Alt-folk trio JEMS has made their debut and we’re all on board with what they have to say. Messages delivered in a three part harmony cut through the silence and their single “Like Myself,” a song dedicated to empowering your true voice, is perfectly addicting:
The girls waste no time, starting the song off in an a cappella three part harmony, chanting “Move aside, I won’t compromise.” Interlaced with a victorious organ, the tune is bright, organic and upbeat. Sandy drums support the story while different voices chime in to tell it. The way the song moves and changes keeps us on our toes yet we feel as though we’ve been on this journey before. The lyrics tell a familiar story of a censored life and the devotion to leaving that all behind. The end of the song is a slow burn downward, cutting out the meat and telling it like it is. Ending with simple harmonies, the women of JEMS give us a gentle reminder that “time is up, I won’t live like this.”
Emily Colombier from the group shares with us the difficult truth behind the song:
“Like Myself” was inspired by my own personal story as an empowerment anthem for all who have been silenced, to speak out. I was mentally and emotionally abused by my stepmother for close to 20 years, a story eerily close to the Cinderella story yet unfortunately, not a fairy tale.”
It wasn’t until after her father passed away that she finally understood the magnitude of the trauma. Emily cut her out of her life and soon after, reconnected with Jessica Rotter. Childhood friends, Emily and Jessica re-bonded over their love of music and when Sarah Margaret Huff joined the crew, the ladies realized they all shared similar, deep experiences. Struggling to own their truth and identity individually, the group became like therapy for them, taking back any power that could have silenced their authenticity.
JEMS full length, debut album comes out May 17th, giving us plenty of time to spin “Like Myself” on repeat in the meantime. Pre-order the album here.
There’s nothing like seeing the magic live. Keep up with JEMS on Instagram and be sure to catch the ladies’ Los Angeles record release show at The Hotel Cafe on May 18! More local dates below, as well as a Nashville gig!
5/18 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Hotel Cafe – RELEASE SHOW
5/25 – Nashville, TN @ The Basement
6/07 – Los Angeles, CA @ Telfair Gala
8/19 – Los Angeles, CA @ Harvard and Stone
Words by Ariana Tibi