Winnipeg singer and songwriter Jaylene Johnson has had her fair share of successes and setbacks in a career that has spanned over 10 years. The award-winning gospel artist recently suffered an intubation injury that damaged her vocal cords. Nevertheless, after a year and a half of surgeries, recovery, and childbirth, the 2011 Western Canadian Music Award nominee has released a new album, Potter and Clay.
Released on Oct. 7, Potter and Clay is a collection of 12 songs that highlight the ups and downs of a trying decade for an artist. The part-country, part-gospel album consists of songs of hope, pain, and gratitude and in many ways sound like prayers and confessions.
The album’s sound is a gentle blend of guitars and pianos that provide a sufficient backing for Johnson’s calming voice. Johnson sings her heart out with lyrics that showcase her faith and detail her experiences and resilience. In a unique way, the album tells her story or one closely related to hers.
Potter and Clay, which features Steve Bell and Joey Landreth, opens with the somber-sounding “Fallin,” a solemn cry for help, and ends on a cheerful note with “I Won’t Be Frightened Anymore,” an acapella that showcases Johnson’s vocal prowess. “Find Us,” which has garnered a lot of airplay on the radio since the album was released, is one of the best tracks on the album as it highlights – lyrically and musically – the album’s essence and themes of hope and resilience.
Following the release of her album, Johnson has been on a Western Canadian tour which will end with two dates in Winnipeg at North Kildonan Mennonite Brethren Church (1315 Gateway Road) on Nov. 16 and a house concert at 59 Deering Close on Nov. 19.
Potter and Clay is now available at www.jaylenejohnson.com, Hull’s Family Bookstore, Into the Music, Music Trader, St. Margaret’s, or Saint Benedict’s Table. For tickets to Jaylene Johnson’s final tour dates, visit www.jaylenejohnson.com