Avenir hearts Joy Mumford
Zimbabwean born, Joy Zola Mumford is a name you’ll be
hearing in 2014. With a summer spent gigging at her hometown in Nottingham and
at music festivals, Mumford is determined to make a name for herself in the
music industry. The 20year old singer/songwriter has finally realised her
anticipated EP Cake &Tea.
AVENIR: What made you decide to pursue a career in music?
JOY: If I’m honest, probably S Club 7. I believed they were the coolest humans on the planet and completely adored everything about them as a child. Aside from that, I loved writing poetry and reading. I learned to play piano when I was 7, and later realised I could put my own words to music in a similar way the artists I listened to did. Expressing myself through writing and singing became my safe place.
AVENIR: The music industry isn’t as glamorous as it seems, have you ever experienced a hard time with record labels, management, etc.?
JOY: My eyes have been opened to different characters, agendas, and the reality of it of the music business. It’s such an important thing to have a thick skin in any industry that mixes art, business and entertainment. At the end of the day music may be my passion, but it’s important to be aware that to someone else watching, it’s purely business. The reality is a lot of people are assessing your situation thinking, ‘Will this person make me money? Should I bother investing in them? Will they fail or last?’ That’s why it’s important to know what you want, enjoy working hard, and initially have good familiar people around you who have your best interest at heart.
AVENIR: With a stardom name like Joy Mumford, you must get a lot of people asking if you are related to or have any connections with Mumford and sons?
JOY: I have been asked that quite a lot actually! My sister got to meet Marcus Mumford at a gig just because someone found out they had the same last name. The thing is, she didn’t actually know who he was at time. I couldn’t believe it. (The experience was wasted on the wrong sibling!)
AVENIR: Have you ever auditioned or thought about auditioning for a TV music competition? What are your thoughts on shows like The Voice and X Factor?
JOY: I have auditioned for couple of things in the past when I was younger. Everyone’s path is different, but I’ve personally found the D.I.Y side of things has made me appreciative of my journey and growth as an artist. My view is that if you’re truly passionate about music you’ll find a way to do it, even when your plan C doesn’t work out. It makes me sad when I see people on talent shows that feel like their world will fall apart if they don’t get through to the next stage, or it’s their ‘last chance’. Talent shows can be good stepping stone for certain people, but I don’t think it’s healthy to run after a quick fix to fame. The most liberating thing as a music artist is having the opportunity to dictate what message you want to put across, your style and attitude - rather than have a team of people create that for you.
AVENIR: What artists, people, or places inspire you?
JOY: I LOVE being surrounded by nature. I live at the edge of a city which is perfect as I can literally jump in the car, and in 5 minutes I’m surrounded by trees. There’s something inspiring about taking time out from the busyness of life to go write somewhere quiet, calm and simple – it’s like two different worlds! I also love going to church. My beliefs, faith, and general life provide the basis for a majority of my lyrical inspiration. Music wise, I’ve always looked up to females who write their own lyrics.
AVENIR: What has been you highlight in your career so far?
JOY: This was my first year I played at some festivals away from home. Magic Summer Live in Surrey was amazing. Not long after playing, my band and I casually got to see Joss Stone, Beverly Knight and Jamiroquai perform. (We went slightly mental.) Playing at Barn on The Farm Festival was also incredible.
I also finally released my first EP ‘Cake& Tea’! You can download it for free on my Bandcamp page.
MISS A gets personal with Joy
A Who would you rather dine with, Mumford and sons, Lilly Allen or Sade?
A The one that got away….
J The Cake I didn’t finish at lunch because I was full – I regret that big time.
A Favourite character from a Disney Movie?
J I know it’s Disney Pixar, but I completely adore Boo from Monsters Inc.
A One thing that makes you sad?….
J The thought of not attempting to purse my dreams.
A One thing that makes you laugh?…
J Google: cat’s wearing tights.
www.joymumfordmusic.bandcamp.com – free downloads
Joy’s lifestyle blog www.lullabiesandcandy.blogspot.co.uk
November 20th – Nottingham Contemporary
November 25th – The Lacehouse – Nottingham
December 20th – Christmas party at Jam Café - Nottingham