Actress Jen Lilley is balancing her day job with her lifelong passion of 1960’s girl groups to create a collection of timeless songs that is set to have a whole new generation singing along.
Below is her exclusive interview with TVGrapevine:
Tell me about your new single.
My debut single, “King of Hearts” is one chapter of an overall story the album tells about fleeting love, vulnerability, and empowerment. The song explores a relationship most of us have been in, whether romantic or platonic, where the other person is full of empty promises; just one big poker player, bluffing their way into your heart. The opening lyrics are, “Play with girls like you play with cards, build your hand ‘til you have them all, they should name you the King of Hearts, keep them in line waiting for your call.” The chorus swells to empower the listener to stand up, recognize they’re not alone, we’ve ALL been in a relationship like this, and move on in confidence, knowing that he or she is better off on his/her own. It was written and produced by Adrian Gurvitz, with lyrics by Sugar Jones and myself.
What inspired you to do it?
I’ve wanted to sing since I was a little girl, and when legendary writer and producer Adrian Gurvitz offered to work with me, I was thrilled. Adrian pulled out all the stops, delivering me the world’s best musicians and writers, and I am blown away with the end result. My goal for the album is fund a children’s village in California for orphans and children in foster care.
What inspires you as an artist?
Who are some of your musical influences?
Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Ella Fitzgerald, Dusty Springfield, the Ronettes, and Amy Winehouse.
Are you doing more music in the future?
Who are some people you want to work with in the music business?
Tony Bennett, Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, and Lauren Daigle.
Tell me about your new movie.
Mingle All the Way is a new networking app designed to pair busy professionals together for upcoming events, without long-term romance. Molly (my character), founder of the app, is determined to prove to her family that it is a success. To secure a major investment, she joins the app, and meets another busy professional, Jeff (Brant Daugherty). When Molly and Jeff are matched, they are both horrified to realize they’ve already had not one, but two disastrous previous encounters. Nevertheless, they agree to stay matched for all their respective upcoming holiday engagements. As the pair gets closer, perhaps their business arrangement might turn into something more this holiday season.
What is your role and what attracted you to it?
I play Molly. I was drawn to the role because I think it’s such a clever script, and I relate to Molly’s workaholic nature. Plus, I’m a sucker for rom-coms. Meg Ryan inspired me to become an actress, and I think this film is the epitome of a movie Ryan would thrive in when she was the reigning queen of romantic comedy.
What do you hope fans like about it?
What are some memorable moments of filming?
Brant and I have a hilarious and endearing ice-skating scene and our director Allan Harmon gave me full permission to bust out my physical comedy chops.
What else are you working on?
What’s a fun fact about yourself?
I’m a foster and adoptive parent.
What are you watching on tv these days?
Anything else you want to tell America?
100% of the proceeds from my debut single, album pre-sales and online merchandise is going to charity. This is music that’s empowering and bursting with feel good nostalgia, and it’s music that gives back just by listening to it.