Jennifer Nettles wrapped the final verse of the final song on her new album, Always Like New, on the day Broadway closed its doors last March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While the Broadway stages now prepare to turn their lights back on in September, Jennifer’s fourth studio album was released today, June 25th, as we see a light at the end of the tunnel. “For this album to be able to put it out now, finally, as a celebration of musical theater that it is, to hopefully be able to wave that flag and get people excited for all the beauty that’s about to be on those stages again,” the songstress gushed in an EXCLUSIVE interview with HollywoodLife.
The album is a mix of Broadway classics like “Sit Down You’re Rockin’ the Boat” from Guys & Dolls, while also new favorites, such as “Wait For It” from Hamilton. “We definitely had a specific criteria that we wanted, in the sense of, we wanted to pay homage to the original compositions respectfully, while at the same time reimagining and rearranging the songs in a way that would allow them to be discovered anew and freshly by those who were already fans or for someone who has never heard them before but but could hear it and love it,” Jennifer explained of her and her collaborator Alex Lacamoire’s song choices. “And we wanted to make sure, obviously, that we had some current repertoire represented in terms of shows that were actually current and present now, not just the classics.”
While many fans know and love Jennifer as a member of the Grammy Award winning country duo Sugarland, the Georgia native actually grew up doing theater and has always been connected to the lights of Broadway. “The theme among singer-songwriter, country, and musical theater is storytelling,” she admitted. “All of these are stories, and all of them create characters.”
The “I Can Do Hard Things” singer continued, “Modern, popular music, pop music tends to skew very young and as such, the topics are typically puppy love, heartbreak, and that’s about it — because that’s definitely an important thing during that phase of life for people. That being said, singer-songwriter, country and musical theater is to explore a wide variety of storytelling and character.”
Always Like New is available now on all streaming services! Stay tuned for details on Jennifer’s upcoming performance schedule as stages begin to open up, again!