In late February, the band took a break from performing after George was diagnosed with a throat injury. After spending months on vocal rest, it became clear that he required surgery, which he underwent in September. The forced rest and songwriting sessions led him to consider what kind of artist he was outside of Sheppard, culminating in a two-week long silent retreat in the mountains. At the same time, Amy was igniting an important conversation about body shaming and beauty standards with the global #kissmyfatass campaign.
“We began to ask what we wanted next, for ourselves individually, for the band and for our fans.We wrote ‘Die Young’ as though it was a ‘final’ Sheppard song; a song about appreciating each day and living it as though it was your last,” George says. In the midst of this introspection, the band’s core team of Amy, George and Jay came together again to record “Kiss My Fat Ass,” a chance for the trio to reconnect creatively after many months.
“When Jay, Amy and I finally got back into the studio to record ‘Kiss My Fat Ass,’ it was such a fun new sound for us and the three of us worked great together,” said George. “It was clear each of us had been on our own individual journeys of reflection and growth. It reminded me of the early days of writing for the first album and how much fun it was to rediscover ourselves musically.”
Together, the band realized that far from being an artistic shackle, Sheppard was a vehicle of creative energy and foundation for each of their individual pursuits. “Die Young” sees Sheppard in top form – lush production, full vocal harmonies, and an existential optimism parallel with the band’s own journey throughout the last year.
Listen to “Die Young” now and be on the lookout for more from Sheppard soon. For the most up-to-date information, please visit www.wearesheppard.com.