Fans, family motivate this musical multitasker
‘Greatest Hits’ tour is Jewel’s latest project
It’s been 18 years since Jewel released her debut album, “Pieces of You,” which would spawn three hit singles and go platinum 15 times.
In the ensuing years, Jewel has continued to tour and record, releasing hit pop and country records, three CDs of children’s music, and now, a greatest hits collection.
That collection, of course, includes all the big songs: “Who Will Save Your Soul,” “You Were Meant for Me,” “Foolish Games,” “Hands,” and “Satisfied,” among others. There’s a new song, “Two Hearts Breaking,” and re-recordings of two old hits with some new voices: “You Were Meant for Me” featuring the Pistol Annies and “Foolish Games” with Kelly Clarkson.
The multihyphenate – singer-songwriter-guitarist- poet-writer-actress – is touring in support of “Greatest Hits,” and she lands at Northern Quest Resort & Casino tonight. In a recent phone interview from her home in Texas, Jewel talked about her music, her family and playing June Carter Cash in a recent Lifetime television movie.
SR: How is the tour going?
Jewel: Wonderful. It’s so fun. Having him (her 22-month-old son, Kase) on the road with me has been so fun. We spend all day going to children’s museums and science centers and aquariums. Then I put him down at 7 and put makeup on and go on stage at 8:30 or 9. The only hard part is I go to bed on rock ’n’ roll hours and wake up on mom hours. It’s pretty tiring.
SR: Is he a good traveler?
Jewel: He’s a wonderful traveler. I couldn’t ask for any better. He loves new adventures every day.
SR: Are the fans enjoying hearing all these greatest hits live?
Jewel: It’s been a really fun tour. I’m solo acoustic on this tour and I don’t do set lists, so every show is different every night. There are more than 500 songs in my catalog and my fans know all of them. What’s funny about the tour is oftentimes the ones they’re screaming out for are underground hits that have never been recorded but have been passed around and become very popular in the underground. It’s almost like there are the greatest hits on the record and these unreleased greatest hits that people are requesting. It’s kind of funny.
SR: Have you ever thought about releasing an official bootleg?
Jewel: Every night I bootleg the show and sell it because there are so many unreleased songs, and this way fans can have good high-quality versions of them until I get them recorded one day. You can buy the show afterward in a CD case. Give us your email address and in about a week I get it mixed and send it to you.
SR: You had the June Carter Cash movie on Lifetime (“Ring of Fire” premiered on Monday). Are you doing any of her songs in your set these days?
Jewel: I do “Ring of Fire” in my set right now. … It’s a lot of fun to do. … You realize it was written by a woman who was falling in love with another man while she was still married, and it gives it such a different sense of drama. It’s really great.
SR: How did the movie role come to you?
Jewel: They just called me and offered it to me. They were pretty determined for some reason. The producers really felt I was right for the job. … I enjoyed being able to sing in character. It was a lot of fun to not use my own voice but to use somebody else’s, as it were.
SR: June had a deeper range than you.
Jewel: She definitely had an alto voice, and a different color and vibrato and tone. It was pretty fun to imitate her.
SR: What’s next for you? Is there another album in you?
Jewel: I have lots of music in me, but I’m not sure how it’s going to come out. I’m not sure I’ll do major record releases again just because of the major time commitment of really promoting a record. Indie releases are really fun for now. I’m doing a Christmas record this fall and winter. I have another folk record – I’d like to do another “Pieces of You.” I’d like to do a jazz standards album. And another country album. So we’ll see what order and how and what.