After leaving university, she entertained in hotel and resort environments in Natal, South Africa before being hit with the travel bug and moving to Great Britain for two years.
From there she traveled to New Zealand, where she lived for ten years. Among other things, she performed and toured there nationally as a singer/songwriter in concerts and revues, while also honing her cover repertoire in saloon bands and as a solo artist.
In 1990 she worked her passage to the US aboard a German container ship. From then until late 1996 she toured constantly, both nationally (36 states across the country) and internationally (in Australia and New Zealand) as a singer/songwriter.
In 1992 she was a national songwriter finalist at the renowned Kerrville Folk Festival in Kerrville, Texas. She was also awarded two international ambassador certificates at the Old Time Country Music Contest and Festival in Avoca, Iowa.
She has appeared on “Good Morning, Arizona” and other television shows, and her music has been heard in the US on over 100 radio stations including the syndicated “River City Folk” and “The Songbag”.
She has received much critical acclaim for her two albums, “Leave a Little Light Behind” and “Your Heart Will Show You”, both of which were produced by Jeff Dayton, band leader for Glen Campbell. She was also featured on “A Love Worth Fighting For”, a compilation album which included such artists as Janis Ian and Ani DiFranco.
Jess currently resides in Phoenix, AZ, and works regularly as a solo performer. She is also one half of the duo Wayward Maggie (www.waywardmaggie.com).