By Cheryl Thompson
Jd Webb, an award winning singer/songwriter/producer, will be releasing his debut album later this year. The Introduction is a wonderful mix of soul, R&B, and rock all rolled into one surprising package. Led by the single, “Big for Me,” Webb is already receiving accolades from peers like Robin Thicke, to name a few. Webb has an undeniable voice and a warm and commanding presence as both a singer and piano player. SoulMatters had the chance to speak with Webb a few weeks ago following the release of “Big for Me” and we believe he’s not just a pretty face, but a sure-to-be star.
SoulMatters: You have a beautiful voice. Are you classically trained or natural born talent? Sort of hard question to answer of yourself, but it’s clear to me that you sing from the heart so I’m curious to know where it all comes from.
JD Webb: I would say it's more natural born. But, almost everyone in my family sings so I got a lot of training as well. I spent many summers on a tour bus with my mom and her sisters. I was singing harmonies by kindergarten and arranging vocals by the age of 10.
SMM: The lead single, “Big for Me,” what is that song all about?
JW: The inspiration for Big For Me came from the fact that I used to say that phrase a lot. Like, "dude I can't believe I did that, that's Big For Me ( I don't say it as much anymore cause every time I do someone starts singing the chorus). The song is about being in love and realizing that I'm starting to make decisions that are no longer just about me, but about her and us. That's Big For Me.
SMM: You’re a singer, a songwriter and producer, do you prefer any one of those roles over the other or are they all equally gratifying for you?
JW: I love it all. Being on stage is second nature, I love it. Writing a song that touches people or that people can relate to is amazing and with producing, it's the joy of seeing that song come together, I'm just glad that I don't have to choose one over the others.
SMM: Your debut, “The Introduction” seems to be a play on words, so to speak. You’ve been around behind the scenes and in front for some time, so what is the intent behind the album’s title. Who are you introducing yourself to?
JW: Even though I've been in the music "business" for a while now, this really is for me an introduction. It's the introduction of my music as a solo artist, an introduction to the music that I've been waiting to put out my whole life.
SMM: Would you describe yourself as a soul singer or a singer with soul?
JW: I would say both. Some of my songs are straight soul, which I guess makes me a soul singer, but there is definitely evidence of soul in all my songs.
SMM: Who do you listen to?
JW: Of course Stevie, Marvin, Aretha. I love Billie Holiday and Nina Simone. Kanye West and Common, Ne-Yo, but my taste is eclectic as well. Depending on the day I may be listening to Acid Jazz, Electronica, Melodic rock but I always come back to R and Soul.
SMM: Over the past ten years there seems to be a return of the singer/piano player with artists like Alicia Keys, John Legend, even Robin Thicke, what is it about playing the piano that you love so much?
JW: I've been playing for as long as I can remember so for me it's second nature. It's kind of like asking what I like about breathing? It's part of who I am.
SMM: As this website is called “SoulMatters” I like to ask everyone I interview, what does having “soul” mean to you?
JW: How much time do you have? Having soul goes deep to the core and touches people in that same way. When someone has a "soul" experience, they're are changed forever. To be given the opportunity to touch people on that level is beyond humbling. Words can't describe the feeling.