Northbrook-native pop singer JORDY insists he isn’t playing favorites including the song for his sister — “Becky’s Brother” — on his upcoming full-length album “BOY,” due out April 21.
“I do have an older brother. I sent him the song and I was like ‘You’re getting yours at some point, I promise,'” he joked.
With the heartfelt track, he acknowledges his younger sister’s feelings growing up in his shadow, being known throughout high school as “Jordy’s sister.”
“I understand that wholeheartedly. I can only imagine how that must feel,” he said. “As she told me that I was like, ‘No, I totally understand that and I validate that. And I want you to know that if I died being known as your brother, I would die a happy man.”
The track is one of many on the album showing the singer growing into a newfound sense of himself as an artist while keeping an eye toward the effects the ripples he creates have on the people around him.
With slots at last summer’s Lollapalooza, a growing national fan base and his recent GLAAD Media Awards nomination in the Outstanding Breakthrough Music Artist category (to be announced at the New York gala Saturday, May 13), those ripples just keep getting larger.
“It’s so crazy because as an artist, your mind plays such tricks on you,” JORDY said. “You can be growing, but your brain is still telling you that you’re not where you should be. And I think that’s been such an interesting journey for me over the past year, because when I actually look back and make a list of all of the goals that we have reached and all of the ways we have expanded, it’s crazy.”
While last summer’s Lollapalooza performances were a thrilling checkmark on JORDY’s list of goals — a huge step for a regular attendee to take the festival stage — the annual music fest also factors into the lyrics and strong feelings he manifests in “Love You and Let You Go,” a recent single release from the full-length. In the powerful track, he shares moments from a long-term relationship that ended (but didn’t truly end) when he first moved out to L.A. to pursue music a few years back.
“My argument is I can love you and let you go but still hold pieces of my past that were important to me, that helped make me who I am today,” he said. “And I don’t think I need to suddenly not love you anymore for me to move on with my life. I think that there’s a lot of room in these hearts we have, and I will always hold a little space for him.”
While part of JORDY’s draw is his vulnerability and specificity in his lyrics, presenting real feelings and inviting listeners to poke around in his world — “It’s always a therapy session,” he joked — “BOY” isn’t all heartfelt tributes and poetic musings. His previously released single “IDK (expletive)” pokes fun at the baffling nature of adulthood; “Hypothetical Party” is a charming take on his own social anxieties and introversion; “Backseat Driver” wittily twists third-wheel syndrome; and “Story of a Boy” is an LGBTQ-friendly riff on Nine Day’s 2000 smash “Absolutely (Story of a Girl).” There’s heart and emotion throughout, and he traverses it all while still celebrating the upbeat pop spirit in which he steeps his music.
“I felt such growing pains that you feel when you get older. Learning to really find who you are as an adult for me has meant really digging into my inner child experiences and figuring out why I feel the way I feel, why I behave the way I do,” he explained. “And all of these songs together are songs that came from that inner child but also are songs for that inner child.”
As summer music season starts closing in, JORDY and his team have big performance plans on the horizon. But for now, he’s focused on next week’s release and the upcoming GLAAD ceremony.
“I see the other artists in the category and my impostor syndrome shoots up,” he said. “To be in a category with these other artists who inspire me and who I reference in my writing sessions is so crazy. I’m just excited and honored to be a part of it. And to be recognized by an organization like GLAAD is so humbling.
“It’s been a great year already, and I’m just excited to see what else the rest of this year holds,” he added.
Maybe even that song he promised big brother Joey.