Singer-songwriter Jessamyn Orchard is rolling out her first studio-recorded EP, “Consequences,” in a weeklong, pan-Ozarks series of release activities.
9 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 6 at Lindberg’s: “The Rounds” hosted by Krista Meadows. Singer-songwriters in the round: Jess, Cord Bishop, Joe Dillstrom and Chris Mau. When it’s Jess’s turn, she’ll perform songs from the EP.
7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 9: Facebook Live streaming songs and Q&A from Landing Pad Studio in Marionville, where her EP was made.
7-9 p.m., Sat. Feb. 10, at Wages Brewing Co., West Plains: official release party with CDs for sale. Jess grew up in Mountain View, Mo., and the band assembled to back her for the night will include Shane Fudge, her high school band director who now lives in Searcy, Ark. Other players: Ryan Dunn of Springfield and Dustin Miller of West Plains.
The recording will be available digitally for purchase on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon, and Bandcamp, as well as streaming on Spotify beginning on Feb. 9.
The EP explores consequences that are mostly bad, even when making choices intended for virtuous outcomes. She reached out to Robbie Davis & David Dameron of Landing Pad for a raw, minimal sound.
“Ain’t A Kick,” inspired by William S. Burroughs’ novel “Junkie,” addresses the current heroin and opiate addictions, which have claimed some of her friends.
“Be Satisfied” presents a tale parallel to “Romeo and Juliet.” “I took my ‘sad bastard style’ to it, of course, but looking at choices, and where you go with those,” she said.
A key lesson from this song comes in this line: “Attempts to overcome hate with love are not without consequence.”
“We see that every single day,” she said. “We see it with people throwing those hearts out into the world and just getting slammed and twisted. While it feels really good, almost happy, to say we’re going to conquer this hate with love, that is hard work. And that, too, is not without consequence.”
In contrast, her own choices to project an upbeat stage presence and to broaden her musical footprint have had consequences that are decidedly good.
She broadened the dynamics of her solo act by adding a looper, which has prompted her to name her additional electronic musical lines as the Imaginary Friends. She often invites saxophonist and tangible friend Ryan Dunn to join the gang.
With the help of Krista’s Full Circle Concept network for artists, Jess has been playing in hotels and restaurants in Branson, most rewardingly at the resort Stormy Point Village.
“That’s been a growing-experience-and-a-half: playing for literally a random sub section of the country on a Tuesday or Saturday night,” she said.
Meanwhile, she’s feeling more at home in the Springfield scene, finding Hotel V to be especially supportive.
“I love what I’m doing right now. I really do. I want to be able, through my music and writing and other creative endeavors, pay my bills with that,” she said.
“Just barely, that’s happening, right now.”