Artist Spotlight: Jai Fajardo

Recovery through electronic sound
Alyssa Laube, Associate Editor

Fajardo (1)
Electronic artist Jai Fajardo teaches healing through her music. (Alyssa Laube)

Jai Fajardo was born into the electronic music scene. Her parents met in a club her father owned, where her mother was working as a dancer and her uncle performed as a DJ. That club was still bustling while Fajardo was growing up, and she carried the influence that she heard there throughout the rest of her creative life.

“My family’s always been involved in production, so whenever my dad’s done a show or an event he’s had very captivating introductions and a lot of them have been very electronic,” she says. “I’ve just gravitated towards how that makes me feel and moves me. That’s why I just can’t stop making it.”

Now, Fajardo is making electronic music with the goal of helping others heal and succeed. She learned to use creation as a medium for self-discovery and communication in her youth, and is now dedicated to spreading what she learned to as many people as possible.

“When I was younger, I had a lot of difficulties connecting to other people. I was not able to communicate my ideas with people or become friends with people as easily as I thought. Making music helped me communicate to people better, and when I had no friends, music uplifted me to keep trying,” she says. “That’s why I love inspirational music and giving people the hope that, even though life is tough, you can keep trying and it’s going to get better. There’s always a skill that people can get better in.”

Lyrically and stylistically, her music reflects that. Songs like “Stay Strong” and “Find a Way” are deeply inspirational, with strong vocals and upbeat synth and beats set behind personal lyrics.

Fajardo relates to pop music because it’s “constantly changing”, and she appreciates “being able to be relevant to other artists and other people around [her] in the community.”

“I create my own music and produce stuff, so I love being able to be challenged by what’s popular at the time, whether it’s heavy bass or more conga music beats. I love being able to create around elements that people are interested in and I’m interested in as well,” she says.

Four singles have been released under her name, and she’s planning on putting out another every two months for the rest of the year. By the end of 2017, she should have enough material to put out a full EP, and is planning to do so with artistic collective Legacy Creative. Publishing music videos to accompany the tracks and playing a showcase with Legacy Creative this May are also in the blueprints for Fajardo’s future.

Aside from her upcoming single releases, she is DJing tropical house music on the side and starting her own business, Mindmilk, to educate people about the therapeutic qualities of creating music.

“The goal is to educate people about mental and physical health through music, so showing how music can uplift a person and how the actual sound of music is interacting with the body of a person and their mind,” she says. “It’s providing workshops and talks as well as teaching music.”

Moving on from feelings of loneliness, powerlessness, and insecurity is what she aims to do with her music and blossoming company, and she urges fans to stay tuned to her social media pages.

“I believe that art isn’t about the product but the actual process,” says Fajardo. “I’m spending a lot more time thinking about how to share that process with people rather than playing shows and showing the product all the time. From there, I’m able to tell myself that it’s okay to be sad. It’s okay to be angry or to fail sometimes, but through that, there’s always going to be a way out and a positive side to it that I may not have seen if I hadn’t written that song or gone through that experience.”