Family roots played a large part in the development of Jill’s songwriting sensibilities. The youngest of five and growing up in a house full of music lovers, a whole range of influences - from Burns and traditional ‘sing-along-ers’, to 60s folk, punk, pop, and probably most things in between - shaped her appreciation of the power of song.
Lacking the confidence to transform this passion into performing, Jill was a 'bedroom songwriter' for many years before finally summoning up the courage to go along to an open mic in Glasgow's The Halt bar where the enthusiastic response to her songs encouraged her to write and play more. She found a ' musical home' as a regular at Edinburgh 's long-running songwriters' night Out Of The Bedroom and from there took her first tentative steps into gigging and recording. Her first EP Groovy Enough For Two was played on BBC Scotland's Iain Anderson show, and by Bob Fischer at BBC Radio Tees, receiving positive reviews in The List and Is This Music? Then followed the debut album, snowflake, which was Album of the Week on BBC Scotland's Iain Anderson show, declared to be 'fab' by Bob Fischer at BBC Radio Tees, and deemed 'a joy to listen to' by Music News Scotland.
Since then gigs have included support slots for the likes of Martin Stephenson and Edinburgh indie band frontman Gordon Ballboy, a live session on Scots songstress Carol Laula’s Sunny Govan community radio show, as well as spots at Falkirk Tryst Folk Festival and Middlesbrough Music Live.
Jill has just released her second album, The Lantern Has Fallen, recorded at The Tolbooth studio in Stirling . The Falkirk singer-songwriter had the honour of having tracks on it produced by one of her musical heroes, folk troubadour/Daintees front man Martin Stephenson, who also plays guitar on some tracks. Kenny Brady, formerly of The Fall, contributes fiddle, mandolin and backing vocals.
The album is a collection of songs written on banjo – a departure from the guitar-led songs on snowflake and also darker in tone - but still with the very personal and intimate qualities for which she has become known.
Jill said: “I wanted to create something which, musically, had that old-timey sound, but with lyric which are more contemporary, or at least which are more honestly personal to me.”