SCHED* SXSW 2011 has ended
avatar for Sadie Jemmett

Sadie Jemmett

Produced by Steve Lee, mixed and co-produced in LA by David Bianco (Teenage Fanclub/Del Amitri/Tom Petty) and mastered in London by Kevin Metcalfe (Queen/David Bowie/Kinks/Oasis), her album, The Blacksmith’s Girl is the distillation of Sadie’s astonishing life story. Mostly written over the last year, the magical, eloquently confessional songs are all about coming to terms with her extraordinary and often traumatic past. Many of them delve deep into her own sub-conscious. Yet like the best songs of Joni Mitchell, at the same time they’re far more than pages torn from a private diary.

The album is set to appear on Wildflower, the label run by American folk legend Judy Collins. ”I opened for Judy at a show at London’s Jazz café last year,” Sadie recalls. ”She appeared when I was sound checking, which was a bit intimidating because I’ve always regarded her as an inspiration. But she seemed to like what she heard and afterwards invited me to her dressing room, wanting to know all about me and the songs.”

At the time Sadie assumed that Wildflower was purely a vehicle for Collins’ own releases. When she discovered that the label was signing other acts, she got back in touch. Collins had not forgotten the singer and the songs that had so impressed her that night at the Jazz Café, and a deal followed.

By this time, The Blacksmith’s Girl was already intact as an album. But in the meantime, of course, Sadie had been writing new songs, among them the wonderful ”Up On The Heath”, which has now been added to the album. Produced by Ed Harcourt, the track will be the first single.

”I was introduced to Ed and played him the song and he loved and said he wanted to be part of it,” says Sadie. ”He plays on it and produced it and he got Cass Browne from Gorillaz in on percussion. We did it in a day and I sat back and let him do it. He knew exactly what to do with the song.”

“The songs are a journey of healing and coming to terms with everything that has happened to me,” she says. “I wasn’t able to launch a career until now because I had to sort my life out – and I did that through the process of writing and playing. It’s a very personal and cathartic album. It’s saying this is where I came from, this is where I am”. But it sometimes feels as if it isn’t me really who wrote the songs. Somehow they were channeled through me and I think everyone can relate to what I’m singing about because the emotions are universal.”

My Artists Sessions