Building a platform on TikTok is currently the thing for bubbling musicians – but Jules Walcott is creating more than that; she’s crafting a vividly colored brand. The LI-born, LA based alt-pop artist has gone viral on the video-sharing app more times than one can count, racking up millions of views and gaining fans that span across the globe. Particularly, her recent single “Runaway” spiked significant traction – all thanks to a simple, organic video that Walcott made on a snowy day in her driveway. Her page is a testament to the power of social media – but her growth has become more than just going viral. Walcott’s vocals are silky smooth, hair bright; she even gives viewers a personal look at her home-hair dyeing sessions. The personal factor of her content makes for an incredibly engaging feed – and fans notice. It’s difficult to believe that Walcott is still an independent artist, but in a digitally-fueled era of music, she has complete control of her reins. (Photo credit Blake Miller)


What drove you to initially become a consistent TikTok user? Your platform on TikTok has grown quite rapidly – did the lasting effects of the pandemic play into your overall usage and content creation? 

I initially became a consistent content creator at the end of 2020. Before then, I would use the app for fun & rarely post content. I began posting when I noticed other artists going viral for original music content. I thought to myself, “I can do this and I can do it better.” I was not working my normal 9 – 5, and I had a lot of money security during the time thanks to unemployment. I made a promise to myself that when that money flow ends, TikTok would be my full time job. I purposely gave myself no backup plan, so my only option was to keep pushing my content on TikTok. I treated music and the app as though it was my full time career. Slowly and surely, it became just that. I was constantly calculating algorithms, emailing brands, connecting with fans, having phone calls and meetings. By the time unemployment had ended, I was making money doing what I love. 

Using TikTok to grow your platform as an artist, you’ve regularly posted a variety of cover videos, as well as hype videos to promote your original songs. What type of content do you find more natural to post? 

I feel as though both types of content come natural to me. I incorporate covers that I feel highlight my voice in a way that my original music doesn’t. I like that people get a chance to see that I really can SING. When I first started posting covers, I received messages from friends and family who were shocked that I could hit such high notes. I find that having a variety of covers and originals definitely keeps my viewers on their toes, they never know what type of content I am going to post next, and it brings a level of anticipation and excitement to my page. 

I feel like Jules Walcott as a whole is an evolution. You initially started out as the vocalist of a hard rock band on Long Island, and then transitioned into your own solo pop work. Did you always know that you were going to dive into the realm of pop, or was it something that progressed over time? 

I always had a love for pop music. Initially, I never imagined I would pursue pop music so confidently as I do now. In high school I attended School of Rock, a performance based after school music program. This led me to become the singer of a hard rock band growing up. Did I love it? No. Truthfully, I was just trying to fit in with my friends at the time who were big metal fans. I was so scared of changing myself in fear of what my friends and others would think of me. I’ve changed a lot since then. Over the years as I grew as a person, I grew into myself. I took what I liked about myself before and added my own spin to it. I started deciding what kind of person I wanted to be, not what I thought everyone wanted me to be. The more genuine I became, the happier I was.

Girl In The Mirror” and “Boys Lie” are your most recent single releases. I can sense almost a grunge-y vulnerability, as compared to songs like “Runaway”. What shaped the mood for these two songs in particular? 

I think both of these singles perfectly describe the grunge-y vulnerability of my life at the time. “Girl In The Mirror” was written a few weeks after my cousin, who was also one of my best friends, unexpectedly passed away. It set me into a wave of darkness and I fell into a stream of toxic behavior and sadness. I was struggling to do my everyday tasks. I was overwhelmed with the guilt of simply living. I felt guilty that I could wake up in the morning, I felt guilty that I had good health. I felt guilty anytime I smiled, anytime I laughed. I felt guilty pretending to be happy on camera for my fans. My breaking point came as I was setting up my camera one day to film a TikTok. I looked into the screen, and I just broke down crying. So much. I knew I had slipped and I was so angry at myself that I had let it happen. I felt as though no matter what I wear or say, I hate the girl in the mirror. I knew what I had to do and I had to let go of the guilt to get back to myself. I said to myself, “ If I turned my pain into something beautiful, at least something good was able to come from this grief.”  That same day, “Girl In The Mirror” was written and recorded. It didn’t heal me, but it made me feel better.

“Boys Lie” definitely has that same grunge-y vulnerability, but ironically it has a much more upbeat backstory. This song was written with two of my favorite people, my boyfriend Blake and one of my best friend’s Shaun aka “Wyman.” We all agreed we wanted to write a song that we could specifically market to users of TikTok. We were going back and forth on ideas until I got a text from one of my girlfriends, complaining about her boyfriend lying to her. I said “All Boys do is Lie” and that’s when we all looked up and knew that was the topic of the track. A few hours later the song was finished.

I receive DMs and comments from kids all over the world telling me that my songs help them describe how they are feeling inside and that they can relate to my music. I’m forever thankful that I have a platform to be able to do that for these kids, they just want to be heard and know they are not alone in this world. If I can make a difference in someone’s life just by turning my experiences into songs, I will forever be content with my career. 

I mentioned “Runaway,” which gained a ton of traction on TikTok specifically. First off – is your car okay (for readers who haven’t seen the initial promo video – she stood on top of her Jeep in the snow)?  

My car is okay! That thing is a trooper, the amount of curbs I’ve hit… I’m convinced it’s pretty unbreakable at this point! 

Did you think that a video about moving across the video would gain so much traction? The video itself seems pretty spontaneous. 

With TikTok I never know what to expect, but I always go into a post hoping it will go viral! That video was spontaneous, I made it a couple minutes before I had to go somewhere. I honestly don’t know why I jumped on the top of my Jeep, but at the moment I just felt like it was a good idea. Surprisingly it was, because I think the comments about me standing on the Jeep were what really pushed that video.

You’ve released 10 singles since 2020, technically amounting to a full album. Was it always the plan to release continuous singles, or did COVID-19 alter an initially bigger plan? 

I don’t plan on releasing an album until I’m much bigger as an artist. When that time comes, I want to be able to do it right. I want to be able to have the budget and the team to really make it special. As for now, I’m going to keep dropping singles!

What I’ve always found interesting is that each of your songs always has a small taste of your OG rock roots. How important is it to hold onto a piece of the genre you started in? 

I believe it’s important to “remember your roots” as an artist. Luckily for me, with the rise of artists like MGK, Avril Lavigne, Travis Barker, it’s been very easy to keep those roots in my music.

Through social media, you’ve faithfully continued to evolve into a brand. Are you also the mind behind the branding?

I handle all of my branding, but I have to give a big thank you to my followers and fans for helping me evolve as fast as I did. They are constantly in my comments telling me what they want to see and hear from me. The more I listen to them, the more I grow.  

Your followers always get the opportunity to see you open-hearted. What makes Jules Walcott so fearlessly candid? 

I receive DMs and comments from kids all over the world. All the time. A majority of those DMs are from people telling me that my songs help them describe how they are feeling inside and that they can relate to my music. I’ve had kids tell me that my music saved them and got them through a dark part in their life. I’m forever thankful that I have a platform to be able to do that for these kids, they just want to be heard and know they are not alone in this world. If I can make a difference in someone’s life just by my music, then I will forever be fearlessly candid in my songs.