Singer-songwriter Jean Tan talks about Oak Cherry Wine, composing songs during CB

Christian Melanie Lee
Singapore-based singer-songwriter Jean Tan recently released her new single Oak Cherry Wine last July 24.

We got a chance to interview her as she talked about her journey as a singer-songwriter, and future plans.

1. Can you share with us what's behind the song, Oak Cherry Wine?

'Oak Cherry Wine' is an ode to love. Like the title suggests, this love is deep, strong, with a subtle hint of cherry sweetness. It knows you still have baggage and whispers love; embraces you in your blubbering, stumbling mess, and says "I am always here."

I was in a rather broken state some years ago, having ended a painful relationship and struggled through some years of chronic kidney illness. At that point in time, I struggled to believe in human love, or the possibility of a true, faithful relationship anymore. Through the process of healing, I wrote this song as a pledge that I would sing this song at my wedding one day - and I did eventually, with a man who was brave enough to love me through better or worse, richer and poorer, in sickness and in health.

2. Listened to your song, Serenade with Dru Chen, did you consider collaborating with other Asian artists? Who will it be and why?

Yes - it's definitely possible, and I'm exploring some options with artistes beyond Singapore right now. Hope to bring you good news, so stay tuned!

3. What makes you inspired by writing songs? Have you done composing songs during CB (Circuit Breaker)?

I get inspired by my own life experiences and musings. When you go through important moments in life and reflect on what they mean, there's usually a lot of material on meaning, purpose, loss, and love. I also take inspiration from literature, shows, and conversations I have with people. During CB, I reworked some old songs and adapted them for a modern arrangement - these will release from 2021.


4. Any plans to do an album?

Yes! My next EP is called "Blooms" and is a 5-track EP. It is mostly written in the folk-vocal jazz brand that 'Oak Cherry Wine', 'Serenade', and 'Fly' (previously released singles) are written in, and all songs are produced by Dru Chen. 2 more unreleased songs will be in the EP, which will drop sometime later in 2020.

5. Message to your fans across Asia?

'Oak Cherry Wine' is a song of promise for the brokenhearted: be encouraged that, one day, there will be mending of hearts and a restoring of love - the gentle and faithful kind that does not turn away, and is with you through all things.


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