If you live in the Philadelphia area and are a fan of going to see live music, whether it’s an acoustic show or the cover band circuit, odds are you have probably heard of Courtney Jansen and her party band, Gypsy Wisdom. Philadelphia is filled with talented musicians, bursting at the seams. But Jansen is squeezing her way in, making her mark by taking her solo original career upward.
Her debut EP, Closer to Eden, took a passionate nine months to write and record. As Courtney joked, the same amount of time a baby is in the womb. This EP is Jansen’s baby. Speaking to her, I learned one of the things she hopes people take from listening to her music is that they walk away feeling like they really do love themselves. “I want my audience to know that I have been there and life does get better,” says Jansen.
While Jansen is always upbeat, outgoing and happy it was nice to see that she is just human and has the same struggles so many people have. When I spoke with Jansen on a night in May when she performed at the Trocadero, she told me how nervous she was, though she performs all the time. If she never would have told me about her nerves, though, I wouldn’t have known. She didn’t look the least bit nervous on that stage! As a matter of fact, I can honestly say that when Jansen steps on a stage, she owns it. From her first song to her last, she knows how to entertain a crowd.
At the Trocadero that night, Jansen brought her husband on stage to perform a song they wrote together. While they told the crowd it was not quite finished yet, the song still gained tons of applause after. Sure, the audience could have just been polite, but Jansen’s raw talent and determination leads me to believe otherwise.
As she tells me, “I felt the time was right to really try and get my original music out there.” Though her debut release is an EP, Jansen does have plans to record and perform more as a solo artist. Currently, she plays in a cover band with her husband called Gypsy
“Music, in general, is cleansing whether it’s easy or hard,” she explains. “Those moments of where I was and who I am now is what I love about music”.
Until you can catch Courtney Jansen’s solo act, go out and have some fun with the entire Gypsy Wisdom band. They’re not back in Philly until July 27th at Finnegan’s Wake, but we know you’re making a trip to the beach soon. And if you are, you can find GW all over the Jersey shore- Sea Isle, Avalon, Atlantic City, Ocean City- practically every day until they return to the city.