Australia Decides 2022: Jaguar Jonze
About the Artist
Jaguar Jonze is the stage name of Deena Lynch, a Taiwanese-Australian artist born in 1992 in Yokohama, Japan. Having lived in Australia most of her life, Jaguar is currently based in Brisbane, Queensland.
Jaguar has been releasing albums, EPs and singles for nearly a decade now. Initially, her music was released under her birth name of Deena, but from 2018, Jaguar Jonze was born to create a distinction between her reserved real-life self and her rockstar stage persona. As well as music, she is also a passionate visual artist and photographer.
She first came to prominence for Eurovision fans when she appeared in Eurovision - Australia Decides 2020 with the alt-rock track 'Rabbit Hole'.
After Australia Decides, Jaguar Jonze became the symbol of a new #MeToo movement in the Australian music industry, after speaking out about her experience of sexual assault. Speaking to Four Corners, Jaguar said:
“I wanted people to know that they weren’t alone. And I think I just wanted to feel the fire that was already starting to burn. It’s just been such a long time of hiding, hiding and hiding that it just took one little thread to unravel it all, in the end”
For her incredible activism, Jaguar received the 2021 AIR Outstanding Achievement Award and was nominated for the Triple J Done Good Award.
About the Song - 'Little Fires'
You don't have to listen too hard to hear the influence of Jaguar's activism on her art in her latest Australia Decides track, 'Little Fires.' In the song, Jaguar returns to the metaphor of fire burning inside her, determined to make a change and overcome systemic assault and harassment.
Whereas her first Australia Decides experience came about at the last minute, Jaguar was this time approached and asked to submit songs, as she told Aussievision in our interview with her:
I locked myself up for about a month and I wrote seven songs for ‘Eurovision Australia Decides’. I don't think I've ever worked so hard in pumping these songs out, but I wanted it to be my best work, and so I put everything into making that happen.
The song has been co-written by Jaguar; PJ Harding, who has written songs for Ruel, Jessica Mauboy, Guy Sebastian and worked with Lil Nas X; and Louis Schoorl, who is a Dutch-born singer songwriter who co-wrote Guy Sebastian’s 'Tonight Again' and Benjamin Ingrosso’s 'Dance You Off'.
What can we expect at Australia Decides?
While Jaguar is keeping schtum about the details of her live performance on the Gold Coast, she is very confident in stating that she's going her staying true to her artistry in constructing her three-minute performance:
I have these big dreams that I want to make happen and I'm trying to work through the loopholes to making that happen. But basically, I want to push boundaries, I want to show that I'm a versatile artist and I want to let people have experiences that they've never had before.
The music video for 'Little Fires' could provide an indication of what to expect from this on stage. In the video, Jaguar appears hanging in a set of tangled ropes, with lighting changes symbolising shifts in mood as the song grows and builds.
Ultimately, though, Jaguar reminds us that she's not interested in presenting herself as an individual, but as a member of a team up there onstage:
I honestly think it's my best song I've ever written in my entire life. [...] I'm really working hard for this performance to be not an individual pursuit. It's a societal - like, community spirit that I want to embrace. So I think everyone has an involvement in this performance, and we're going to perform it together. So that's what I'm gonna say: it's a collaboration for all of us.
Watch our interview with Jaguar Jonze
Our review and rank podcast episode
Other Aussievision Resources
Find out everything you need to know about Australia Decides 2022 here.