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“AMBITION. You can’t temper it. It’s internally driven. It requires very little else to go somewhere great. It allows you to take disappointments in stride. It drives the trajectory of your life. It has no regard for impossibility. It’s a fierce, consuming hunger that demands fruition and satisfaction. When used for the greater good of humanity, it’s inevitable that remarkable things will happen.”
You know the feeling of refusing to do something you feel like you’re supposed to do? It is from
this place of resistance the song, “Irreverent,” came to be. After years of casually ignoring God’s
prompting to write faith-based songs, Christian-rock artist Jodi Essex is ready to answer it boldly
with her breakout single, “Irreverent,” set to release January 24, 2020; a fearless declaration,
this song invites listeners not to rebel against God’s calling, but rather to live for Christ in an
authentic way that is unapologetic to the world.
Jodi was born in the beautiful coastal town of Carmel located on the Monterey Peninsula in
Northern California. She took great interest in the performing arts as a youth. Jodi grew up as
regular soloist in her church and also helped lead worship for her youth group. Her first
recording studio experience was at the age of 12 where she recorded several cover songs of her
then-favorite Christian contemporary artists.
She began to segue into commercial acting and landed her first episodic role on Candid Camera.
Jodi continued to develop her vocal and performance skills which led to an interest in writing
her own music. Influenced by so many artists and sounds, she sought to find her own style. She
began focusing solely on a music career, playing and touring in two secular rock bands she
helped to form.
Years later, after finally heeding strong promptings from God and feeling led to share some
hard-learned life lessons and poignant, transformational experiences, she went back to her
faith-filled roots and decided to write and produce a faith-based album, aptly titled
- Worship Musician – Album Review – “It’s good to find a new rock album. It’s great to find one so melodic.”
- New Release Today – Album Feature – “…a Christian rocker who brings encouraging and honest messages to her passionate style of rock and roll music.” https://www.newreleasetoday.com/news_detail.php?newsid=4849
- The Rockpit – Album Review – “‘Irreverent’ is full of messages that are there for those that want to hear them but it’s also an album to enjoy if you aren’t of a religious nature and that the beauty of this collection of ten tracks. There is a nice blend of melodic & up-tempo songs which make for extremely enjoyable listening.”
- One Man In The Middle – Album Review – “She has a strong powerful voice that takes that hard edge required for rock, but also shows that softer gentler vocal on “Symphony”. The guitars on this album are just epic throughout and they are given time and space to really soar but never to the detriment of other things, drums and keys compliment brilliantly as well. In these tracks there are aspects of boldness of character, but also the vulnerability of mental health topics, proving that the two things aren’t mutually exclusive and that both can live alongside faith and fear when covered by grace and love. It is rare to find an artist in the Christian world that can openly sing about their faith and still be accepted by reviewers from a music, non-faith, background.”
- Effect Radio – July’s Artist of the Month
- Ai Love Music – Review – “Jodi Essex’s take on the iconic “God Bless the USA” is dynamic, striking, and inspiring. You feel the exhilarating spirit of the song’s message in each part of the songs: from the electrifying guitar to Jodi’s passionate vocals.”
- Louder Than The Music – Album Review – “There is a part of Jodi’s vocals that are all swagger, and then there is a part that is raw and honest, a hard mix for any vocalist to give…” – “This album balances between rock music, big power ballads and beautiful intimate songs like ‘Weightless’. At the heart of the album is a sense of passion and even fight. You can’t listen to this Jodi Essex album and not think “right, I can change this world”. But of course the biggest draw of the album is the vocals of Jodi – this lady can really sing, and she sings from the heart. And when someone does that then you know you’re onto a winner.”
- Music Speaks Louder – Album Review – “Irreverent” is part of a 10-song record that is both guitar-driven and melodic with lyrics that are forthright, yet introspective.”
- Take Effect Reviews – Album Review – “…Essex and company play with much energy and volume here, where an incendiary execution and thoughtful approach makes for a strong start to Essex’s musical career.”
- Today’s Christian Entertainment – Album Review – “…it’s pretty apparent from Jodi’s new record Irreverent that she’s here for the long run with her endearing, yet commanding vocals and of course the onslaught of guitar shredding that’s laced throughout the nearly 45 minute set.” – “Irreverent is truly a breath of fresh air and goes a long way in showing listeners that not only is rock music still alive and well, but the Rock of our lives still desires to connect with us despite the chaos surrounding us in this lost and broken world. While Jodi Essex may not be a household name (yet), the message of hope, love and reliance on God that Irreverent carries is sure to gain attention and not only highlight her immense talent, but her heart of wanting to reach the lost with the Gospel through her music and to let people know that Jesus is alive and well and is there for those who choose to seek Him.”
