jess higgs
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jess higgs

Band Pop Singer/Songwriter


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Desley Corbett

FOLLOWING a string of gigs along the peninsula, northern beaches singer-songwriter, Jess Higgs, will perform Ôunplugged' at Newport restaurant and bar, DISH, on Wednesday, July 20.
With a voice and performance that draws audiences in like a magnet, this contemporary artist will entertain you with original songs that are a blend of blues roots and soul with jazz overtones.
The talented 15-year-old has played several festivals, private functions and gigs with her band, but will perform at DISH in intimate mode with guitarist, Rob Rogers.
Rob is a professional musician, who in the Ô70s, played with guys that went on to form bands like Midnight Oil and Moving Pictures. He has been writing advertising jingles, soundtracks and scores for live shows for most of his musical career and teamed up with Jess in November 2003.
Jess Higgs won the Music and Arts Talent Search awards in April this year for her vocal, performance and songwriting abilities with Are you Really Living? and has been a prolific songwriter since the ripe old age of 13.
Over the last two years, Jess has co-written with some very seasoned industry musicians such as Barbara Griffin, producer from Sony ATV, Jay Collie of Sony Publishing, and her musical partner, Rob Rogers.
Jess Higgs will perform at DISH, which boasts a fabulous menu and tasty bar food, at 352 Barrenjoey Rd, Newport, on Wednesday, July 20, from 6.30pm to 9.30pm.
Phone 9999 2398 for bookings or check her website at for more information.

- Northern Beaches p 4

A NEW performer playing at a new venue. Newport’s Jess Higgs is only 16 but she has a voice that belies her age.

This singer shares the musical duties with two older gents, Rob Rogers and Tony McMinn. It’s a mellow acoustic music.

“I’ve played a band before but it’s easier with just one or two guitars – less rehearsal,” she said.

She has been appearing on one of the newest venues for live music on the northern beaches and will be on there tonight and on Thursday.

The Inch is a café in Mona Vale (behind the library) and it’s been putting on entertainment. Like Higgs, from almost as soon as it opened.

“I’ve been lucky with who I’ve met” the Ravenswood student said”. It’s been very fateful, I suppose. I went to the Inch and overheard the managers talking about live music. I gave them a CD and they liked it”

What’s more, fellow songwriter Rogers lives in the same street.

She began singing at the age of about six and began performing at Dish restaurant in Newport (now called Pacific Grill) and was a regular there until December.

Because she writes songs with Rogers who regularly travels to New York for business, Higgs said there was a real mix in its style.” There is a mix of older stuff with contemporary,’” she said. “Its jazzy but with folk influences.”

Jess Higgs has an EP out. Music tonight is a t6.30 and the café takes only about 100 patrons

by Rod Bennett
- The manly Daily

Newport singer and songwriter, Jess Higgs has taken out second place in the Music and Arts Talent Search(MATS) awards held at Dee Why RSL.

MATS co-ordinator, John Brownrigg,said: "This is the first year the state wide -run competition has featured teenagers. We received120 original song entries from under 19s and they had to physically compete, not just send a demo"

At the Dee Why finals the 15year old competed against 25 other finalists for the prestigious APRA trophies and performed her song , "Are you Really Living".

"The song is about questioning the little things in life and was inspired by the french film Amelie" Jess said.

"I recorded the backing with guitarist Rob Rogers in Brookvale where we put down a full score so all I needed to do was sing. There was so much talent at the awards night it was hard to pick who would win".

Jess said she had been singing for five years and writing for two. "I love being able to make a point about something and share it with others. If people listen then that gives me something back."

Trained in classical piano, Jess said she regularly co-wrote music and lyrics.

"The lyric side would be my favourite. I really love English and poetry."

Jess said she had incorporated french into one of the 12 songs she had ready to record.

"I went on a student exchange to France at the end of last year . It was life changing and I met Rob who lives in the same street as me, through another exchange student on the trip."

The aspiring songwriter said she planned to record a CD later this year and write 20 songs by July.

Thursday 14th April 2005
Northern Beaches Weekender

- Torch Publishing


Still working on that hot first release.



Jess Higgs Biography
From Sydney's Northern Beaches, Jess Higgs is an exciting and powerful young voice in contemporary music. Jess’s music is cool jazz with a touch of contemporary roots and soul.
Trained in classical piano since she was young, Jess began singing in public when she was ten. Even at that young age, she had a huge, warm, dynamic voice with a stage presence to match. She has been recognized as the winner of numerous competitions in both classical and contemporary singing. She first sang live on radio at 12 years of age performing the classic "Cry Me a River ". The following year Jess met award winning songwriter, Jay Collie, and co –wrote her first song. This was the discovery of her new passion – songwriting. Since then Jess has not stopped writing and has benefited from the experience and encouragement of seasoned industry musicians and writers including Sydney music industry identity Barbra Griffin, (Sony Publishing, Amiel & Alex Lloyd).

Jess’s musical influences include Ella Fitzgerald, Alicia Keys, Christine Aguilera, Etta James, India Arie, Jack Johnson, Gavin Degraw and Frank Sinatra.

"She is easily one of the most gifted vocalists and songwriters I've worked with. Her intrinsic knowledge and affinity for stagecraft and performance leaves me with no doubt that she's definitely done it all before in at least 3 previous lives. If anyone was ever born to do's Jess"
Jay Collie, Jonahs Road, Sony Publishing 2005

"She’s young, gutsy, vivacious and when Jess stands up she brings everyone to attention and draws the crowd in. An amazing night’s entertainment!! Thomas Olsen, Owner DISH, restaurant in Newport

During the past four years, she has been a guest soloist at corporate functions including events for Nokia, MLC and the Australian Liquor Stores Association, organized by the highly respected, events management company, “Infinity Productions.” Jess has also performed as a guest artist with cover bands in hotels around Perisher Valley, Thredbo and Sydney.

At the end of 2004, Jess began writing and performing with Rob Rogers, mixing the old with the new, and developing a unique sound, encasing the deep soul of an "old" guitar and the freedom of a young voice, in original acoustic melodies. Throughout 2005 and 2006, while Jess was in her last years at school, they performed at Molong Arts Festival along with Renee Geyer and Thirsty Merc and at the 2005 Manly Jazz Festival as the support act for a-ka (2004 European Indie Band of the year) and had regular restaurant gigs in Sydney at Dish, Different Drummer, The Inch and Hard Rock Café. Jess was also invited to perform at Sydney’s pre-eminent music venue, The Basement, where the full stage enabled Jess to reach out and captivate the audience. Her passion and love for music shone through in a lively and well-attended performance. She was, in the words of Rob Hirst (from Midnight Oil and Hirst & Greene) “the star".

The following year at only sixteen she recorded her debut EP, Jess Higgs with Rob Rogers

Jess has now finished school and, with love and emotion, is weaving music into every moment of her life. Rob has since gone overseas and Jess has been performing regularly with her new keyboardist and guitarist, Tony Mc Minn. She also sings with Joy Yates’ Jube Town Choir, co-writes dance music and regularly performs her wonderful style of lounge music in restaurants and corporate functions. She has recently started singing at weddings and loves the opportunity to bring that special element to the ceremony and the dinner. Her dinner gigs are a sophisticated and sultry mix of originals & covers.

Edited April 2007