Jess Pillay: singer. songwriter. storyteller.
Introspective singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Jess Pillay will immediately entice fans of Rachael Yamagata, Norah Jones, and Missy Higgins.
Known for her soulful alto voice and lyrically-driven songwriting style, Jess Pillay’s songs often wrestle with themes like faith, doubt, hope, loss, and the ever-changing, messy nature of relationships.
Born and raised in North Seattle by Indo-Fijian parents, Jess was exposed to a complex array of musical influences. Engaging with everything from church worship music, to a capella choir, to Bollywood, to Seattle rock and folk, Jess knew at a young age that music was her life’s ultimate calling.
Throughout her life, she has been involved with a variety of group and independent music projects. Jess is a formally trained singer, pianist, and guitarist who studied music throughout school, and she holds a minor in music from a Seattle-area liberal arts university.
Her strong songwriting skills are also thanks to her love of language. In addition to her musical training, Jess holds a bachelor of arts in English. Her favorite authors are J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Ray Bradbury, and Anne Lamott.
Her most recent single If You’re There featuring Kyle Turver exemplifies Jess’ ability to write simple, yet powerful compositions. With soft harmonies and hopeful, yet melancholic lyrics reminiscent of Damien Rice, the song gently dives into the intimate intricacies of self-doubt and struggles with faith.
Besides singing, writing, and performing in the Pacific Northwest, Jess enjoys seeing live music, painting, and curling up on the couch with a good book. She is currently working on her first EP, which is being produced by Derik Nelson, and will feature piano-driven fan favorites like Stained Glass and Figure This Out and some brand new originals.