Singer-songwriter Jane Carrey, daughter of comedian Jim Carrey, stepped out on her own at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue last night
Jane Carrey, who opened last night for acoustic star Mat Kearney at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue, has a story that isnâ€™t exactly standard for an up-and-coming singer-songwriter. Sure, it has elements youâ€™ve heard before: She just got her first big break (last nightâ€™s performance was part of her first national tour), and sheâ€™s getting a taste of life on the road. So far, Carrey has fanned herself in fetid, un-airconditioned dressing rooms, endured 12-hour bus rides, and boozed in grimy dive bars. Pretty normal for someone at the start of a musical careerâ€”except that Jane happens to be the daughter of Hollywood megastar Jim Carrey.
Sitting down to talk in a Chinatown coffee shop, Carrey seems bubbly but reserved. Although she bears a striking resemblance to her famous father, Carrey isnâ€™t exactly bouncing off the walls or hamming it up. Despite her comedic genes, sheâ€™s focused on songwritingâ€”and being recognized on her own merit. After picking up the guitar at age 14, Carrey found release through music.
Songs on the Jane Carrey Bandâ€™s eponymous debut album are soulful and boast a noticeable jazz influence. She cites artists Fiona Apple and Sheryl Crow as inspirationâ€”influences that are clear in songs such as â€śCity Lightsâ€ť and â€śBreathing Without You.â€ť Carreyâ€™s strong vocals reveal remarkable control and contain striking emotional depth.
Comedy, she says, was never in the cards for her. â€śWhen Iâ€™m on stage, I tell really stupid jokes. I am not a comedian.â€ť She formed the Jane Carrey Band in 2008 and has spent the better part of the last two years playing in small clubs across California. Future albums, Carrey says, may be more family-inspiredâ€”she and husband Alex Santana recently became parents to a son, Jackson.
Likewise, she isnâ€™t thrilled by the suggestion that sheâ€™s riding on her fatherâ€™s coattails. Sheâ€™s gone through pains to prove it, too. Up until the tour, Carrey had been earning a living waitressing at a Los Angeles seafood restaurant. â€śI like to be independent and self-sufficient,â€ť she says. â€śItâ€™s hard work. People assume that I donâ€™t have to work for it, but I booked all my own shows for two years.â€ť Getting frustrated, she reveals, is tempting. â€śI try really hard not to get defensive,â€ť she says. â€śPeople donâ€™t know, though, so I canâ€™t fault them. So I just have to smile. I pay my own rent!â€ť
Though sheâ€™s glad to be striking out on her own, her family remains a primary influence. Explaining her desire to perform, Carrey points to her heritage. â€śI come from a family of carnies,â€ť she says. â€śWeâ€™re circus folk at heart.â€ť
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