Name: Adam Bernard Home: Fairfield, Connecticut, United States About Me: Entertainment journalist with 15+ years of experience. Supporter of indie music. Lover of day baseball, fringe movies, & chicken shawarma. Part time ninja. Nerdy, but awesome. See my complete profile
New York City singer-songwriter Jodi Good figured out at a very young age that she was a little different. She came to the realization in the fourth grade during her school’s picture day. “I brought in a doll to take a picture with,” she remembers, “and everyone (else) is trying to be all grown up, and they start getting pocketbooks, and I have like a Cabbage patch doll in my picture.”
After seeing all the class pictures, Good says, “I was just like, oh shit, I’m really weird.”
Her peers rejected the way she stood out, but Good rejected the idea of trying to fit in. This led to quite a few years of being made fun of, but when Good entered Berklee College of Music she found some kindred spirits. She notes, “If you’re not weird there, you’re weird.”
It was a turning point in Good’s life, as being at Berklee allowed her to embrace her differences. According to Good, pop radio has also been a big inspiration in that department.
“I'll never forget when I heard Katy Perry’s ‘I Kissed a Girl,’” Good remembers, “I was in the car with my mom, and it was actually a few months after I had told her that I was bisexual, and I was like ‘see mom, see, it’s not a big deal, it’s on the radio.’ Then when Lady Gaga came out with ‘Born This Way,’ I was like this is who I am, this is what I have to do. All these people that felt oppressed, and felt different, they’re all artists. I’m an artist, and I need to do this, and be free.”
Good, who says she, at some point, would love to date Ke$ha, and hang out with Amanda Bynes (with the caveat of as long as Bynes’ actions are really just an act), has made good on her initial career goal for herself, as her debut EP, Definitely Different, hit retailers on July 30th. The album represents Good’s even larger goal of inspiring people to be true to themselves. She explains, “We're all better, and we all accomplish more, when we love ourselves, and accept ourselves, because when we try to be other people, and try to hide who we are, we’re not reaching our full potential, and if we’re not reaching our full potential we’re not doing what we’re here to do, and potentially making the difference that we can make. So I want people to know, as long as they’re not hurting anybody, or hurting themselves, own it, it’s OK, do your thing.”
Definitely Different is filled with more than just inspiration, it’s a very personal project for Good, who wrote the album after a bad breakup. The emotional aspects of it are what Good hopes connect most with listeners, as she says, “I want other people to feel like wow, she said what I feel. She wasn’t afraid to be completely weak, to be completely honest. It doesn’t mean she’s a weak person just because she’s vulnerable. It doesn’t mean you’re gonna die if you feel this way. You can overcome it. You just gotta keep pushing.”
Good has been pushing hard when it comes her career, and one aspect of that push has been a weekly posting of a cover song on her YouTube page. The artists she’s covered range from Bruno Mars, to Kacey Musgraves, to The Pretty Reckless. Her lone requirement is that she has to feel a connection with the lyrics, as Good says she’ll cover a song only “If it’s a message that I can really relate to.”
Her original work on Definitely Different includes material Good feels just about anyone can relate to. She says that although she knows girls will easily be able to sympathize with the bad breakup aspect of the album, “The song ‘Stranger To Me,’ anyone that’s ever gone through any sort of breakup can relate to (it), and ‘Definitely Different,’ I feel that anyone that feels different can relate to.”
Earlier this year Good found a completely different crowd she related to when she performed at the Sundance Film Festival. She describes the experience as “awesome,” adding, “the whole town was filled with artists, like overflowing this energy. I couldn’t get enough. You couldn’t walk out without being surrounded by creativity, and that’s what I want my life to be. I was there for five days. I wish I could have lived there and kept all those people there.”
While Good was inspired at Sundance, she continues to spread that inspiration with Definitely Different, which stands as a reminder that different is beautiful, and you shouldn’t be afraid to grab a Cabbage patch doll when everyone else is picking up a purse.
B-Listers are a select group of artists that were featured in my Artist Of The Week series that ran every Monday from April of '06 to April of '11. All of these artists have two things in common; extreme talent, and a flight path far too under the radar for my liking. They took on the title of B-Listers as they embraced being featured by me, Adam B. Check out the AOTW Archives for all the interviews.