Two decades after her wildly successful Disney Channel series The All-New Mickey Mouse Club came to an end, Jennifer McGill is stepping back into the spotlight with her upcoming debut full-length solo album, Unbreakable (buy title track) to be released in August. To listen to the title track on this page, please click “play” above.
It’s hard to believe that 20+ years have passed since the show affectionately referred to as “MMC” launched the careers of McGill and her talented cast mates that included Justin Timberlake, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, JC Chasez, Ryan Gosling and Keri Russell, among others. Performing professionally since the age of 10, McGill was one of the only cast members to appear in all 300+ episodes over seven seasons. But unlike some of her famous friends, the transition to a career beyond Disney didn’t happen quite the way she planned.
“Most of the kids who stayed in the limelight went to New York or L.A. to pursue their careers wholeheartedly and I wound up going to college,” recalls McGill. “By the time I was 21 or 22 with a pending Capitol Records deal, I was told I sounded ‘too old’ or that I spoke ‘too well’ or didn’t resonate with the bubblegum pop movement that was going on at the time. No one ever said I was bad at singing, just that I didn’t look right or fit into categories that were completely out of my control.”
Those feelings of insecurity and inadequacy multiplied all the more after her unconditionally supportive mother suddenly died of a heart attack while the two were having lunch.
“My mother passed away when I was 24, and when she was gone, I was super lost,” says McGill. “I became even more lost, angry and isolated to the point where I didn’t feel like anything mattered anymore without her being there. I lost my motivation, and by 30, I had dug myself into a really painful spiritual hole with bad relationships and lots of the typical ‘rock star’ trappings, only without the fame…” For the full story and to watch the official video for “Unbreakable,” please click the image below to go to CCMmagazine.com: