The Human Condition is Janie Chu’s first new record in over five years. In that time, Janie has re-discovered her identity, become bolder in her creative pursuits, strengthened her personal and professional relationships, and become an activist for causes close to her heart.
While taking a break from music, Janie spent some time observing dysfunctional relationships with a sharper focus, to reach outside herself and look beyond ostensible circumstances other people were dealing with. She also became a passionate social justice activist, deeply involved with anti-trafficking causes in her hometown of Atlanta, GA.
These experiences have allowed Janie to return to music with a fresh perspective and renewed creative vigor. In 2009, she began writing again and working with different musicians, experimenting with an edgier sound. By the time she connected with the producers at Area Sound Studios to begin the new album a year later, she felt free to be the most honest she had ever been. "It certainly helps that they created such a safe environment with as much time as I needed to let the songs flow out. We discovered after a few months that they just had a life of their own. That’s where the theme for The Human Condition came in.”
Janie feels fortunate to be working with talented individuals who understand her vision for this album. “I’ve always loved the depth and stripped down quality of singer songwriters such as Jonatha Brooke and Patty Griffin. But I’ve also gravitated sonically towards the epic sound of edgy guitars and thoughtful synth production of my favorite indie rock bands.”
Song topics include observations of economic and corporate fallout, crumbling families and the tragedies they face, frustrations in relationships, steely resolve in adversity, even child sex trafficking. “Every song has a very personal connection whether I went through the experience or not. I didn’t start out writing a concept album, but trying to place myself in an empathic or observant role certainly breathed life into each lyric.”
An Atlanta native, Janie Chu has opened for notable artists such as Van Hunt and Nicholas Megalis. She's played in numerous venues and universities throughout the SE, including Smith's Olde Bar, Eddie's Attic, Coffee Underground (The Handlebar Cafe), Vinyl, Red Light Cafe, Andrews Upstairs, The Five Spot, Georgia Tech, and Johns Hopkins University. Janie was also part of an FYE in-store tour regionally in GA and TN in 2006-2007 as well as the keynote artist for the National Association of Asian-American Professionals in 2007. As a modern day abolitionist, her music is being used for various platforms to bring awareness. Her song "Dear John" has been featured in several PSA videos to fight the issue, and the new album "The Human Condition" was released Feb 23rd, 2012 as part of a benefit concert to end demand and fight the commercial and sexual exploitation of children.