Jesse Maxwell isn’t the kind of artist to let the moss grow on previous material before he starts on his next set of tunes. Nor does the 26-year-old, Toronto-based songwriter, producer, and recording artist have any qualms about expanding on his signature brand of moody, neo-soul with each new effort.
Constant forward momentum is a key for Maxwell personally and musically; a way of remaining relevant, not only to his large online following but true to himself. “I’m a 0 or 100 person, but I’m on 100 most of the time so that momentum is really important to helping me feel that I’m being productive and growing.”
For Maxwell, changing up his approach and refining his sound constantly is core to his drive to release new material at what he admits is a fairly furious pace. By way of explanation, he says: “Music’s a big part of my sobriety. I have an addictive personality, but I try to channel that into healthier things, which,” he adds, laughing, “goes hand-in-hand with pushing out a shit ton of songs.”
Granted, the deep well of training and wide-ranging musical influences and experiences he draws on may have something to do with it as well. “My family is very into music,” Maxwell explains. “Everyone’s involved in music or played something.” Naturally, he gravitated towards music early on, studying classical piano and theory as a child, playing coffee houses in his teens, and ultimately moving to New York and joining a local blues band who put out the word that they needed a singer.
In just three years Jesse Maxwell has indeed gone from 0 to 100: racking up 1 million overall streams on Spotify; becoming a regular fixture on radio across Canada; making inroads internationally (via a #1 on the People’s Soul Choice Charts on the UK’s Delite Radio); and gaining a well-deserved reputation as a prolific, deeply lyrical storyteller and a distinctively compelling voice in modern soul.