Why Jewel Made Me A Better Songwriter.

Between the years, 1995 and 1999 my sister Amanda listen to a singer named Jewel. Her music was heard on repeat in her bedroom, constantly. Over and over again. My sister had two albums that she went back and forth on: Pieces of You and Spirit. Over and over again. Jewel was defiantly my sisters favorite artist, and I was fortunate to listen to her music over and over. Did I say my sister played Jewel, like a lot?

I had a stereo in my bedroom. I played lots of Springsteen, Supertramp, and Mellencamp when I was young. All have amazing songwriting talent. But for some reason I feel Jewel’s songs resonated with my songwriting.

My sisters stereo was louder than mine. So we would end up having battles over who can listen to who’s music. Her speakers were so much louder I could have my door closed, and Jewel would still sing about her hands in my bedroom.

I hated Jewel. I really did! Her voice started to annoy me so much I would hide her albums. In a closet, in my bedroom, and even once I hid her cd in my sisters laundry hoping my mother would discard it through the wash. Somehow Amanda always ended up getting the both albums back.

Eventually, some of the songs grew on me. It infuriated me. How could this girl, sing about girl things, and I start to relate to it? My hands started to look smaller… I had to do something.

Jewels album Spirit, the one with the song “Hands” on it had to go. I grabbed a kitchen knife and scratch the cd like a cat in water.

One down, one to go. Amanda found the cd and went ballistic. Crying and telling my mom and dad what I did. I was punished. Getting rid of Pieces of You was going to be harder to destroy since my sister expects me now.

A few weeks would have passed in any normal family, and in a normal family the brother would have quietly taken the cd away. Not in my family. Within hours, I took the remaining Jewel album outside and placed softly our pond. About 40 feet out with no to minimal splash.

I was pretty much the worst brother ever for awhile.

But now, 17 plus years later I looked back onto both Jewel records and find so many similarities it makes me feel terrible. The amount of dislike I had at that time for those songs my sister listened to is similar to my hate for doing taxes now.

So whether I like it or not. Jewel is one of the best songwriters ever and unwillingly her passion and emotions she puts into her songs rubbed off on me.

Thanks to my sister Amanda. I may jump into our pond and get the cd out, wait no … I can afford to buy it now.

A bigger thank you to Jewel. If I ever write a song and I win an award for writing that song, I won’t leave you out of my thank you notes, but I will leave your album in our pond.

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