Minhee Jones is an alt-pop artist, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist originally from Los Angeles and now based in London. The half-Korean singer has taken an evolutional musical journey, from her classical piano training at the age of four, to her punk-rock bass playing days in highschool and eventually into her own songwriting exploration in university, leading her into the solo artist she is today.
Jones had initially set out to succeed as an instrumentalist, before perfecting her vocals, confiding, “I felt it was my duty to be a female instrumentalist first and challenge stereotypes in a very male-dominated field.”
Jones’s upcoming debut EP showcases her sheer talents with her taking lead on the drums, bass, analog synths, piano and even a vintage harmonium. Leading single “6 Feet” started out as an ode to self-medication, written about all the ways we distract ourselves from reality. Then after Covid-19 hit, it became even more poignant. Jones explains, “I feel like we’re all in a place where our brains don’t want to deal with the full scope of this terrible thing that has taken over the world and we are also – more than ever – surrounded with means to medicate ourselves into avoiding it, be it actual medication, booze, chocolate, Netflix, or social media. So we’re stuck at home and suddenly we’re drinking more and eating more and binging more tv and online ALL THE TIME in an effort to not deal with just how destructive this virus has been to humanity.”
Sonically the single is dreamy and soothing, while the lyrics are very thought-provoking and contemplative. Featuring ethereal vocals, glistening instrumentation and cascading harmonies, “6 Feet” is a relevant soundtrack for our times. With influences ranging from Beethoven and Debussy to Aretha Franklin and Janelle Monae, and everything in between, Jones creates a genre-defying sonic palette.
Jones describes the creation of the music video, “Amidst all the chaos, what I found so intriguing about the pandemic is just how universal it all is. Everyone on earth is fighting this common enemy and for the first time truly united in a purpose. I wanted to put together a video time capsule showing what lockdown was like all around the world and see what bound us together. So I put out a call on social media asking for people to send me short video clips of what lockdown was like where they were and what was helping them cope with the pandemic.”
Growing up bi-racial (black and Korean) Jones found herself struggling with her identity, spending much of her life trying to either fit into a box that people kept saying wasn’t made for her, or rebelling against the box they thought she belonged in. Now, finally finding the courage to do what she wants both musically and in life, Jones hopes she can also help others feel comfortable with just being themselves. “If one of my weird songs or videos makes someone think ‘that girl does not give a fuck. Maybe I should give fewer fucks’ then that would be great.”, shares Jones.
In 2019, the singer teamed up with Fender, Ford, and Co-op Food and broke three Guinness World Records by playing concerts in 51 cities in 7 days to raise money and awareness for Music Venue Trust, without any booking agent, manager or record label. Described as a healthy dose of feel-good bitterness, Jones’s debut EP is set for release 2020.