Of course, it’s a song that we’ve been working on for a while and it’s really thrilling to have it finished! The song came about after reflecting on my tendency to disengage when things got tough, and how I wanted to show up more and be present, whether the things around me were going well or not. Investing yourself, emotionally, takes work and risk, and I wasn’t doing enough of it I think, The song is a reflection of wanting to be more present, wanting to “show up” in life more, to connect.
Did any event in particular inspire you to write this song?
Yes! A few years back, we were on tour in Hawaii (it was beautiful and amazing and we were so lucky to go, ahh!) and after the string of shows, we went for an ocean dive/ snorkel experience. We woke up super early and took a boat about 45 minutes out from the coast after went to the spot our guide had picked out. Within five minutes, a massive pod of wild dolphins came right over to us, and the guide said that they knew his tour group, and that the dolphins liked them! The guide and his company emphasized the respect that they had for the animals and marine life; how we were showing up in their house and that the dolphins always came over to him because, unlike some other companies, he was respectful and his company wasn’t bothersome to the animals. There was such a mutual respect for the marine life and it was evident that the animals really were very comfortable around him and around us, the tour group. They kept swimming under us and doing tricks, spinning around and jumping. I couldn’t describe just how much I felt “one” with the Earth in those moments. It was a deeply moving experience, and of course, demanded I show up for it. I felt extremely connected to the animals and to myself, and that feeling, that deep sense of awareness and presence, that’s where this song comes from.
How was the filming process and experience behind the video?
The filming process was wild. We shot the video in an abandoned warehouse, so that meant no electricity on 3 of the 4 floors, and no heat, in February! With the help of generators, some space heaters and lots of heavy blankets, we made it through though. The dancers, Nikki and Orb were incredible considering the temperature. Working with Max Moore and Alec Basse was great too; very positive and calm vibes!
How was the recording and writing process?
The song was written in about fifteen minutes initially, but was re-written several months later after not quite feeling right. The song was hard to nail down, but the recording process was fairly smooth! We recorded at Rax Trax Recording in Chicago, so we were in good hands.
You’ve been compared to artists such as Sia and Florence + The Machine. Have these artists influenced your writing at all?
For sure. I listen to Sia and Florence and am super inspired by their uninhibited vocal performances. They each let go so fully, that’s what I want to strive for on every song we record. Listening to Sia and Florence perform live, that always makes me want to make music.
What role does Chicago play in your music?
Chicago is a great city, lots of great patches of nature for clarity, wonderful musicians in town to bounce ideas off of, and plenty of great music being made to keep us inspired.
Does the new single mean we can expect a new EP or album – If so, how’s that coming along?
We sure hope so! We are aiming to have a handful of new songs recorded by the Spring of next year.
What are some of the inner struggles you are getting to explore on this new material?
Some of the themes of the new music, that certainly come with some struggle, are self-acceptance, making sense of this political climate and embracing self-change but not expecting it to happen overnight.
Any tentative release date or title in mind?
No release date or title in mind as far as an EP goes yet, but something to mull over for sure. We are going to aim for Spring for a new EP I think.
Any plans to hit the road?
Yes! Planning some dates for either end of the year, of the top of 2020.
What else is happening next in Jennifer Hall’s world?
I’ve been riding my bike more and walking more, enjoying the beautiful Chicago fall weather before it starts snowing which could be any day now!