Interview with Jill Haley, September 2021

Jill Haley is a fascinating composer/musician who is getting ready to release her third album for 2021 in November. Jill is probably best-known as an oboist/English horn player, but she is also a very accomplished and expressive pianist. In addition to her own recordings, Jill has played on dozens of albums produced by Will Ackerman at his Imaginary Road Studio in Vermont – a big part of why Imaginary Road recordings have a very distinctive sound. Jill has a very interesting story to tell, as you will see in this interview conducted via email in September 2021.

Jill at Petrified Forest National Park

KP: Hi Jill! Thanks for doing this interview! You have composed and recorded a lot of music about nature and specific areas of the US. Are you traveling these days or working mostly from home?

JH: Around the time I received my vaccine in April, restrictions on travel began to ease up, so I was able to complete three Artist in Residencies that had been postponed due to the pandemic. From 3/20 to 4/21 however, most of my work was done from home.

KP: You have released two albums so far this year with a third one on the way. Has this long period of the pandemic been especially productive for you?

JH: The recording on The Canyons and Mesas of Bandelier was done in 2020, however the music was written in 2019 when I did a residency at Bandelier in New Mexico. The 2nd project, The Silence of Grace, was recorded in 2019 with Deborah Martin of Spotted Peccary Records. She completed the technical end of her work during the pandemic. The 3rd recording, Wrapped in Light, is absolutely a product on the enforced time at home and was a way for me to cope with this difficult time. I doubt this recording would have been made if we had not gone through these tumultuous times.