Monday, August 28, 2023


 With “Straight Jacket,” Gianna Minichiello keeps building a rock house of music


By Kurt Beyers

“Straight Jacket” starts slow, mellow and acoustic. Then drums, bass and guitars kick in, Gianna Minichiello amps up her powerful, evocative, raspy voice, and suddenly we’re deep into rock territory.

Which is where she wants to be. In the two years of its making, “Straight Jacket” made the same kind of transition as Gianna herself — from pop to rock.

“Straight Jacket” will be released on August 18.

By 2021, when “Straight Jacket” was first written, she had almost a dozen songs out and had already transitioned to rock.

“When I first started, all those were pop songs,” she said. This was in 2017, when she was 15.

Since then she has put out several singles and an EP, Wronged. Amid the rock, one song on the EP, “Scared Me,” was rock disguised as a ’60s era American Bandstand tune.

“I wanted to have that doo-wop kind of sound to it,” she said. It is unlikely that American Bandstand ever featured a voice like hers, or sultry lyrics like “Scared Me.”

Yet “Straight Jacket,” in 2021, was poppy. “That’s why we revisited it and made it more rock. I didn’t want to do that anymore. I want to continue with the whole rock genre.”

The lyrics, all by themselves, vibe rock such that it is hard to imagine them in a pop song. In rock, however, they, well, rock.

No one hears me screaming but I do

I hear it echo echo why don’t you

I ain’t going to Heaven I’ll be damned

I’m a complicated explanation someone painted red

I’m the one thing that I fear most underneath my bed

Open the asylum let them all out

The “we” in the production of “Straight Jacket” is her and producer/engineer Chris Moon, who is credited with discovering the artist who became known as Prince.

“This was one of the first few songs I did working with Chris. He did the lyrics, but I did the melody.” It is one of only two songs in her body of work so far that has someone else’s lyrics. Working off Gianna’s melody, Brandon Bailey Johnson wrote the music.

“Chris sent me lyrics, and I was just brainstorming ideas and came up with the melody. That was all made two years ago. I recorded it then, and it sounded completely different than it does now.”

She has released seven songs since 2021. She composed the guitars for the latest, “Killed It.”

Her career took off in 2020, with “Dearly Loved,” which quickly hit more than 2 million streams. Her songs have gotten radio play in the United States, the United Kingdom and Canada, but she has fans in more than 150 countries across the world.

She has extensive experience of crowds, opening concerts for artists such as Jasmine Caine, a Nashville Female Artist of the year, and Curtis Salgado, an original Blues Brother. She has performed at festivals and music conferences, has appeared on Fox Television and ABC and has done commercial work.

She has appeared in Nashville several times, at Kid Rock’s Honky Tonk, the Commodore, Douglas Corner, Famous Nashville, and others.

August 18, the day “Straight Jacket” drops, she will use her powerful voice as a headliner at Nashville’s DRKMTTR. Tickets are on sale now on

Apple Music will host a pre-release for the song on August 11.

Gianna loves performing.

“It’s my favorite thing to do,” she said. “I love it! I would like to tour everywhere. I want to tour around the world. I want to go in different countries. I want to be able to take the music and bring it live and have the people sing it back to me. I just want a big mass of people liking the music as much as I like it.”

Explore her music and connect with Gianna Minichiello on all platforms for new music, videos, and social posts.

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