'Finally Traveling In Ever-Increasing Circles'
The intensely emotional romantic relationship that inspired the 16 tracks of Jo Potter 's critically acclaimed debut '8 Circles' may have ended, but she still had an incredible Valentine's Day celebrating with (or, more accurately, alongside) some of pop music's biggest superstars.
“Valentine's Day Song,” the heartfelt, acoustic guitar-driven first single by the Miami-based singer/songwriter, was #1 Most Added for Three Weeks Straight on FMQB's AC40 Chart, and spent the week of Valentine's Day at #36—surrounded by songs by Rob Thomas, Train, Chris Rice, Gwen Stefani and Michael Buble.
“Every man is just dying to know what a woman wants,” she says, “and what I'm saying in the song is what we really need are not materialist things, but to know the person who loves us is always there, by our side. That's what really matters, and I think that's why the song is resonating.”
With clever yet universal lyrics, strong hooks, a blend of gritty pop rockers and tender ballads, and an infectious, radio-friendly sound, it's no wonder why so many of her songs have hit the Artistlaunch.com Top 40 playlist and have been popular on college radio stations like WVUM 90.5 FM.
While she's currently working with top national radio promoter Tom Mazzetta, Potter's buzz on the web extends to being chosen AOL's Musician of the Week and glowing reviews from DVD Movie Central. She has also licensed her music to Photoshow, a partner with Comcast offering free software that allows people to install Potter's songs in a loop accompanying their slide shows; another company she has licensed to is Shutterfly.
Chatting recently with Jo, and taking it from the top, I first considered the fact that her day job as a Cardiovascular Sonographer could be very interesting? "Unfortunately, when my job is very interesting, it usually means bad news for the patient. Finding pathology and saving lives can be exciting, but no one wants to hear they need surgery because they have a tumor in their heart. Can you blame them? ;-P"
Your new album title '8 Circles' is also a very interesting title, but I'm wondering just what it means to you? "The album title '8 Circles' is a loose translation of the name of an old boyfriend. The album was released after we broke up, and I even considered changing the name of the album. But there was something that didn't seem quite right about it. It kind of felt like bad ju ju.. you know.. like changing the name of a boat. Now when I think of what it means.. I guess there's a lot to be said about remembering both the good and the bad."
If there was one track on this new album that truly encapsulated Jo Potter at her musical and lyrical finest, which one would it be? "I can't answer this because I feel like I'm constantly growing as a songwriter ... hence, the last song I wrote, would have to be my best. But if you ask me which song is one of my favorites off the album, I'd have to tell you it's track #7, 'I Am Missing You'."
Do you think that your work as a Director of Ultrasound for a large cardiology group traveling around the country for years performing ultrasounds on people’s hearts provided your inspiration for your first "hearty" single, 'Valentine’s Day Song'?! "I normally ask all my 90+ year old patients, "What's the lesson you've learned?" A couple years ago, a man simply said, "Life's too short not to be doing what you are meant to do." This really hit home for me. So while it hasn't inspired me to write a specific song, it has given me the inspiration to be tenacious in my pursuit of doing what I'm meant to do."
Please tell us more about your affiliation with Photoshow and what it could mean to you re: getting your music out to the masses? "Photoshow has been using my music now for the past year or so. They recently signed an agreement with Comcast, and now all Comcast users can download this software and use it. Considering how many comcast users there are, and how many that like getting free stuff, ... well, let's just say I'm getting a lot of exposure from that alone and selling more than a few CDs ...;-)"
Being that you are a native of Maine, I was wondering just what it was like growing up there and what your early memories of Maine music were? "I was 6 when my family moved down to Florida, but I still remember a few things from Maine. Eating blueberries right off the bush. Sledding in the back of the house during winter. Picking wild Rubarb and dipping it in sugar. Making forts out of snow. Fried dough and french fries from Old Orchard Beach. Once we got snowed in with nothing to eat but lobster. Yeah, everything pretty much comes back to food for me ...;-)"
"As for the music, I remember my cousin, David, dancing and singing to 'You Ain't Nothing But A Hound Dog'. I also remember sitting in the back of a station wagon and listening to 'Thank God I'm A Country Boy' ... What can I say?? I was 6 and had no control of the radio!"
For fun, and taking the titles of a few of your album tracks, please let us know:
'Round and Round' - OK, so just what could easily spin you round and round on a daily basis if you let it?! "The need to try to accomplish everything in one day. Sometimes, I have to remind myself to relax and take it easy."
'Burn' - Has pyromania ever been on your list of things to personally indulge in?! "Depends on the type of pyromania. Burning down a building, no. But yearning for something so intense that scorches my soul ... always!"
'You Won't See Me Cry' - Being that this is hidden track #88, I'm wondering when the last time was you cried tears of joy so hard that you nearly wet yourself?! "The last time I nearly wet myself from laughing so hard was in December. It's more of an inside joke, but let's just say the words "Red Ass Baboon" still makes me laugh!"
It's been said that you a bit of a practical joker, so what has been one of the biggest pranks that you've pulled thus far?! "I can't tell you the biggest because it would probably get me indicted in 3 states. ;-)"
"Let's just say my favorite quote is by Voltaire ... "The opportunity to do mischief is found 100 times a day." ... and I think I've found 102. Besides, I can't give away all my secrets ... I use them on a daily basis! ;-)"
What '80s (and possibly cheesy!) pop song would you love to cover today if asked ... and why?! "It would be 'Melt With You' by Modern English. It is one of my all time favorite songs."
Lastly, I like Penguins ... do you?! "Why ... are you giving me the bird? ;-)"
Thanx again for doing this for us today, and we wish you all the best for the future. "Thanks for the well wishes and the third degree! ;-P"
Interviewed by Russell A. Trunk
If you would like to win an AUTOGRAPHED copy of Jo's brand new CD, just answer this easy question: Jo Potter wrote the anthemic, uplifting rocker “Together” as an initial response to which world situation?
Send me your answers and if you're correct you'll be in the running to win one of these great new and AUTOGRAPHED CDs! Just send us an e:mail here before May 15th with your answer and the subject title 'JO POTTER SIGNED CDs' to: firstname.lastname@example.org
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