- The Vinyl Revivers – Album Review – “If you like searing guitar licks, hard thumping drums, softer insightful ballads, and the voice of a beautiful, confident women, singing her truth, then this album is for you.”
- Vacancy – Album Review – “In the most unsuspecting way, the lyrics pack a spiritual punch that beautifully reaches lovers of rock music and those who need an uplifting word.” “The album is fresh and gives a new spin to the Christian rock genre that merges the styles well with the message.”
- 100% Rock Magazine – Album Review – “Jodi’s unapologetic faith-based approach to music is woven into the lyrics without sacrificing the rock quotient of the song. The guitars are loud and on point while the rhythm section anchors the track under her vocals.”
- Positive Rock Review – Album Review – “…there is an undeniable modern quality to the performance and production that gives songs like the album’s title cut, “Irreverent”, a definite foothold in today’s rock world.”
- XNOIZZ – “Fighter” – May Chartbreaker Feature – “A truthful and honest artist with a great voice. This month her song ‘Fighter’ is the May Chartbreaker on XNOIZZ with Ben Smit in Holland. A more than gifted person with a blessed attitude. Gifted with an original sound, she will find her own space in Christian Music.” – Ben Smit, Programming Leader for ATOS RTV Network and the Program Producer for XNOIZZ
- Jesus Freak Hideout – “Irreverent” – Review – “Her debut single, “Irreverent,” is a hard rock song that hearkens back to the ‘80s rock and metal days of Joan Jett and Stryper, but with more of an updated sound and some cleaner production.” – “The song itself is fearless and full of attitude, as it draws inspiration from Essex’s life of rebellion; though, instead of spearheading rebellion toward God, “Irreverent” encourages the listener to rebel against the world and its Godless ways.”
- Vacancy – “What Is Your Truth” – Feature – “The song is about finding your true self and character. It’s a song that offers tough love but encourages listeners to look within themselves and to Christ.”
- Louder Than The Music – “Fighter” – Review – “There is a part of Jodi’s vocals that is all swagger, and then there is a part that is raw and honest…”
- Louder Than The Music – “Irreverent’ – Review – “This is classic rock at its best. Riffs, thumping drums, pounding bass and strong rock vocals and you have an amazing track.”
- “Essex believes in helping people — almost every event to which she attaches her name is a benefit — and has a good reason for supporting organizations that share her philosophy.” – Montery Herald
- “Love. It holds more value when given to others. For Jodi Essex, Campaign Manager for Champions of Hope – Man & Woman of The Year (MWOY), this belief is the currency behind her work with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).” -Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
- “The word ‘grounded’ not only describes Jodi Essex, it perhaps explains how she was able to battle her early health struggles, which eventually became the building blocks for leading a courageous life.” -Kimberly Horg
- New Release Today – “God Bless The USA” – Feature
- Rock N’ Load – “God Bless The USA” – Exclusive Video Premiere & News Feature
- The Leo Affects – “God Bless The USA” – Video Interview
- Today’s Christian Entertainment – “God Bless The USA” – Feature
- The Rockpit – “God Bless The USA” – News Feature
- Louder Than The Music – “God Bless The USA” – News Feature
- The Christian Beat – “God Bless The USA” – News Feature & Music Video Feature
- Jubilee Cast – “God Bless The USA” – News Feature
- Vacancy Magazine – “God Bless The USA” – Weekly Roundup
- Jesus Freak Hideout – “God Bless The USA” – News Feature
- Antimusic – “God Bless The USA” – Feature
- CCM Magazine – Album – Feature
- Hallels – Album – News Feature
- The Christian Beat – Album – Behind The Scenes Livestream Feature + Interview + News Feature
- Today’s Christian Entertainment – Album – Podcast Interview + Artist Sampler
- Rockby – Album – News Feature
- The Rockpit – Album – Interview
- Louder Than The Music – Album – Interview + News Feature + Album of the Week
- Jesus Wired – Album – News Feature
- Rock N’ Load – Album – News Feature
- The Vinyl Revivers – Album – Video Interview
- CCM Magazine – “Irreverent” – Exclusive Video Premiere + Artist Spotlight
- Rock N’ Load – “What Is Your Truth” – News Feature
- Antimusic – “What Is Your Truth” – Singled Out Feature
- Madness to Creation – “What Is Your Truth” – Interview
- The Christian Beat – “What Is Your Truth” – News Feature
