“Wow, people think I still play jazz,” Becca Stevens remarks about how the association of having studied jazz prodigiously (at the New School with Soul Sisters host Darah Golub) has followed her throughout her distinctly non-jazz career.
“That’s what we do as listeners, or eaters, or anything,” she empathizes. “When you’re experiencing something, your initial reaction is, ‘Okay, how do I put this in a box to help me understand it more?’ It’s like, ‘Ooh this reminds me of a blend between LeAnn Rimes and Limp Bizkit!’ That’s what we do.”
And though the singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist switches seamlessly on her Becca Stevens Band albums between folk, pop and even the odd Frank Ocean or Usher cover (her deconstructed version of “You Make Me Wanna” from 2015’s Perfect Animal is not easily forgettable), Stevens insists she’s not intentionally trying to check off any boxes.
“When you’re on the artist end of that you’re not thinking about, ‘I’m gonna write a song that’s a blend between LeAnn Rimes and Limp Bizkit,'” she points out – though she does admit that the artist who could perfect that kind of formula “would sleep on a golden mattress.” Stevens spends too much time on the road these days to worry about what kind of mattress she’s sleeping on –including time she’ll soon be spending in L.A. recording a new album with good friend David Crosby.
Listen to Stevens discuss all of this and more, plus perform a new song, on this episode of Soul Sisters recorded at NYC’s Chord Club and hosted by Darah Golub and Billboard‘s Jessie Katz. And be sure to subscribe to our iTunes channel to hear all upcoming episodes!