It will be a homecoming of sorts for Jenn Grant when she ventures onto the stage at the National Art Centre, this Friday.
Although she’s never lived in Ottawa herself, her mother lived in the area while her grandfather, Daniel J. MacDonald, served as the Minister of Veteran Affairs in Pierre Elliott Trudeau’s cabinet.
“[My grandfather] was good friends with Jean Chretien and Trudeau,” says Grant. “I love playing in Ottawa. I still have family here, two uncles and a few cousins.”
Grant has played in the area a few times before. In 2012, she made an appearance at the NAC and she’s rolled into The Black Sheep Inn a few times in Wakefield. This time around, Grant is coming in with new material from her newly released EP, Compostela.
“I segregated myself while I wrote it. It was different from previous material,” says Grant. “With Beautiful Wild, it was an impulsive writing experience…this one was the opposite. I was choosy with the type of vibe I wanted to create.”
Simply put, Compostela offers a psychedelic folk experience, highlighted by Grant’s smooth, melancholic voice and softly strummed classic guitar.
“It was the first time we recorded at our home studio, which is right by the water and nature on Echo Lake, [about 25 minutes outside of Halifax]. It definitely had a profound impact,” says Grant.
With that said, Grant attributes her late mother as the album’s largest influence. Grant envisioned Compostela, which literally translates as field of stars, during a trip to Spain in 2012, shortly after her mother’s death.
“My trip to Spain took me back,” she says “When I got back, I just locked myself in my camper and wrote.”
You can listen to Grant’s new album on iTunes or you can experience her in person this weekend. View her latest video:
Jenn Grant takes the NAC Fourth Stage for two nights: November 28-29, 2014. Tickets start at $25 and can be purchased here.