Music Review: Jackie Venson’s “Make Me Feel”

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I recently had the chance to listen to “Make Me Feel,” the new single by Austin-based guitarist/singer/songwriter Jackie Venson. The opening bars evoke a feeling of weightlessness: it’s easy to feel lost in the soothing mesh of electronic sounds, piano, and layered vocals. Venson’s expressive voice joins the blend to confirm that she is indeed in a wandering state: “Floating free in outer space, I’m always falling.”

The chorus kicks in with a simple phrase: “You make me feel so good.” With this invocation and a strike from Venson’s explosive guitar, a new feeling of sonic fidelity gives the listener a sense of assurance, making the message of the song clear: love has given meaning to a lost soul.

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The title of the song, “Make Me Feel,” is almost like a prayer or plea for a new life, and we know that the love Venson is singing about is beyond the realm of nature. The song fluctuates between outer space and solid ground, as love and life often do.

Like all of Venson’s work, “Make Me Feel” effectively blends genres, giving us flavors of rock, electronica, and R&B. There is even a taste of the literary to it; much as Seal’s first hit single “Crazy” brought rock, new wave, and R&B into the desolation of dystopian sci-fi, Venson is blasting us into the cosmos, hoping to make us feel good about the journey.

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