Jewel Ready To Be A First-Time, Multi-Tasking Mom

Jewel is gearing up for motherhood, and she’s already learned to multi-task.

At age 37, the singer-songwriter expecting her first child – a boy – in July. She’s hosting and judging the new Bravo TV show, “Platinum Hit,” which premieres Monday, and she’s releasing a new children’s album in the fall.

Jewel married world champion bull rider Ty Murray in August 2008 after dating for about 10 years. The couple initially said they wanted to start a family right away, but ended up waiting a while.

“We were both real careful and kind of cautious about it. I think it sort of scared both of us,” Jewel told The Associated Press in a recent interview.

Photo: Adam Bielawski
Chicago Country Music Festival, Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Chicago, Ill.

Jewel said they also wanted to make sure they both were at a point in their careers where they could step back and dedicate time to raising a child.

“We feel like it’s great timing, even though we’re a little older,” said Jewel, who wrote and recorded a soothing album called Lullaby at her Stephenville, Texas, home while trying to get pregnant.

Her pregnancy in turn has inspired her to produce another children’s album, The Merry Goes ‘Round, due out in the fall.

“I wanted it to work on a lot of levels where infants would like it, and they could just bounce to the rhythm of a song, and then as they get older they could get into the storytelling aspect, and hopefully have them be well-crafted pop songs that a parent would like,” she said.

Jewel knows how to create musical gems; she shot to fame in 1996 with her self-penned breakout hit, “Who Will Save Your Soul,” and has had success in both the pop and country genres.

Jewel will now impart her knowledge to budding songwriters with Bravo’s “Platinum Hit” along with head judge Kara DioGuardi.

The show features 12 diverse up-and-comers who are forced to compose everything from dance tracks to love ballads in high-pressure challenges. The winner gets $100,000, a publishing deal and a major-label contract.

“They’re hit makers,” said Jewel. “It’s a very competitive field. One day they might be writing for Ke$ha. The next day they might be writing for Carrie Underwood. So you have to be able to be really versatile and really competitive on the radio format.”

Jewel said the show, and its intensity, mimics real life, where writers often pair up to create songs for other artists.

“You have an A&R agent that comes to you and says you have until tomorrow to write a song for Britney Spears, and they tell 20 of the top writers that. So you have about two hours with your co-writer to try and get that done,” she said.

Jewel, who is also partnering with canned food brand Libby’s in a contest to help fans rewrite its jingle, actually wishes “Platinum Hit” had been around when she was starting out.

Photo: AP Photo
CBS’s "The Early Show," New York City

“I would’ve loved to compete on this show when I was young. Had I known you could be just a songwriter, didn’t have to be a celebrity, I might have really thought about it,” she said.