Jacquie Lee, only 15 at the time, held her own on The Voice Season 5 alongside much more seasoned singers and made it all the way to the runner-up spot. Since then, the Team Xtina prodigy has continued to grow and mature, despite some professional setbacks (including parting ways with her post-Voice label and management). Añnd the now 20-year-old pop-soul singer is returning with a hopeful new song, “California Dreaming,” premiering on Yahoo Music’s Reality Rocks today under the shorter and simpler stage name “Jacquie.”
Jacquie tells Yahoo the pounding, emotionally raw track is “inspired by loneliness and the city of L.A. When I moved, I’d never lived on my own before, and I had also just split with my boyfriend of a couple years. I wasn’t really sure who I was on my own. One thing that I would turn to when I felt anxious or depressed was roaming around the city and people-watching. It gave me mixed emotions; the two most common were sadness and motivation. The darker side of what I saw scared the s*** out of me, and still does.
“In an attempt to stop suppressing everything I was feeling, I sat down and wrote the song with a producer I had been wanting to work with, Stint [Gallant, Banks, Santigold]. Ultimately what I took from it all was that nothing in life is perfect. There will always be unavoidable highs and lows, but if you have a passion and a dream don’t let any of the bulls*** get in your way. Feel all of your feelings and do what you love doing — otherwise, what’s the point? Fear won’t dictate the little time I have on this planet anymore.”
Check out “California Dreaming” above. Jacquie will be releasing her new project, which she says showcases her true artistry, this fall.