- Hallels – “What Is Your Truth” – News Feature
- The Christian Beat – “Fighter” – Exclusive Video Premiere
- Louder Than The Music – “Fighter” – News Feature
- Hallels – “Symphony” – News Feature
- Free CCM – “Symphony” – Track Feature
- Jesus Freak Hideout – “Stand up” – Song Download
- Cross Rhythms – “Irreverent” – Song Feature
- The Christian Beat – “Irreverent” – News Feature
- Never For Nothing – “Irreverent” – News Feature
- Unrated Magazine – “Irreverent” – Interview
- Hallels – “Irreverent” – Interview + News Feature
- Rock Your Lyrics – “Irreverent” – News Feature
- Jesus Freak Hideout – “Irreverent” – Podcast
- 100% Rock Magazine – “Irreverent” – Interview
- Spot On Religion – News Feature
- Music Nation – News Feature
- Singer/Actress Jodi Essex sings and speaks about Voices for Children/CASA Monterey County Benefit Co – CLICK TO WATCH
“Irreverent” Radio Charts – #19 on USA Rock Radio Category Chart; #37 on Rock Top 40 (BIG BIG HIT, March 30, 2020)
The Marketing Mixtape
Whitney Asher, CEO & Publicist
D10 Consulting, LLC
David Saporta, CEO
Film & Television Talent Representation
Actors Talent Group
Fine Arts Building
410 S. Michigan Ave. Suite 733
Chicago, IL 60605
Agent: Maryann Ziesch, President
ADDITIONAL MUSIC VIDEOS
RELEASE DATE: July 10, 2020
One of my favorite songs lyrically, “Weightless” is both an expression of love, devotion and prayer in the form of an intimate, one-on-one conversation with God. It begins by describing the very real and personal spiritual battle between all the things that can inhibit our hearts and minds from being focused on a Christ-centered life, (“my ghosts return to haunt me, these demons unrelenting”). The conversation turns into a tone of unison that describes a pact of affirmation, reciprocating a love and loyalty between us and God, (“But I won’t let them in, you won’t let them win”). It’s an assuredness that can only be experienced and felt when we allow ourselves the surrender to the Holy Spirit. It is the redemption we seek and He unfailingly gives.
The song continues with examples of the human spirit conceivably living moments of darkness, “a barely-there existence” and yet the despair is always met with the unfailing love of Jesus at every turn, as He is “my breath, my air.” Being “weightless in your love” can only be described as the zenith of what a real love relationship with Jesus feels like. The epitome of agape love, salvation, redemption, kindness and empathy in their purest forms leave us feeling weightless, unburdened, white as snow and light as air, as we are enveloped by His grace. We are lifted up and restored infinitely to the joy He intended for our lives, despite the depths of darkness we may have suffered in our past transgressions, even in times we had turned from our Creator, as Psalm 70:20-21 says, “Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. You will increase my honor and comfort me once more.” And in perfect redemptive compassion, replies, “I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” As the songs nears to its end, I sing, “hold me close in the palm of your hand, dance of the senses in wide open spaces, I’m drifting away…” One last reminder that He is everything we need and everything we need can be found in Him. The load has been lifted, so to speak, and we are unbridled spirits, free and unburdened from all that weighs us down; feather-light in His love.
“What Is Your Truth“
RELEASE DATE: May 29, 2020
I wrote this song as a question-answer exploration of embracing human frailty within ourselves and others. The lyrics are rooted in a search for the real truth and the “why?” behind the difficulty of living authentically every day. Truth is defined by a source as “sincerity in action, character, and utterance.” That’s only part of it, an Earthly responsibility that belongs to us as the human race, as we choose how to govern ourselves. It’s also defined as, “the body of real things, events, facts, and statements,” to which I will reference John 14:6, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” As Christians, Jesus is truth and the Word; this is the foundation upon which we live our lives. Without Him at the center, we leave endless opportunities for other doctrine, principles and beliefs to take up that space in our minds and hearts. However, Jesus wants us to do the hard work and take responsibility for who we are. He wills us to be discerning over the decision-making in our lives. In becoming more Christ-like, we have to fine-tune our minds and dig deep into our hearts to work on overcoming our issues as children of God.
