Paris Jackson poses for a portrait in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Oct. 27, 2020, to promote her debut solo album “Wilted,” releasing on Nov. 13. Her new single “Let Down” drops Friday, Oct. 30. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Paris Jackson poses for a portrait in Beverly Hills, Calif., on Oct. 27, 2020, to promote her debut solo album “Wilted,” releasing on Nov. 13. Her new single “Let Down” drops Friday, Oct. 30. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Paris Jackson mines her heartache for solo debut album

11 songs on the concept album ‘Wilted’

NEW YORK — It started in her bedroom with just a guitar, but Paris Jackson has turned coping with the heartache after a recent breakup into her debut solo album.

Jackson, 22, has been a devoted music fan all her life and dabbled in making her own, but has been hesitant to call herself a singer-songwriter until now.

“It’s one of the greatest feelings I’ve ever experienced,” Jackson told the Associated Press in an exclusive interview this week.

She describes her ethereal acoustic sound as alternative folk — a far cry from the genre of her father, Michael Jackson. Being the daughter of the King of Pop adds an extra layer of scrutiny to the vulnerability required to put personal songs out into the world.

“I’m excited, I’m nervous, but I feel confident that the people that are supposed to hear this record are going to hear it. It’s going to reach them. And with regards to critics and stuff, I don’t really think they’re going to know how to critique it,” Jackson says.

Earlier this year, Jackson was one half of acoustic duo “The Soundflowers” with boyfriend Gabriel Glenn, until the two split. She describes nursing a broken heart as a literal “aching in your chest,” but Jackson turned her pain into art. “You were my all/And now I fall to the ground,” she sings on her new single “Let Down,” which drops Friday.

The time in her bedroom resulted in 11 songs on the concept album, “Wilted,” released by Republic Records, and out on Nov. 13. All the stages of grief are represented in her lyrics: anger, denial, bargaining and acceptance, but the last song, the upbeat “Another Spring,” reveals a stronger woman who lets her “wounds shine through.”

Jackson cites many musical influences — including singer-songwriters Damien Rice, Ray LaMontagne and Conor Oberst. Her eyes light up when she talks about being a “massive fan” of the indie rock band Manchester Orchestra. When she heard that guitarist-singer-songwriter Andy Hull from the band would produce her first record, she was elated. She flew to Atlanta to work with him and says the band was supportive of her sound.

“Everyone was just so welcoming and so kind and they held this project to be, like, very sacred. They understood my emotional connection to it and understood that this is my baby. They didn’t want to do anything that wasn’t authentic to who I am and they just took it to the next level,” Jackson says.

Michael Jackson famously attempted to shield his three young children from the spotlight. After Jackson’s death in 2009 of an overdose of the anesthetic propofol, Paris and her two brothers — who go by Prince, 23, and Bigi, 18 — went to live with their grandmother, Katherine Jackson. Paris moved out at 18 and has been modeling and acting, but always played music.

In June, she and Glenn had a docu-series on Facebook Watch called “Unfiltered,” which provided a glimpse into her private life and the duo’s small acoustic tour. Jackson revealed self-harm and suicide attempts in her testimonials, and said music was a way to channel her pain.

There’s an upcoming music video to go with the new single “Let Down,” a nod to the younger Jackson’s love of horror and gore. In it, the character she plays has her heart literally ripped out of her chest by her lover. One of the recurring scenes is set in dark woods, reminiscent of elements in her father’s famous “Thriller” video. When asked what he might think of her music, Jackson demurs.

“I don’t know. I’m not him, so I can’t speak for him. But I hope he would be happy, and I think he would be stoked because I’m happy,” she said.

The pandemic has sidelined most musical acts and Jackson says she misses hearing her favourite bands live and aspires to play a few shows soon, if anti-COVID-19 measures allow. She said she hopes the music will help people feel “a little less lonely.”

“I found so much healing through creating this. And there are moments where I’ll listen back to certain songs and I’m like, ‘Wow I was so naïve.’ But for the most part, it’s just like so much gratitude and joy that I get from listening to these songs and just seeing the development and the evolution,” she said.

