Jacqueline Devine, a 21-year-old digital media and design graduate student at UConn, has just released her newest single “Postcard,” a sweet, acoustic-driven love song.
Its heartfelt guitar riff was created using MIDI Imports, a process that allows Devine to hook up a keyboard to her laptop, play the piano herself, and then convert the chords to a different instrument.
“This technology allows me to be a more dynamic artist in terms of what I can produce and put out there,” Devine said.
The song has strong Colbie Caillat and Sara Bareilles influences, the latter of which is one of Devine’s biggest inspirations.
“I like [Bareilles] so much because she sort of flies under the radar,” Devine said. “She is immensely talented but doesn’t get caught up in drama. She makes headlines for good things, like writing the music for ‘Waitress.’ A lot of pop singers tend to sell out and try to fit a certain mold but she doesn’t.”
Other artists that Devine takes inspiration from are Adele, Ryan Tedder, Gavin DeGraw and Ingrid Michaelson.
Devine wrote the second half of “Postcard” a few months after writing the first, and this time gap is an important part of her songwriting process. The first half of the song portrays sadness about the end of a relationship, while the second half is more hopeful, showing that everything will end up being okay. This shift shows growth and maturity, two important components of Devine’s work.
“The shift in the song is a direct by-product of me finishing the song months later,” Devine said. “When I write music this way and let time go by, it not only makes the song better but it offers a different perspective. I’m able to go back and change lyrics, and this allows me to put out the best version of the song I can.”
“Postcard,” like songwriting in general, was a cathartic experience for Devine.
“Songwriting for me has always been this coping mechanism, a thing I turn to whenever something good bad or ugly happens,” Devine said.
The title of the single also plays into catharsis.
“I had the song completed and it was titleless for the longest time because nothing felt like it stuck,” Devine said. “I was thinking about the song in its entirety and it felt like a postcard, like I was sending this letter to this person telling them that I’ve been thinking about them, but also that I’m okay with how things turned out. The song is sort of like the conclusion of a chapter for me.”
Originally from Westport, Connecticut, Devine has been involved in music since the third grade when she started piano lessons. At first classically trained, Devine switched to ear training, which launched her songwriting.
“[Ear training] felt more natural than reading sheet music and also more creative. It really used another part of my brain, and from there I started writing music using mostly chord progressions, then writing the lyrics and melodies on top of that,” Devine said.
She started writing music seriously her freshman year of high school and released her first single, “Just Be,” in tenth grade.
As Devine continued to mature as a student, person and artist, her music consequently changed. In 2015, as a junior in college, she released her full album “Leap” on SoundCloud. The album was a collection of songs from high school and early college. The response to “Leap” was positive.
“Releasing music is such a vulnerable process; these are stories that are personal, so it’s so motivating when someone says they loved it. Every text, Facebook message, and comment I’ve gotten on the album is a feeling I can’t describe,” Devine said. “It validates your art and it also says to you that people are connecting with the stories you’re singing about. Somebody hears you and it makes them feel something.”
“Postcard” is the first single to be released from Devine’s newest album, which is currently in the works. This new album will be different from “Leap” in that it will be a more cohesive piece of art.
“‘Postcard’ is a great preliminary start to my next album, since it represents a sort of turning point in my music. It’s not me writing music in my bedroom in high school anymore; it’s more mature, it has more of an edge to it,” Devine said. “There will also be more love songs on this album, like ‘Postcard’. It’s going to have a much more diverse array of music which I’m really excited about.”
To listen to “Postcard”, go to SoundCloud.
To keep up with Jacqueline Devine’s music, fashion and beauty blog, go to justbeingdevine.com
Lucie Turkel is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.