“What Is Your Truth?” starts out with the issue of “accountability” and someone who lives the narrative that nothing is ever their fault. They consistently displace blame onto others. While we’ve all had moments in our lives where we found it difficult to accept responsibility in something, we knew deep down there was an alternate truth to bear. The song also depicts a person with “chameleon” tendencies; someone who spends most of their energy putting on different faces for different people, all in the name of placating and pleasing others, whether or not what they speak is the truth. The damaging result of first not being true to oneself, is a behavioral cycle that starts to feel “like feeding you freedom” as I write in the chorus. Which by that, I mean when placing blame we should be owning up to, we’re creating relief (“freedom”) in ourselves of any guilt we may have, which also falsely preserves our sense of self-esteem by avoiding awareness of our own flaws or failings. That’s not true freedom. As I continue in the chorus, “the curse of your blame feels like bondage forever,” because the truth is as Jesus says in John 8:32, “Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” Living and being stuck in a type of emotional bondage from a life lacking real truth can feel like a curse. We are not free.
In both of the character examples in the song, honesty rarely exists, they don’t yet know what freedom feels like or the value of living a life of complete and pure truth. They live on a “stage” for all to see, yet nothing we see is often driven by truth. Every decision they make may be based on others’ acceptance of them. At the end of it all, “What Is Your Truth?” is an up front and forthright question we can all use to measure who we are and who we’ll become, to ourselves and in Christ.
I hope this song inspires people to really stop and look at themselves. Is there something about ourselves we want to change? Is that finger in the mirror pointing back at you? Do we need help facilitating change? We need truth in ourselves through Jesus. Whether it’s mending a struggle with self-love or turning inward to introspectively find a pattern or incident in our past keeping us in emotional bondage, “What Is Your Truth” is intended to bring light into our dark, and with a little tough love & honesty, set us on a path to emotional freedom by standing firm in truth.
RELEASE DATE: April 24, 2020
“Fighter” fearlessly declares itself a pre-battle anthem as we put on the armor of God to stand and deliver. We are to be bold in our actions, our voices, and our declaration that, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me,“ (Phil. 4:13). It calls us to rise up as a warrior in God’s army – without excuse. Fighter urges us to live a no-holds-barred, faith-filled existence, willing to venture into the den of the lions, go out into all the world and “take down the Giant.”
This song is without a doubt, an autobiographical piece and anthem, imploring others to be a warrior over his/her life. This is the fearless, bold person that we all strive or desire to be. This is the person that just doesn’t quit at anything, no matter how insurmountable life becomes and no matter the seemingly impossible obstacles staring them in the face; the person who speaks up for what they believe in even if they are socially persecuted for it. Forget failures, doubts, and tribulations. Fighter also talks about how failure and weakness can make you stronger with, “I’m stronger because I’ve been weak.” As followers, we are backed with the power of Jesus, just as Philippians 4:13 states, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” It’s to declare that God’s army is a powerful and strong, though being called a soldier for Him comes with adversity in following the path created for us. But we stand strong in defending his honor in the battle of spiritual warfare. Like everything we are blessed with and given by Him, we’ve made the decision to stand and deliver, put our hearts out there and fight. No excuses, no denying his presence. We’ve all been given free will to choose how we’re going to live our lives. Will it be meek and shameful? Will it be bold and fearless? The lyric, “I’ll take down the giant” leaves no debate here. He gives us everything we need to be the strongest warrior – for Him, for ourselves, and for our loved ones. With an unswayable faith, there is nothing we can’t do. Fighter. For all I believe in.
RELEASE DATE: March 27, 2020
Symphony is a beautiful & introspective ballad, with beckoning lyrics, and a peaceful orchestral arrangement. The music ebbs and flows throughout, winding up into soaring stringed instruments through to the end. It’s a storytelling experience mixed with autobiographical elements, scriptural references, & beautiful, fantasy-like visuals. The title is figurative and metaphorical. “Symphony” alludes to perfection and beauty in sound, sight, color, experience, time space, and love – God’s love.
