Jill Fulton to celebrate launch of second album
Local country music is heating up for one local performing artist.
The release party for Jill Fulton’s second full-length CD, “Fuel to the Fire,” will take place at Suite 710 in Hagerstown on Saturday, May 25, from 7 to 9 p.m. The event was originally planned for Cancun Cantina West, but had to be moved due to remodeling.
Not one to be pigeonholed into one genre, Fulton is trying to cover new ground with her new record.
“My first album (Southern Breeze) is more country,” Fulton told a reporter over the phone from her Greencastle, Pa., home.
“This one is a combination of blues and country. People want you to pick a side. I’m country bluesy, that’s what I am.”
While her first CD, “Southern Breeze,” consisted of carefree, fun-loving tracks, the material on “Fuel to the Fire” bares Fulton’s soul. Songs range from topics of addiction to dying young.
Fulton said the topics leave her feeling more vulnerable than she has in her entire career.
“The last album I played it safe,” she said. “I did that on purpose because I knew there would be a learning curve with this. I held back all the songs that were more powerful or more meaningful, because I wanted to make sure I did them well. This one has more depth and more power. You can’t listen to this CD and not feel something. One of these songs has to hit you.”
Among these hard-hitting songs are “Senseless,” written about a young boy who died in a car accident that Fulton witnessed.
“It’s in memory of Elijah Allen, who died May 17, 2016,” she said. “It’s inspired by him. The song itself is about when we lose people we love too young. I kept thinking this was just senseless. Writing that song helped me move on from it. It’s dedicated to him, but also to people we lose much too young.”
Fulton’s song “In the Dark,” is about her experiences of aiding a friend with drug addiction.
“Everyone’s touched by addiction these days,” she said. “I helped a friend who was going through addiction, and she made it through. I’m really vulnerable on this one because I’m really putting myself out there.”
Fulton is supportive of artists from the local music scene, such as Pale Barn Ghosts and others. She encourages her fans to go see other bands and enjoy the talent emerging from the area.
“I always encourage people to support local music,” she said. “There’s so much talent in our area. It’s an exciting time in the four-state area. I always try to remind people to get out there and see these musicians.”
One of the greatest euphorias an artist can receive is when a fan admires your art.
“When somebody comes up to you and they say how that song has touched them, that’s incredible,” Fulton said. “It’s the best compliment you can get. ... that you’ve helped them in some small way.”
Fulton plans to reinvent herself on her next record again, having been inspired by a tour she went on at Stax Records in Memphis, Tenn.
“The next one I want to be a soul album,” she said. “Each time I try to dig a little deeper. I think that would be a challenge for me and a new direction to go in.”