An Auckland native, musician Jamie McDell spent part of her youth living aboard her family’s yacht with her father, sailing champion Terry McDell. It was during this time that she learned to play guitar, singing John Denver and Jimmy Buffett songs alongside her parents. In her early teens, McDell began to upload her music to YouTube and gained a fan base through social media. At the age of 16, she earned a deal with EMI Music New Zealand after sending them a demo tape. She found mainstream national success with her 2012 debut single You’ll Never Take That Away from Me, reaching number 11 on the New Zealand Top 40.
An acoustic EP, All That I Wanted, and her full-length debut, Six Strings and a Sailboat followed, peaking at number eight on New Zealand’s pop chart. In 2015, her second studio album Ask Me Anything reached number seven. When Jamie’s deal with EMI ended, she left the commercial pop world, opting instead to go independent and travelled to the United States to record in Nashville. Her self-released 2019 album Extraordinary Girl was entirely self-written and more personal than her earlier albums.
Jamie’s new self-titled album will be released on 25th February and was recorded in Nashville.