Performing 12/13 at The Reef & 12/20 at Taylor Junction
By Noe Gutierrez
There are enigmatic artists and then there are paradoxical ones. The ultimate of the outliers is Jesika von Rabbit. JvR is the desert’s kaleidoscopic mortal. Look through her lens and you will fall through the rabbit hole of artistic expression; the writing and performance of her music and the presentation of her visual concepts will mobilize you to join the ‘Jesikult’.
JvR recently performed two stimulating shows with ‘Retro Psychedelic Quality Boogie’ rockers Black Magic Flower Power at The Alibi in Palm Springs, CA and at Pour House in Oceanside, CA. If you missed her this year, you have two more opportunities before 2020.
With two special Coachella Valley and High Desert Christmas shows scheduled, JvR is ushering in the holiday season like only she can. First is Friday 12/13 at The Reef in Palm Springs, California with Jason Nutter and friends and one week later on Friday 12/20 at Taylor Junction in Joshua Tree for ‘A Very Deserty Christmas’ with JvR and friends.
Coachella Valley Weekly spoke with JvR to give us the holiday rundown.
CVW: You are celebrated for your visual concepts as well as your music and you seem to continuously stretch out of your artistic comfort zone. What are the next videos you’ll be releasing?
JvR: “I’m also sitting on a couple of other videos/singles. One is a duet with singer-songwriter Kirkpatrick Thomas of Los Angeles-based Psychedelic Rock group, Spindrift. We’re performing “Don’t Fence Me In” for a documentary that’s being produced about the life of Cole Porter.”
CVW: You’re also doing a fundraiser through your website jesikavonrabbit.com. Tell us about that.
JvR: “The fundraiser is called ‘Fund-a-bunny’ and it is meant to raise money to make a video for my popular and fun-loving dance anthem, “Dog at a Human Party.” People lose their minds when I play this song and I am itching to get it out there. There’s plenty of fun perks for people that contribute, such as advanced download, t-shirt, a chance to be in the music video and a performance at your private party!”
CVW: You’ve cultivated so much success in your career. How have you been able to actualize your goals since you started this JvR journey?
JvR: “Goals? Goals are a bit of a trap. I work hard when I’m inspired and follow the ‘white rabbit’. I feel like Americans put a lot of pressure on themselves to always be accomplishing something, which I am guilty of, and yes, it does make you feel good but when something doesn’t pan out it can also make you feel like a failure. As I get older, I see the importance of stopping to smell the roses and enjoying life. Life is meant to be enjoyed! I love performing, writing and shooting videos and will continue to, but also let myself off-the-hook for not meeting certain expectations put on myself in the past.”
CVW: Looking beyond, what’s more in store for JvR in 2020? Do you even plan that far ahead?
JvR: “More shows, more videos, more hijinks!”
CVW: You and Jason Nutter recently released a great ‘wide open space’ Americana song called “Joshua Tree” that was written, recorded, mixed and mastered at Melrose Music Palm Springs and Hollywood. The video is mysteriously conceptive too. Tell us about your musical bond with Jason?
JvR: “Jason is a really great human and our voices harmonize beautifully together. I helped arrange “Joshua Tree.” Jessica Janos shot the video and it just won ‘Best Music Video’ at the Yucca Valley Film Festival. When Jason asked me to collaborate, of course, I said yes without any grand expectations, but magic happened, and the song came out like a ‘Deserty Velvet Cake’!”
CVW: Will we see more joint efforts from you two?
JvR: “You can expect to see more collaborations from us in the future and we have two upcoming shows. We will be singing some Christmas songs, other covers and originals on Friday, Dec. 13th at The Reef in Palm Springs and on Friday, Dec. 20th at Taylor Junction in Joshua Tree.”
CVW: You have a new holiday video being released next week.
JvR: “I just shot a Christmas video by multi-award-winning director, writer producer Jessica Janos (Prettyface, Suburban Swingers Club, Seduced) for my cover of Elvis’s “Blue Christmas.” This is a trippy one with a psychedelic dreamscape, adorned with hand-selected and authentic Joshua Tree weirdos. I haven’t released a Christmas song/video since Gram Rabbit’s “California Christmas” in 2009 and it feels great to finally follow that up.”
This is no doubt an Elvis-approved, hip-shaking, hip-grinding version of “Blue Christmas.” Beginning with JvR’s seductive vocals then, like a magnet, the pulsating synths emanate, and after the first verse the beat kicks in with a clear-cut high-hat, snare and bass drum rhythm.
The optic scenery of blue hues exaggerates the mood of the title and the contrasting red and green laser lights behind the stunning JvR seem to symbolize the decorations on a Christmas tree. The bending “blue notes” constitute a musical play on words while JvR’s heavy-hearted vocals give a facelift to the Yuletide season as she sings about a tale of unrequited love during the holidays.
The Queen of the High Desert’s mid-song “Christmas Rap” seamlessly punctuates the Rock and Roll holiday classic made famous by The King.
Keep up to date on JvR at her website: www.jesikavonrabbit.com
Fri. 12/13 – Jesika von Rabbit w/ Jason Nutter & Friends – The Reef – Palm Springs, CA
Friday, 12/20 – ‘A Very Deserty Christmas’ – Jesika von Rabbit & Friends – Taylor Junction – Joshua Tree, CA