10 Minutes With Soulful Singer Jessie Ware

embed-ware-05_ph_michael-bowlesPhotographed by Michael Bowles
We don't know about you, but we're still recovering from Lollapalooza — to the point where we have a nice date with our couch planned for the (entire) weekend. While it's nice that we have the luxury to relax, the bands that rocked our world are already off and running again— including Jessie Ware, the Brit songstress and Lolla performer we had the pleasure of chatting with between scouring for the best dressed at the fest. She's known for her 2012 hit single "Wildest Moments," which just so happened to make it as the theme song for a Durex condom commercial — atta girl! But in case you're not familiar, read on to see what our latest girl crush has to say about food, fashion, and what she wants you to do when you hear her music.
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Tell us a little bit about how you got your start?
"I was really lucky, actually. I started as a backup singer for a friend and he kept asking me to go on the road and travel and perform at festivals — it was really great fun. It finally got to the point where he asked me to go on a tour to America, so I had to quit my real job [working at a television production studio conducting journalistic research]. I told myself I'd give it a year to see if it'd work out. It kept on working out and eventually I got signed and had the chance to do an album and work with some really wonderful people.
Your music style has been categorized several ways — from pop soul to trip hop. How would you describe it?
"I think I would probably describe it as British electronic soul. I'm very proud to be British and I'm also mad about soul, but I want to keep it modern with the electronic aspect."
What would you like your listeners to get out of your lyrics?
"I think I would like people to get out of my music a bit of romance...a bit of nostalgia. My song "Wildest Moments" just got used in a Durex commercial. I've been banging on about how I really want people to have sex to my music, so this is something I'm very happy about."
What are your impressions about the Windy City?
"I've been here quite a few times, actually. I came her to visit my sister (actress Hannah Ware) when she was filming the television show Boss. I played here back in January and that was wonderful. Chicago has some really grand architecture. The food is good — I need to try and remember the name of this pizza place I ate at. It was so good man. I think it's one of my favorite cities in America. Great music, too."
What are some of your other passions/interests aside from music?
"Eating. I'm obsessed by food — and I got my guitarist obsessed as well. He's always on Chef's Feed choosing all the top places that all the chefs are recommending. I'm always bloody working, so I kind of have food envy."
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London is known for its incredible shopping scene — where are some of your favorite places to shop?
"I think Liberty is always a winner to go and get lost in. Also, King's Road. It's not as busy as Oxford Circus and it's just quiet easy. You can go and have a nice lunch, do a little shopping, and end with a little afternoon tea somewhere."
Do you have any favorite designers?
"I love Miu Miu. I think it's really fun, young, and exciting. I am also mad about Ganni!"
Would you say your style is different when you're performing?
"I would say that I'm always a fan of good tailoring, no matter what. That's definitely important to me. But when I'm not performing, I gravitate towards more comfy clothes. I have these amazing Penelope Chilvers slippers that have a JW on them. I live in those, along with my American Apparel riding pants. They are stretchy and I feel like they are the most comfortable things in the world — I feel like a little '50s girl in them. As far as when I'm on stage, I do tend to have my midriff out quite a bit."
So you love to eat, but you always have your midriff out. What do you do to stay in shape?
"I am quite lucky. I do sit-ups — sometimes. I go to the gym — sometimes. I mean, look at me. I've got thighs and a bum, so I do go to the gym. I like going, actually."
What’s your beauty routine like both on and off the road?
"Sisley products have really changed my skin. I'm obsessive about taking my makeup off at night and prepping my skin before flying. I'm running on empty a lot so I think you can always tell that within your skin. I drink this white matcha tea, which is amazing, so I'm really trying to look after myself and my body. As for makeup, a highlighter is really important."
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You're currently a brand ambassador for CK One Color cosmetics. What are some of your favorite products?
"If I'm not kissing my boyfriend that night, I'll wear a strong lip. Boys hate you wearing gloss or lipstick! I love the Lip Shines because they are super creamy and easy to apply quickly. The 3-in-1 Face Makeup is also amazing because it has a serum and a primer so it stays on. It's not cakey, so you can build on it."
What’s next for Jessie Ware?
"I'm doing an autumn tour in the States — my biggest one so far. And I will be making a stop in Chicago, so you'll have to come. I can't wait. Chicago is really good to me and my shows always sell out here."
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