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Jacob Shipley is a singer-songwriter living on unceded and occupied native Lenape Land (AKA New York City). He is a long-haired environmentalist vegetarian who firmly believes the words on Woody Guthrie’s guitar: “This machine kills fascists.”
Jacob began playing guitar on a nylon string when he was nine years old. His fingers hurt so bad that he put it down for a year. After picking up the saxophone in his school band and listening to a lot of Simple Plan, he decided to start playing guitar again. Hammering out 2000’s pop-punk on those nylon strings for the next two years was a bit rough.
At twelve years old, Jacob made his first guitar purchase from Klem Mazurowski, the owner of a guitar shop in his hometown. He had his heart set on a used jumbo acoustic Taylor like the one his dad plays, but Klem had an opinion about that and handed Jacob a guitar with a pointy head and a fancy B on it. Jacob fell in love and ended up bringing home his first Breedlove, a concert style guitar with a perfectly light and warm sound.
Jacob continued his musical explorations throughout high school, writing his own songs, playing in band, and learning to play a number of instruments (the current count is a dozen). Still, Jacob wasn’t quite sure he would make it in the music world and decided he needed a solid backup plan: Broadway.
While studying musical theater at Ithaca College (the oldest music conservatory in the United States), Jacob released his first EP of original music. After graduation, Jacob was fortunate enough to be making a living in theatre, with featured roles in a number of regional productions including the first actor/musician production of Godspell and as a lead in the first national tour of the Broadway musical Amazing Grace. In between productions he also played music at NYC venues such as The Bitter End, The Delancey, Mercury Lounge, Pianos, and Rockwood Music Hall, while writing more music.
When the COVID 19 pandemic hit and all live performance came to a screeching halt, he retreated to the basement of his parent’s home and found a silver lining: time to refocus on his singer/songwriter career and begin recording his music again.
Jacob’s current project is called Quarantine Nudes — a series of songs exploring the collective loneliness of the COVID 19 Pandemic. Each recording lives in an ethereal and sometimes minimalist world that leaves space for the listener to process their own emotional well-being.
His musical collaborators are Emily Gregonis of the Bandshes, Sydney Parra, and Matthew Gregory. His fantastical collaborators are Damien Rice, Phoebe Bridgers, the Decemberists (shoutout to fellow Breedlove Artist Chris Funk), Lucius, David Byrne, Joni Mitchell, and Tallest Man on Earth.