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Sound Circuit

A certain kind of trust

6/18/2014

Bonne Finken plays the Temple Theater on Thursday, June 19.

Bonne Finken plays the Temple Theater on Thursday, June 19.

She doesn’t want to call it vindication, but Bonne Finken is starting to see the payoff of trusting in herself. After years of doing things her own way — often to what others perceived as her detriment—Bonne’s newest album, “Fairytails/LoveAffairs” is taking her to the ever elusive next step.

“I didn’t let anybody tell me (what the album should sound like),” she said. “I said, ‘What do I want?’ I found producers who met everything I wanted. And since one producer didn’t fit the bill, I used multiple producers. So this album is almost exactly what I wanted it to be.”

Early on in her career, Finken walked away from a chance to be on a musical competition reality show. This was back when these shows were still legitimately making people’s careers, but Finken didn’t like the idea of giving up total creative control. She’s turned down at least two record contracts for similar reasons. Then, when it came to producing what would become the first songs on this new album, she thought she’d finally hit it.

Finken hooked up with producer Michael Krompass, who’d played with Smashmouth and had a hand in the careers of musicians like Nelly Furtado and David Archuleta. The pair worked together on five singles, the most notable being “Step Back Baby.” But Krompass wanted to remake Finken in the style of Pink or Gwen Stefani: Sexier, skimpier. Once again, Finken said no and walked away.

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“My first album was me going ‘I don’t know what I’m doing,’ ” she admitted. “I let producers steer me. “Shades of White,” for example, wasn’t originally a blues song. But (bassist/producer Jon Locker) said, ‘This could be a really great blues song if you slip into this key…’ and I just thought, ‘Ok, I’m supposed to be this, I guess.’ ”

“The second album was just rebellion,” she continued. “I was so tired of people telling me to pick a genre that I took every song in a completely different direction, which is stupid to do.”

Finken was determined not to make either mistake again. And after years of struggling through the doubt and the naysayers, “Fairytails/LoveAffairs” emerged as the result. The result has been an unqualified success. The album is receiving airplay on hundreds of college radio stations around the country (topping the charts on several), and “Step Back Baby” is getting regular play on KSTZ here in town.

“It helps me trust myself,” she said. “But it’s not validation. It’s confirmation.” CV

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