One of the winners of our Challenge, Jules Iolyn, is a tremendously talented artist who sees music as her one and true calling. In this interview, you’ll learn more about her, her music, and what moves and drives her career. She will also tell us how cancer has played a huge, albeit a terrible role in her life, as it affected both her family and friends. It’s only fitting that we compare her music to a weapon that defeats cancer.
Q: What was your original calling to music? How did you start out?
So, my original calling to music was apparent from when I was a kid. I loved discovering new music, and music could make me feel things that I could not find anywhere else. It was a friend I could rely on when the world got me down. I started taking it seriously once I turned 21 and sang at an open mic for the first time. Never have I been more nervous, and never have I felt more excited. The response from the people around me gave me this push to discover what I really had to offer. So, I bought a guitar and a lesson book and taught myself how to play! I had been writing stories and poetry and journaling for years, so when I finally had a vehicle to put these words into songs, it changed my life! My voice and guitar are the vehicles for my songwriting.
Q: Who or what is your musical inspiration? Which artist(s) do you look up to?
I have three main pillars of inspiration for music. Ani DiFranco, Gillian Welch, and Brandi Carlile. I also like to throw Tom Petty in there because that’s one of the artists my Dad played often, and I listened to all the time growing up. Ani DiFranco has shaped me as a person, not just as an artist. She gives me the courage and the desire for individuality.
Q: Why did you become involved with Music Beats Cancer? Has cancer directly or indirectly affected you?
I became involved with Music Beats Cancer because I consider music the main form of my activism and my push for social change. I think pop culture and art can be one of the most uniting experiences for us as emotional human beings, and I feel compelled to participate. Cancer has directly affected me. My parents’ first child lost her battle with cancer at age 8, and so did my Aunt. Outside of my family, I also have friends currently battling cancer or that have battled cancer and both won and lost. Cancer sucks.
Q: What is happening next in your music career?
Next in my music career, I am aiming to expand my radius of touring and get my songs heard by as many people as possible. I also have this small EP that I’m getting ready to release. I feel like I am meant to express myself and be a voice for many.
Q: Anything else you would like Music Beats Cancer readers to know about you?
I don’t often write about love, but I often write about my push to be an individual and be heard and my frustrations with feeling misunderstood. I often write about how similar we all are and how we can unite and change the world together. I write about anxiety and my fear of failure and my uncontrollable urge to compare myself to the people around me, even though we are all on our own path.
Ultimately, everyone wants you to be happy, and everyone wants to be happy. The goal of this life we live is to be happy, whatever form that takes.
Jules Iolyn has released her new EP titled We’re Getting There, just today.
Go check it out here: https://julesiolyn.bandcamp.com/album/were-getting-closer
1. Bold 03:23
2. Lust 03:43
3. Mutual Love 03:25
4. Courage to Part 04:10
Vocals: Jules Iolyn
Rhythm Guitar: Jules Iolyn
Lead Guitar: Ben Majeska
To learn more about Jules Iolyn, visit her Music Beats Cancer profile.