Wednesday
Dec 21

Jen Sygit

Jen Sygit has been writing songs since she was knee high to a grasshopper. Her parents report that as a child she gravitated toward the musical instruments in the room and within minutes was able to play melodies on them. As early as Elementary school Jen could be found writing love songs on her parents beat-up organ in their basement and by middle school she was also composing songs on her acoustic guitar (a gift bought on a whim by her parents- upon which she has never had a lesson). It was this affinity for music that led her parents to encourage Jen to audition for the Interlochen Fine Arts Camp which she attended for several years during her adolescence studying voice, trombone, piano and visual art.

Born in Port Huron, MI, Jen spent her childhood years in the nearby town of Marysville, where she lived until 1999 when she moved to Lansing to attend Michigan State University. Jen quickly infiltrated the capital city’s music scene via the area open mics and blues jams. It was at one of these jams that she picked up her first gig as front woman for a blues-rock band called Murdawg and the Lowdown, Dirty Strays. During her stint with Murdawg she learned about an opening at world-renowned music store Elderly Instruments. Jen was hired and worked at the music shop for three years-attributing her ecclectic mix of tunes to her time there. At Elderly Jen honed her acoustic guitar skills while also learning how to frail banjos, strum ukuleles and pick dobros.

Jen now has three albums under her belt with her latest So Long Pollyanna to be released on Earthwork Music in May ‘09. Her last release Leaving Marshall St. was nominated for a Detroit Music Award for BEST ACOUSTIC/FOLK ALBUM in 2007 and made it to 9 on the independent roots music charts that year. The album also landed on a number of ‘Best of’ lists as well. Now, besides regionally touring and playing shows, Jen can also be found hosting the popular weekly open mic at Dagwood Tavern in Lansing. She has been host of the thriving scene for almost five years.

Jen is also in a band called Stella! with Jo Serrapere. Conceived by Serrapere (former member of Uncle Earl and award-winning songwriter), Stella! began working on a new album this spring in Brooklyn, NY under the supervision/patronage of Dave Marsh (Michigan native, co-founder of Creem Magazine and celebrated rock critic). The album is being produced by Adam Druckman with assistance from Larry Eagle (percussionist and background vocalist on Springsteen’s Seeger Sessions album) and primarily features the songwriting of both Jen and Jo. Stella! appeared live on Dave Marsh’s Sirius/XM show ‘Kick Out the Jams’ in April ’09. So Long Pollyanna was also spun during the show.

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