My hope for people when they hear Symphony, is that the peacefulness and enveloping nature of it truly allows them to “hear” the beautiful and everlasting message of unconditional love woven throughout. I want people to feel at peace with their past, grateful for their present, and hopeful for their future. We all sometimes forget just how miraculous our lives are given to us by God! It’s the ability to see things through fresh eyes, not a biased conditioning over time; looking upon something or someone for the first, awe-inspiring time. There are discoveries being made! Babies being born! Accomplishments to celebrate! The first blossoms of Spring! People coming to Christ on fire for the first time! It sings out of renewal, of God’s spirit washing us white as snow. I want this song to bring a focused centering of love to people – first to Jesus as their highest; then to themselves and to all their relationship with others. We all need reminding of how to live and love in a Christ-like manner. This song is a prompting to discover and re-discover the beauty in all the questions and answers…for as long as it takes.
RELEASE DATE: February 21, 2020
“Stand Up” acknowledges and empathizes that life is full of immeasurable disappointments. Yet somehow in the midst of it all, the song affirms we all have something valuable inside ourselves to reach for planted by God. It speaks of a rough-and-tumble existence but reminds us when we call upon Him to lift us up and out of our worst despair, we take ownership of where we are, there will be salvation and the most amazing diehard example of grace. Be moved to “get up, stand up, and RISE.”
When people hear Stand Up, I want them to feel like they’ve won! It doesn’t matter at what, but just that they are winners. They conquered by their own hand and the grace of God! I want people to feel inspired to keep moving forward in their lives no matter what their past looks like, or how intimidating their future may seem. I want this song to be a driving force for them, when they feel like they’re weary and running on empty; a reminder that everything we need, everything we have to be our best, strongest, formidable selves lies within, through Him. I feel like this song could also serve as a catalyst for real, authentic change in someone’s life. Maybe someone has been debating about a change they want or need to make. Maybe someone has found themselves in a stagnant rut, rendering them hopeless with no direction. Remember: “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, surely I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” That’s as good a reason as any, so I want everyone to feel like they can, know they can, and then just do it – STAND UP!
RELEASE DATE: January 24, 2020
You know the feeling of refusing to do something you feel like you’re supposed to do? It is from this place of resistance the song, “Irreverent,” came to be. After years of casually ignoring God’s prompting to write faith-based music, Christian-rock artist Jodi Essex is ready to answer it boldly with her breakout single, “Irreverent,” set to release January 24, 2020. A fearless declaration, this song invites listeners not to rebel against God’s calling, but rather to live for Christ in an authentic way that is unapologetic to the world.
”Irreverent is the spirit in which this album was written and put out there for all to hear,” Jodi says. “It’s reveling in a rebel spirit, being fearless, courageous and bold enough to die to yourself every day, furthering the purposes of God.”
Written and recorded at Uphill Studios in Atlanta, GA alongside Studio Owner, Producer and Drummer Sean Hill (Jamie Grace, Clay Crosse, Landry Cantrell), “Irreverent” is part of a 10-song record that is both guitar-driven and melodic with lyrics that are forthright, yet introspective. Backed by an experienced team of musicians, the single features guitarist and bassist Jadan Sorenson (Angie Stone, Montell Jordan, Crystal Nicole, Sounds of Blackness, Bucky Covington), Pablo Melgar – Keys (touring with FRVR FREE; previously with New Song, Passion, Jesus Culture), Josh Smith (Strings), Jon-Paul Keller – Background Vocals (David and Nicole Binion, BJ Putnam). It was mixed by Sean Hill and mastered by Bob Boyd (Ambient Digital, LLC).
Although Jodi has been a Christian her entire life, “Irreverent” highlights something she has experienced for years; through her work in entertainment, which included television, film and the pursuit of a more-secular music career, Jodi has felt like her heart and purpose weren’t always in the right place. As doors have opened and closed, Jodi’s music journey has been marked by moments she’s felt God saying, “It doesn’t matter; trust me and my plan for your life.”
With continued confidence in what God is capable of doing in and through her, Jodi wants listeners to share a sense of empowerment for who they are in Christ through “Irreverent.” By rejecting the fear of what others might say, she hopes this song will be a rockin’ way to worship, whether you’re dressed-up in your Sunday best or a leather jacket with ripped jeans.
“There are NO rules about how worship should look, sound or inspire!” Jodi exclaims. “Not everyone will accept, like, or love you. You have to get beyond that with self-acceptance and focus on purposeful importance. You’ve gotta do what’s in your heart…be you, be your authentic self…the way Christ intended you to be.”