“Coolest Girl in the World” music video shoot

Country artist Jenna Paulette, far right, and her entourage from left, Kristen Carbine, Loren Maring accompanied by Howl and Mike Davis of Marfa, shooting at Prada Marfa near Valentine. 

Photo by Lisa Morton

By Lisa Morton

The “looky-loos” at the Prada Marfa art building, which is incidentally located in Valentine, not Marfa, is a daily diary of visitors who could hail from anywhere in the world.  Gawkers range from regular Texas Mountain Trails tourists to the very famous people with one name– Beyoncé.   The installation built in 2005 is now maintained by the Ballroom Marfa Foundation, a nonprofit in Marfa.

Prada Marfa, built in 2005, found a way around state regulations that threatened its closure in 2014 after TxDOT enforced the shutdown of Playboy Marfa.  According to TxDOT, that edifice was cited as being illegal advertising because the company had not applied for a permit to erect the sign along a federal highway.  Emerging country artist, Jenna Paulette took advantage of one of the top ten oddities in the U.S. to shoot some of her music video featuring her new single, “Coolest Girl in the World”.  During our interview, I mentioned that I couldn’t resist stopping, and needed something for the front page of The Advocate this week.  “Wow”, said Jenna.  “Now I really do feel like the coolest girl in the world!” Quite a compliment for a small town newspaper, but we’ll take it.

According to the artist’s website, JennaPaulette.com, Jenna spent much of her life drawing from both traditional country and modern country, and is still trying to define herself and her sound. The result is an ironically harmonious blend Jenna refers to as the “New West.” “It’s a combination of old and new, keeping tradition but being apart of the modern world,” she says. “It’s a representation of the two worlds I grew up in – a balance of the two.  My mom’s side is ranching; my dad’s side is the big city sales-type.  In everything I do, the way I dress, write, perform, even cook – my entire self is the New West,” which is surprising to many, considering her love of ranching,

After college, Jenna moved to Nashville, and last year she enlisted the help of producers Brad Hill (Maren Morris, Brothers Osborne) and Lee Holland. The result of the collaboration is the sound of Jenna’s New West. “It has this traditional feel with a clean modern twist. I went into the project wanting pop rhythms, mandolin for texture, but for pedal steel to be the leading lady. I’m a big George Strait fan, and in every song I’ve ever loved, the pedal steel sent shivers down my back.” Her debut single, Coolest Girl in the World, is a prime example of that. Co- written by Jenna, Jordan Reynolds (Keith Urban, “Getting in the Way”; Lauren Alaina, “Three”) and Sydney Cubit, Jenna’s effortless conversational vocal on the up-tempo tune delivers a message everyone can relate to. “You’re either the guy, wanting to make the girl feel like she’s the girl in the song on the radio, or you’re the girl, wishing you were one of the girls they sing about.’’

“Coolest Girl in the World”, an empowering song for girls, will premiere in late August.  Jenna is also involved in a charity called “Step Up,” a mentorship program that inspires women to inspire girls.

Jenna loving on Howl

Photo by Stephen Linn

Jenna Paulette being filmed for her upcoming video, “Coolest Girl in the World” at Prada Marfa in Valentine.


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