In anticipation of her new studio album "Little Broken Hearts", Norah Jones held a listening party for her new music when visiting South by Southwest Music Festival over the weekend. Ten years after she stunned SXSW audience with her critically acclaimed debut CD "Come Away with Me", the jazz singer returned to Austin, Texas to introduce her fresh songs at La Zona Rosa.
Jones confessed the idea of playing songs that people hadn't heard before gave her butterflies in her stomach. "It's a little scary sharing these songs with new people," she told the crowd before quickly adding, "But we're all friends, right?" She might be a little nervous when starting her set, but she seemed to quickly develop confidence when getting positive response from the audience.
She even got flirtatious when some male fans shouted "I'm single too!" in response to her announcement that she's going to perform a "new single." She playfully asked them, "Are you attractive?" When another fan proposed a date, she said, "I'm taken. No, I'm busy. I've got like 20 bands to see. I think we should start the next song."
Some of the songs in the upcoming album reportedly were inspired by Jones' breakup with her boyfriend. According to THR, the breakup anthems she played at the gig included "She's 22" which is a story of being dumped for a younger woman, and "4 Broken Hearts" which is about "cheating from both parties." She also sang about confronting a new girlfriend in "Miriam".
Not only did the Grammy winner perform songs with somber tones but she also got the crowd going with danceable tracks like "Happy Pills" and "On the Road". The latter song was released as a lead single from the new album and was offered as "an instant download" for her fans who pre-ordered the CD at iTunes.
"Is it weird hearing music you've never heard before?" Jones asked the concertgoers at one point during the Saturday night, March 17 concert. Before leaving the stage after playing 12 new songs, she took time to acknowledge the positive energy inside the venue, saying, "You guys are really great."
Norah Jones in going to release "Little Broken Hearts", which was produced by Danger Mouse, in the United States on May 1. Explaining why she chose to showcase new songs instead of playing more familiar tunes at the SXSW, she said, "It seemed to make sense to come back to my new record."
She elaborated, "I'm just going to play the new record. I'm not even going to play any old songs because it's South by Southwest. It doesn't seem wrong to do it that way. It's fun. This is a festival. It's for new bands but it's also just for new stuff, so it feels right to do the new record."