By The Associated Press

Music

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Red Deer RCMP say a 30-year-old man faces sexual charges against a teen. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Man killed in two-vehicle collision near Penhold, says Blackfalds RCMP

A 46-year-old man is dead following a two-vehicle collision on Highway 42… Continue reading

(Photo by Paul Cowley/ Advocate Staff)
Mask bylaws not popular in rural areas

Red Deer and Blackfalds bylaws requiring masks in public places kick in on Monday

Red Deer RCMP say a 30-year-old man faces sexual charges against a teen. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Innisfail RCMP arrest man following ‘lengthy pursuit’

Innisfail RCMP say a “lengthy pursuit” through a rural area ended with… Continue reading

hay
Hay’s Daze: Giraffe knows filling wishes can sometimes be a tall order

Last weekend, I had a lovely breakfast. “So what?” you may say.… Continue reading

A person enters a building as snow falls in Ottawa, Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. Ottawa has been successful in limiting the spread of COVID-19 during its second wave thanks to the city’s residents who have been wearing masks and staying home, said Ottawa’s medical officer of health Dr. Vera Etches. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
People to thank for Ottawa’s success with curbing COVID-19: health officer

The city’s chief medical officer said much of the credit goes to the people who live in Ottawa

NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh asks a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa, Thursday, Nov. 26, 2020. NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh says tonight's public video gaming session with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is about reaching young people where they hang. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
NDP leader stoked over ‘epic crossover’ in video gaming sesh with AOC

Singh and AOC discussed importance of universal pharmacare, political civility, a living wage

A south view of the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf breaking apart is seen from Ward Hunt Island, Nunavut, in an Aug. 20, 2011, handout photo. The remote area in the northern reach of the Nunavut Territory, has seen ice cover shrink from over 4 metres thick in the 1950s to complete loss, according to scientists, during recent years of record warming. Scientists are urging the federal government to permanently protect a vast stretch of Canada's remotest High Arctic called the Last Ice Area. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-CEN/Laval University, *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Scientists urge permanent protection of Last Ice Area in Canada’s High Arctic

Tuvaijuittuq has the thickest and oldest ice in the Arctic

In this file photo, a lotto Max ticket is shown in Toronto on Monday Feb. 26, 2018. (By THE CANADIAN PRESS)
No winning ticket for Friday night’s $55 million Lotto Max jackpot

No winning ticket was sold for the $55 million jackpot in Friday… Continue reading

In this Friday, March 13, 2020, photo, Nic Talbott looks up from his computer at his home in Lisbon, Ohio. Talbott was participating in an Army ROTC program after an Obama administration policy permitted transgender people already serving in the military to be allowed to do so openly. As vice president in 2012, Joe Biden endeared himself to many LGBTQ Americans by endorsing same-sex marriage even before Obama. Now, as president-elect, Biden is making sweeping promises to LGBTQ activists, proposing to carry out virtually every major proposal on their wish lists. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Biden plans swift moves to protect and advance LGBTQ rights

As vice-president in 2012, Joe Biden endeared himself to many LGBTQ Americans… Continue reading

Canadian Olympic gymnast and National Sport School alumni Kyle Shewfelt announces his retirement in Calgary, Thursday, May 21, 2009. Calgary's board of education will close the National Sport School that has produced Olympic and Paralympic champions for 26 years. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Calgary’s National Sport School to close, looks to join a different school division

Calgary’s National Sport School to close, looks to join a different school division

Canada's Erica Wiebe, left, celebrates after defeating Nigeria's Blessing Onyebuchi, right on the ground, to win Gold medal in women's FS 76Kg wrestling at the Commonwealth Games on Gold Coast, Australia, Thursday, April 12, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Manish Swarup
Canada’s Olympic champion wrestler Erica Wiebe eyes return to competition

Canada’s Olympic champion wrestler Erica Wiebe eyes return to competition

Most Read