L-Fest Interviews. Backstage with the beautiful Jes Stretton

Hi Jes, what a great show! How did you find playing today? 

It was lovely, really lovely. I tried one of my new tracks. 

Oh yeah, how was that? 

Yeah good, really good. I was exciting to do that as well so i left it till the last one. 

Creative a bit of atmosphere, get the crowd all excited. What do you like most about performing live? 

People's reactions to my lyrics and some of the songs I really concentrate when I'm writing and to make them meaningful and to  mean something. And sometimes when i through little one liners and i see the reactions and I'm like YES! You know, that one worked. And always after, I always invite people to come over and I gave out some free EP's today basically because I like talking to people and seeing their reactions to the things that I have done. .

Do you look for people tapping their feet? 

Yeah! I like to look for people singing along and I'm like BRILLIANT. Yes, that's always amazing when there is someone sat in the audience singing along. 

Yeah I can imagine you thinking, ah you've listened to  my song quite a few times to know the words. Yeah that's amazing, it must be quite daunting performing on stage, because anything could happen. 

Yeah it can, but I don't really think about that side of things, because I've been doing it quite a long time. I gig every weekend. So I can see when something might happen. 

What kind of crowd do you prefer to play to? 

A lively crowd.

Oh yeah? 

It was quite chilled out today, which is something which I'm not quite used to. So I had to tame myself down a bit as sometimes I go a bit crazy and I'm dancing all over. But I behaved today. 

Totally, you kind of have to feel what the crowd are feeling right? 

Yeah and that was very chilled out. 

Is this your first L-Fest? 

Yes it is! I was just saying earlier that I didn't know what to expect. I didn't really have any expectations in my mind. 

When you think about a load of lesbians in a field together, anything can happen!

Literally, but yeah the vibe as soon as we drove in, I was like yeah, this is really cool. I haven't had a proper look around yet. 

Are you staying over? 

No, not staying, I once when camping in October and had a really bad experience so it's put me off. 

Why on earth would you go camping in October? 

No idea, but it was that windy it broke the tent poles and we had to sleep in the car and the tent was completely ruined. It was really bad. 

My god, that's tragic. No wonder you aren't camping! What do you think is the most rewarding thing about playing music? 

Oh I don't really know. You've got me there with that one because it might be something that I've already said. It might be that people want to hear more music and they are genuinely interested in me and what I do. At the end of the day, I'm just Jess and the fact that people are coming to see me, and coming out to different gigs, and following what I'm up to, is crazy. 

Do you think it's because your fans are in it with you? 

Yeah, like they're on the journey with me and the more people that join as time goes by is just amazing. 

When you write music, do you have to be in a certain mood or place? 

Actually yeah I do. This is kinda dangerous but I when I'm in the car I'll just record an idea. What I think it is, is that there is nothing around me and I just have to concentrate on the road so when I'm driving, ideas just flow. 

If you weren't singing what do think you would be doing

I really don't know, I don't think I could answer that because there is nothing else I would want to do. I do a bit of work with people who have different types of disabilities. I'm also a diversity role model, we travel to different schools and we tell stories about how we grew up and it's really not that different, and it's ok.

That's brilliant! You must be making such a difference! 

Yeah everybody just listens and they're fascinated by it all really.

Its real life isn't. It's so much easier to relate to an actual human being who is telling you it is ok to be gay. It's all about education. You recently got married, congratulations by the way! Is your wife here today? 

Yeah she is, she did all her usual jobs, taking photos and videos for my Instagram! 

Does she come to all your shows? 

Yes she does, all my original gigs she does. 

Ah brilliant, how did you guys meet? 

At Manchester Pride, through a friend about 7 years ago! 

That's really cute, talking about meeting people- I've never seen so many lesbians in one place! L-Fest surely has brought the UK population of lesbians all to one field! 

You know what I haven't actually been around and checked it out yet! 

Well go, it is amazing. Thank you so much for your time to do this. Your gig was great! 

Thank you!