Jocelyn Mackenzie (Pearl and the Beard) preps debut solo LP (watch the “BETTER” video)
Brooklyn's Pearl and the Beard broke up a few years ago, but singer Jocelyn Mackenzie is now gearing up for her debut solo album, PUSH, due in early 2021 via Ani DiFranco's Righteous Babe Records (pre-order on IndieGogo). "Pearl and the Beard were beloved touring mates and it’s wonderful to now support Jocelyn Mackenzie’s new chapter as a solo artist with Righteous Babe," Ani says. "Both Jocelyn and her music have an irrepressible spirit that will leave you feeling energized and uplifted."
The album was made with a string quartet, as well as Sam McCormally (Fellow Creatures, Igual Que Tú), Emily Hope Price (Pearl and the Beard, Jenny Lewis), Franz Nicolay (The Hold Steady, World Inferno Friendship Society), Adam Schatz (Landlady, Sylvan Esso), Jo Lampert (Tune-Yards, David Byrne’s Joan of Arc), and others, and along with the announcement, we're premiering lead single "BETTER" and its video, which Jocelyn created, produced, edited, and starred in, with contributions from over 70 people in quarantine.
"I wrote 'BETTER' over five years ago in a wave of genuine gratitude for the unconditional love I was receiving during a really rough time," Jocelyn says. "I had no idea how accurate and necessary its message would become. Sam McCormally’s beats and string arrangements really expanded 'BETTER' and transformed it into this incredible pop anthem of finding and using our power. When quarantine hit and I had the idea for the music video, I knew I needed to invite as many people as possible to connect on this project. With everyone going through this new and scary time, it seemed like a way to bring people together in a creative way that would hopefully offer everyone a boost to keep going. On my end, I was determined only to use whatever art materials I already had in my house as a gentle stand against the idea that we need money to make a difference. We each have the power to make the world better in our own unique way, exactly as we are, and it was amazing to see how joyfully everyone came together to co-create something so joyful, powerful, personal, and moving."
The song is a pretty irresistible dose of art pop that brings to mind artists like St. Vincent and My Brightest Diamond, and if you're a fan of either of those, you should definitely check this out. Listen and watch the video right here: