Carmel Valley teen an aspiring ‘writer by day, rock star by night’By Karen Billing
Local musician Jordan Reimer is celebrating her epic 18th birthday with a concert at the Normal Heights music venue and coffee shop Lestat’s on Saturday, Oct. 23. The party will also celebrate the launch of her first novel, “Love on Lemon Lane,” a love story rooted in the San Diego music scene.
The book comes with its own soundtrack, music by the fictional characters Marshall Cooper and Lucy Ginger, as played by their real life counterparts Aaron Bowen and Jordan. The pair will perform at the Oct. 23 party and Jordan promises there will be birthday cake as well as samplings of Lucy Ginger Tea, a lemon, ginger and honey brew made up specially for Jordan by Lestat’s. The cost of admission to the music, cake and tea is buying the book and CD, $14.95.
The still 17-year-old Jordan shares an equal love of writing and music. Since she was about 10 years old, she has always been writing stories and poems, the poems eventually finding their way into songs.
Although she can also play the piano, flute and violin, the guitar was the instrument that stuck.
“I got my first guitar for $5 at a garage sale and I fell in love with it,” said Jordan, now the owner of four guitars. She started taking lessons at age 12 at the House of Blues in Las Vegas, where she lived with her family for three years before moving to San Diego. Her music now has an indie-folk flavor, she strums a fluid guitar and sings with a sweet, lilting voice that sounds a bit like Colbie Calliat. She performs at a lot of street fairs and has a monthly gig at Lestat’s.
Jordan writes her own songs (although she can do a pretty cover of Radiohead’s “Creep”) and two years in a row she has been the youngest nominee in the San Diego Music Awards. “Love on Lemon Lane” takes its cues from her own experiences — Lucy Ginger is not an established musician but one who is just starting out.
“It focuses more on the start of a career and building it up,” said Jordan. “This is open mics, traveling gigs, nobody listening in a coffee house.” At her first open mic, Lucy meets Marshall Cooper, a talented local musician with irresistible dimples and “ice blue eyes.” He offers his services as a guitar teacher and as their friendship grows, Lucy grows more and more smitten. Jordan said she is very happy with the way the book turned out after a three-year process of writing and editing, especially since the novel received the approval of her older sister.
“She cried reading it,” Jordan said. “That’s when I started to think, ‘this might actually work.’” Because so much of the book is about music, pairing a soundtrack with it was an easy decision, Jordan said. The CD that accompanies the book has 12 songs played by Jordan and Bowen, all of them folksy and acoustic. The soundtrack includes one of Jordan’s most popular songs, “Conversations with Mr. A.” The song she said “Everybody loves to sing” is a catchy tune with the hopelessly romantic themes of her novel: “My skies have been gray since the day you left me, real love is something I’d like to find before I die.”
Jordan, who is taking this semester off of college and will spend the month of November in Zurich, plans to continue both with music and with writing, hoping to pen another chapter in Lucy Ginger’s life.
“I hope I can balance the two, writer by day, rock star by night,” Jordan said. “You can do a lot of things if you let yourself.”
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