No matter which Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas performance you've attended, people probably all wondered the same thing: "How does that voice come out of that little lady?" No one really knows. You can reason with yourself, watch video interviews and hear the spunky, girlish voice of Hernandez and then watch her performance; it all comes down to pure, unbridled talent.
When operating alone, Hernandez's music was acoustic-based and soft. What a difference a band makes. In adding the Deltas (named after one of the bandmate's car), Hernandez's sound blew off the charts. The addition of the Deltas was a hurried event, one that occurred after she'd moved back to Detroit from Kansas and wanted a chance to play Dally in the Alley. "The bands entire existence basically started in 2010. My first show wasn't even until September 09' so after that, things quickly started progressing," says Hernandez. Though technically "thrown" together, the Deltas prove to be that extra little something Hernandez needed. Now, having played at numerous shows across the country, including Bonnaroo as well as at this summer's Arts, Beats and Eats, Jessica Hernandez and the Deltas have little more than a handful of tracks for their fans enjoyment.
A mixture of all the things she grew up loving, it's hard for the listener to pick out just one genre. It's bluesy; it's soulful, yet some songs are driven with heavy, dramatic instrumentation. On the recently released EP Weird Looking Women in Too Many Clothes, Hernandez showcases her pipes on swampy, jazzy tracks like "Moonstruck," but proves she's also able to do slow, melancholy ballad tunes, such as "All So Mute," where her vocals take center stage. "I still have a hard time describing my sound but that makes it fun for me. It's hard to get bored when you have no idea whats going to come next," admits Hernandez, who also says their full-length LP will come in the next few months.
Aside from her obvious musical talents, Hernandez's efforts stretch into more philanthropic ventures. Cultivating the Bakery Loft, a small performance space above her family's store, the Mexicantown Bakery, Hernandez practices and has other local bands perform as well. "The Bakery Loft, is slowly transitioning into all of the imagery I see when I write songs. It's becoming this whimsical, creepy, beautiful freak show that marries all the wonderful and ugly things that I love," says Hernandez. She's also at the helm of Detroit Soup with Kate Daughdrill, a once-monthly event created to help fund local projects that would otherwise go unrealized.
It's clear that Hernandez and her Deltas plan on taking it to the next level with whatever they intend to do. Let's just hope that they remain as humble and helpful when they hit the big time.
"The next few months I'll be working with one of the Kresge Fellows, Louis Aguilar, in scoring a performance that will be held at the DIA this coming April. I'll also be in the beginning stages of recording the next record while releasing the first LP and hopefully there will be lots of touring along the way." | RDW