An Interview with Jennifer Knapp: Part 1
Beliefnet sits down with Jennifer Knapp to discuss music, creativity, and Twitter in an in-depth interview.
Do you have any wisdom for musicians who are kind of getting started in this particular climate?
Well, I think my advice from that core hasn’t ever changed, because -- that’s been -- if you want to play, you better play because you love it. What I did last weekend, I drove 18 hours and I had one hour and a half show. You’re not going to count the time that I spent in preparing the paperwork for that, as an independent artist. I did one and a half hours worth of the glory thing, being the rock and roll star, and I spent four or five other days doing something just to get to that point. So if you don't really love music and you want to do it as a job, then go do it as a job. But I think you really have to be in love with your music, and if you want to play, then just play. Who cares what people are going to pay you? It's not dreaming about getting a record deal. Everybody and their dog right now is recording it on their own computer, and checking it up on the Internet and sharing it.
I think some of the most inspiring artists right now that are being successful are those who are just creatively -- just love the whole process. Anywhere from the social networking to going out and playing live shows and figuring out new and creative ways so they can get their name out on the street; because their that inspired to go and work and play and write and share the music. If that’s not what you’re after, I think you’re barking up the wrong tree. Have fun with it, no matter what. Because if you don't love it, there’s a lot of other stuff that -- like I said, in any 24-hour day of doing what I do, only one hour of that is on stage. The rest of it’s a lot of really hard work. And I love it, but if I didn't love that one-hour I got a day, it wouldn’t -- it’d make a very disproportionate ratio, I think. I’ve been there enough, [where] the ratio got disproportionate.
Do you enjoy doing Twitter?
Yes. I felt like an old lady. Like when I first got back around, it’s like, “You’ve got to get a Twitter account. You got to get Facebook. You got to do MySpace.” I’m like, “I got to do what?” It’s kind of fun. It actually turned out to be really kind of great, because I’ve actually made some really cool friends that way. You start to recognize certain personalities and they show up to shows. And it’s kind of -- it’s great. It’s kind of -- it’s nice if you’re like – you show up to some place and kind of have a home bay. You’re a thousand miles away from home so I kind of dig it. Other days, I’m like, “This is so dumb.” I sometimes -- if I haven’t Twittered for four or five days, then I’ve got 9,000 people coming back for me going, “Why am I attempting to sign up to your account if you don't say anything?” You don’t have anything to say, don’t say anything at all.
But it is kind of fun. And I really do appreciate that, and I think the one other thing I love about it most between, with Facebook and Twitter, is being able to actually share with the fans something you don't always get to share, which is the side of it, when you’re just totally riding the adrenaline high, it’s a really great night, and you’re just loving everybody that you have met. Sometimes, all I’ve ever been able to do is just go back to the bus or go back to the hotel room and then go, “Wow, that was a great night.” I have no place to put that. And now, it’s a really cool way of saying, “You guys really showed up tonight,” letting them know that the concert experience is just as fun for me; like I felt like I got to go to some place special and do something special. To able to give that back has been really fun. So I didn’t -- of all the reservations I had in doing it to begin with, that’s like one of the things that majorly makes up for it.
Look for part 2 soon, where Jennifer discusses spirituality, progressive Christianity, homosexuality, and her life outside of music.