Three years after releasing her debut disc, "Shatter Queen," Milwaukee musician -- and former Miss Wisconsin -- Jayme Dawicki is ready to lauch a follow-up.
"Love Love" is officially unveiled at a rare Sunday, May 1 all-ages matinee performance at 3 p.m. at Turner Hall Ballroom. Julie Moffitt ends a three-year silence to open the show. Tickets are $15 and include a copy of the new disc.
Don't think she's been sitting around all that time. "Shatter Queen" quickly pushed Dawicki and her piano-fueled pop/rock into the spotlight. Songs from the record were heard on MTV's "The Real World Hollywood and Brooklyn," NBC's "Last Comic Standing," the Lifetime Network, in Kohl's Department Stores via the company's in-store radio and on Pandora.com.
Dawicki also hit the road, criss crossing the states, playing Hollywood's The Cat Club, New York's legendary The Bitter End and darn near everywhere in between.
A little over a year ago, she returned to the studio with the producer of "Shatter Queen," Daniel Mendez, whose resume boasts credits with Train, Dashboard Confessional, Duran Duran, Heart and scores for the films "Almost Famous" and "Vanilla Sky."
"The whole project began in January 2010," recalls Dawicki. "(Daniel and I) have a fantastic
working relationship and have become friends, as well. The reason why I love working with Daniel is he never settles for anything less then amazing. He challenges me and pushes me to achieve the best with lyrics, arrangement, vocals and keys. On top of it, he's extremely knowledgeable with the other instruments on the record and is a top-notch engineer and
Dawicki and Mendez did pre-production work in Dallas in spring and by June were recording at studios in Austin and Dallas.
"Matchbox Studios in Austin was a perfect location isolated out in the country ... and had a hot tub and pool," says Dawicki.
"The studio had a sleeping area and kitchen so we stayed right where we were recording. Vocals, guitar and sass guitar were recorded at Miles House in Dallas -- another place I was also able to stay right where all the action was taking place!"
Dawicki says that at times, making "Love Love" felt like the high point of her 31 years.
"Vocals were all recorded in one long weekend and it was one of the greatest times of my life! I feel like my voice is the strongest it's ever been and for the first time ever, I just enjoyed every minute of recording.
"The only stress of that weekend is that we had to record all the harmonies in about a 24-hour time period. We literally worked up until the minute I had to leave for the airport! But it all got done. We also got to add a few fun things like sleigh bells on 'Happy New Year' and a megaphone on 'Shout Out Loud'."
The record offers the same accomplished piano-laced youthful but mature pop music as its predecessor, with catchy songs and alluring vocals that easily explain Dawicki's success so far and seem to suggest more to come.
The tunes are often clearly personal, giving Dawicki's music an intimate feel, even when the productions are expansive.
"(The title) comes from a lyric in the song 'One More Year'," says Dawicki. "Basically, I chose it because all the songs are in one way or another about love: first love, an old love, losing love, friendship love, love of life, wrong love, etc. I also like that it is kind of an open-ended title. There is no punctuation so you can take it a number of ways."
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.