Welcome to Julia Logue’s Sunrise

The 25-year-old musician’s debut album, “Welcome to Your Sunrise,” was born via a fateful garage jam.

Julia Logue's Sunrise (Grayfaen Eastland)

Deep within the contents of Julia Logue’s Instagram feed exists a precious archival video of the Portland musician doing what she would come to love for the next 22 or so odd years: perform.

In the video, a toddler-aged Logue sits on the edge of her bed, donning what appears to be a heart sticker on her cheek. She’s strumming a guitar twice her size, and singing determinedly. And while the words are largely incomprehensible—apart from a few “I love you’s”—it’s clear the 3-year-old was making some excellent points.

“I haven’t changed, really…I’m still kind of just sitting on my bed and singing,” Logue laughs.

Now, the same Logue, only taller, is making a name for herself in the city where she was born and raised. The 25-year-old musician has showcased her self-described “introspective, alternative, R&B, neo soul and jazz” sound all over Portland—from Mississippi Studios to Holocene to the late Doug Fir. She’s performed at the Oregon Country Fair, has opened for names like Lewis OfMan and Ruby Waters, and even played alongside quickly, quickly on his Pacific Northwest tour.

Oh, and she once played an entire show to a cellphone in the University of Oregon’s EMU Ballroom…a “very Black Mirror” early pandemic experience.

Logue’s latest, and perhaps greatest, musical achievement, however, is the recent release of her full-length debut album, Welcome to Your Sunrise, which she calls a “sonic reflection of everything [she’s] experienced in the last five years.” The nine-track album—which has hit upward of 43,000 streams since December—works through questions of self-doubt, Logue’s place in the world, her connection to others, and her journey coming to trust her higher self.

The album was produced, mixed and engineered by Justin Yu K and Mitch Glad, and features musical contributions from at least six other Portland artists. In other words, Welcome to Your Sunrise was a collaborative effort, and one very emblematic of Portland’s DIY music scene right now.

“The thing about Portland that’s so cool is that there’s so many talented musicians of every genre. I have such a rich community here that I’m so, so grateful for,” Logue tells WW. “If [my key band members] have other projects they need to do, I have all these different people that I just love to work with that are down to come and play with us.”

Logue’s “kind of changeable [live] band” consists of her and Ian Lindsay on bass, Sam Mendoza on guitar, Justin Kiatvongcharoen on drums, Wil Bakula on keys, and sometimes Chang Park on trumpet.

Shortly after meeting, a few of Logue’s now-bandmates, along with a couple other musicians in the Portland scene, started jamming together in Logue’s parents’ garage—inadvertently creating what would later become the album’s title track.

“It was one of the first times we all met,” Logue says. “Noah Rozzell started playing this guitar loop that I was really digging, and I came up with a lot of lyrics on the spot that are still on [Welcome to Your Sunrise] now. It just felt like a very kismet sort of moment. I knew once I had met them that I wanted the album to be called Welcome to Your Sunrise; it just felt really right.”

Logue’s songwriting process is chock-full of “kismet sort of moments.” That fateful garage jam wasn’t the first time that she’s freestyled her lyrics. In fact, it’s kind of her M.O.

“Oftentimes, it’s like I’m humming, I’m playing my guitar, or whatever, and then the words just kind of fall out,” she says. “The basis of the ideas a lot of the time are subconscious—which is just so cathartic and therapeutic for me because I’m like, damn, I didn’t realize I was thinking about that.”

However naturally the words may come, Logue’s favorite part of it all has always been performing live. Guitar-wielding, sticker-sporting, yell-singing baby Logue is all the proof we need of that.

“I’ve always known that this is like this thing that I almost don’t even have a choice in doing. I just have to do it, and it just feels right,” she says. “I think that video is a good reminder for me to look back at it every now and again because I’m like, yeah, don’t forget that, that’s who you’re doing it for.”

SEE IT: Julia Logue, Reb & the Good News, and Mama Magnolia play Alberta Abbey, 126 NE Alberta St., albertaabbey.org. 8 pm Saturday, Feb. 24. $20-$25.

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