Singer-songwriter Jack Rose explains why he is ‘Better on my Own’

Image Courtesy of Owen James Vincent

By Jake Yates-Hart

Jack Rose from Ashford, Kent had no idea what the future had in store for him when he launched his own YouTube channel in 2014, covering popular songs from Kanye West to Ed Sheeran. Now at 19-years-old, Jack has gained a large fanbase, having released multiple singles, including a music video for his latest track, Better on my Own.

I recently had the pleasure to interview Jack over Zoom, where we discussed everything from how he joined the music business in the first place, to even his encounters with the supernatural.

Jack, who had been performing music since he was 13, has also played at over 250 live shows. His first ever live event was for a competition at Her Majesty’s Theatre, London, which he won. Even though he was only 13, on stage in front of around 3000 people, Jack still enjoyed every bit of the experience.

“It was scary, but I was also in front of people I had performed in front of before,” Jack said, “But it was a great experience, especially at such a young age.”

He eventually began writing his own music with a family friend after his covers started gaining recognition. In 2016, he released his first ever single that he wrote himself, Pretty Pictures.

“After I released Pretty Pictures, I realised I needed to start writing more music,” Jack said, “I started performing for fun at first, and now it’s my job, and I love it.”

On the topic of his latest hit, we discussed the inspiration behind Better on my Own; the song, which was produced in collaboration with SK, and combines R&B and pop, is about walking away from a situation that’s become toxic and unhealthy.

“Although it’s predominantly about an ex of mine, it’s also about unhealthy friendships too,” Jack explained, “Everyone can relate to breaking away from something toxic.”

With Better on my Own, Jack found the writing and recording process particularly difficult due to the pandemic limiting his ability to produce music in the studio. To Jack, the studio was his second home, and missed the communal spirit of writing and recording music with different producers.

“I love sitting in there, writing and recording, even if it’s by myself. It’s one of the most enjoyable things to do.”

Fans’ reactions to Better on my Own have been overwhelmingly positive, with over 84,000 views on YouTube at the current time of writing this. This is a huge achievement for Jack, who is still new to the music industry.

“It’s so nice that people actually want to listen to my music,” Jack said, “That makes me feel like I've actually achieved something.”

This year, Jack had been touring the UK with Boys on the Block, which includes four of the biggest pop stars of the 90s and early 2000s. However, they were only three quarters through the tour when they were told that it was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Jack also was due to perform at the Spectrum Festival in April, a festival aimed to create awareness around autism.

Like many people under lockdown who work in the entertainment industry, Jack misses performing in front of an audience. Still, he found ways to stay productive during the summer. He continued writing new singles and pursuing his music promotion business, Got PR. But after nearly nine (yes, nine!) months since lockdown was first implemented, Jack is craving to be back on stage again.

“I haven’t even held a microphone for so long,” Jack said, “I keep saying to everyone, that I want to get out there, and do shows. I miss performing.”

Alongside music, Jack has branched into other entertainment, adding to his already extensive and impressive resume. At 16, Jack began hosting his own Amazon TV series, wherein he investigates some of the UK’s most haunted locations along with a celebrity guest.

Similar to how he worked his way into the music industry, Jack had begun uploading his ghost hunting exploits on YouTube originally for fun. The videos caught the attention of Nick Groff, a paranormal investigator and co-host of the reality series Ghost Adventures, who wanted to put Jack’s YouTube show on his network.

Soon enough, Amazon Prime got in contact with him too, asking if they could produce a series, and Ghost Hunting with Jack Rose was born. In Ghost Hunting, Jack, along with a special guest (Gogglebox’s Sandi Bogle, artist Nathan Grisdale) visits some of the most haunted locations in Britain in search for the paranormal.

Unfortunately, the pandemic also put a stop to producing more episodes, but Jack and his crew are still hoping to book locations once lockdown measures have eased.

It’s impressive that at 19-years-old, Jack has been able to build up an impressive portfolio in music and television. For Jack, he sees at least part of his success comes from how supportive his family is. His aspiration to become a musician, surprisingly, came from his sisters ‘forcing’ him to watch High School Musical when he was younger.

“They didn’t give me the choice to watch it,” he continued, laughing, “But I’m thankful that they did because that’s what inspired me.”

Without the help of his family, Jack believes he, ‘would’ve gone about this whole music career thing the wrong way.’

“I can’t put into words how thankful I am to my parents for supporting me,” he continued, “I know there’s hundreds of families out there that may not support their child’s dream, which is really upsetting.”

He may look back to the past to inspire his music, but Jack would rather live in the moment than wonder what his future will be. With each single he writes, Jack is trying to make a statement, that he is taking his music seriously and trying to find his sound.

“I can’t really define what I’m doing music wise, I’m just trying to take it up another step each time I write something new.”, he explains.

Although Jack refuses to set anything in stone in what type of music he wants to perform, he did briefly discuss a new song he is working on. His next single will focus on his attraction to a woman he met in nightclub, and how much he wants to bring her home with him. The song is likely to be another diverge from his usual style of kick-back R&B, exploring more passionate and sexual topics. It’s an example of Jack not just maturing as an artist, but as a person, too.

When asked where he sees himself in the next five years or so, well, Jack has no idea - and he’s completely fine with that.

“Anything can happen in the next year or so,” Jack said, as we concluded our interview, “2020 has shown that everything can change.”

Jack’s an optimist at heart and isn’t too worried about what the future has in store for him. It seems likely, if we consider his accomplishments the last five years, Jack will find more success, especially if and when he discovers his sound.

Jack Rose’s discography is available on Spotify, iTunes and YouTube.

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First published in 1965, InQuire is the University of Kent student newspaper.

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