Growing up as a musical theater student, Carly Rae Jepsen was fortunate enough to have a popular older brother who looked out for her, so being bullied by classmates was never an issue. Jepsen’s brother also set an example by looking out for others, something that has stuck with the pop singer to this day.
“One of my proudest moments ever was seeing him stand up for a kid who was being bullied in school,” Jepsen recalls. “My brother was that popular boy in school, so when he made a stance against everyone who was picking on this kid, they stopped. I remember thinking, ‘Wow, this is the coolest he’s ever been.'”
In addition to a protective older brother, Jepsen comes from a family of educators and understands the devastating affects of bullying. As such, she’s been chosen as a spokeswoman for an anti-bullying campaign organized by Characters Unite, USA Network’s program dedicated to fighting hate and discrimination, and anti-bullying youth group Flip the Script.
Ahead of National Bullying Prevention Month in October, Jepsen will appear in an anti-bullying public service announcement that will air on USA Network and CharactersUnite.com. The singer has also been tapped to perform during a private concert on Oct. 3 for students and teachers at an undisclosed location. From Aug. 12 through Sept. 8, high school and middle school students can visit CharactersUnite.com for a chance to win free tickets to the concert, which will be hosted by Characters Unite and Flip the Script.
“[Jepsen is] one of the perfect people for this cause, because she reaches that younger group of people,” USA Network senior VP of public affairs Toby Graff says. “We’re trying to appeal directly to high school and middle school kids, and she has such a huge following with them that we thought she’d be able to get the message across easily to them.”
Meanwhile, Jepsen is currently touring North America in support of her latest album, “Kiss,” which has sold 271,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. The singer says she’s been writing new material on her tour bus.
“I have a little recording studio in the back of my tour bus where I’m making demos, so when I do hit the studio I’ve got a bunch of ideas up my sleeve,” Jepsen says. “Writing a record is probably my most favorite part of any of it. I love getting into the groove of that. I’m looking forward to the next couple of months.”
Jepsen didn’t reveal what musical direction her next album will take, but says she’s been inspired by recent albums from singers Solange and Kimbra. “I have a billion ideas in my head of exactly where I want to go, but at the end of the day I write what I write,” she says. “I’m definitely inspired by Solange and I’ve been digging Kimbra for a long time. Generally what I listen to somehow influences what I’m writing.”