Jaclyn Bradley

A Buddhist monk stood in singer-songwriter Jaclyn Bradley’s Ireland apartment. “You have it all wrong,” he told her. “Reincarnation doesn’t just happen at the end of life… Being renewed can happen in any instant; you can be reborn at any time.”

A week later Bradley learned things in that same apartment that led to the end of her marriage and subsequently led to the American singer moving home. The monk, who was her neighbor, worked at McDonalds [true story], so he brought her boxes marked as “nuggets” and “French fries” so she could pack up her life and be reborn.

As a teen, Jaclyn Bradley left the lakeside town of Lorain, Ohio to pursue music. The years and miles away led her on many adventures: studying opera at Indiana University, working in television in L.A., and to New York City where she stopped her roommate from going to work at The World Trade Center on September 11th. After watching the Twin Towers fall from her roof, Jaclyn turned from singing classical works to writing her own songs.

The road also led Jaclyn to hospitals where she conducted music therapy bedside and in surgery. With motherhood came a move to The Netherlands, then Ireland where she raised her daughter while recording music, making films, and starring as a contestant on The Voice of Holland and Ireland’s Got Talent.

Arriving full-circle, the journey back to her birthplace of Lorain and the opening of her heart to love again is the topic of Bradley’s latest musical release, “Hometown.”

Lorain is a town famous for its lighthouse; perhaps it was the light of that Lake Erie beacon guided Bradley home. In late 2019, right before the pandemic hit, Bradley moved with her daughter back to the place she was born. “To say I wasn’t broken and scared would be untrue,” shares Bradley, “but in the nurturing place that raised me, I was able to thrive, reinvent and find light again.”

This is not that first time Lorain, Ohio has been reverently mentioned by a creative native. Legendary author, Toni Morrison was also born in Lorain and wrote in her autobiographical novel, The Bluest Eye, “Few people can say the names of their hometowns with such sly affection. Perhaps because they don’t have hometowns, just places they were born.” Lorain seems to be the former for Ms. Bradley.

In 2020, she opened a music school, “Rock Town Music Academy” where she now teaches students of all ages to find their unique songs and voices. In just a few years, the school was awarded best music instruction in Lorain County. Currently, it’s nominated for best music school in the area by Cleveland Magazine.

Bradley found love again. Hometown, a song about finding everything you were searching for in your own backyard, was penned in Bradley’s garden with her partner/co-writer Derek Connell. Jaclyn invited her local friends to be a part of the project and throughout the song you may hear chants of friends singing along around a campfire.

Hometown was produced in Nashville, Tennessee by Austin Moorhead (Mickey Guyton, Carly Pearce).

“On the way to the Nashville studio to record Hometown, we were picked up by a Lyft driver from Lorain” proclaims Bradley. “During the drive we shared childhood memories and called mutual friends. It’s amazing how signs and gifts are always all around us if we are open to them.”

As for the song, Bradley hopes that it will touch the hearts of anyone who is connected to their roots. “Sometimes we find that everything we are searching for already lives inside us. The most beautiful trip is always the one you take back to your own heart.”

“Hometown” and its b-side “Burn for You” will be available on vinyl and all streaming services on July 7th.