November 4th, 2016.  She will promote the release on several mini East Coast tours in the fall and winter as well as a return to the West Coast in spring of 2016 to bring the album back to her roots in Sacramento, CA.