Please check out the music video if you like the song and feel free to share!
This winter I received an incredible gift: a ukulele. As a result, a beautiful, little chord progression came to me, and it began unraveling into a series of ideas, melodies, moods and images. I sent a voice note to John Secolo who immediately responded that he had some ideas and direction. The idea took shape the more we played with it, and within a month the song was fully written and produced. John has a very natural and beautiful understanding of melody and chooses some of the most beautiful words that really touch your heart. Each week was a process of me going out and shooting, then meeting up with John and ironing out all of the ideas we were bringing to to the table musically and visually. A true team effort.
For the last year or so, I was taking a deep interest in photography, both by taking the advice of friends and by testing the limits of my iPhone. A friend told me that people will soon make movies using only iPhones, and it was then that it hit me- I should document my study of photography with video. For a month, everywhere I went I shot video, while back home we chipped away at the ukulele song. I felt like we were sculptors, releasing a statue that waited to be revealed. I wasn’t sure what I was doing or why, but somehow it felt right.
At times the light of inspiration would fade, and I would want to quit. Thankfully we were being cheered on by the people who surround us on a daily basis. In so many ways, I felt like we were making this not for us, but for them.
We were very thankful that Sydney was available to come in and sing the song with us. She's so talented and within a few hours of working on the music we knew it had to be her to sing the second verse and chorus. We haven't worked together since John, Nick, and I recorded her band nearly 10 years ago and it was incredibly inspiring to see her growth. We were on cloud nine because everything was falling into place. The song began to truly take shape at this point as she brought a whole new energy and presence to the song.
John Nolan has become a friend of mine over the years from touring with Taking Back Sunday, his solo work, or working on the soundtrack to the film Bridge & Tunnel. I had dropped in on an open mic night one evening at my favorite coffee shop called Sip This. We set up some microphones and recorded the room chanting the words. It was a very cool experience but it felt like it needed one voice to lead the march. John Nolan had stopped my studio unexpectedly so I asked him if he would lay down a few takes which he was more than happy to do and really helped put a final little touch on the song we weren't expecting.
This song is for you to find your own meaning. It was very much influenced by the cold and venturing through it despite wanting to stay inside where it was warm. Instead, I went where no one wanted to be, and I created a visual representation of what I was hearing and feeling. I woke up my girlfriend and one of my childhood friends for a 5 A.M., fourteen degree drive to Ocean Parkway on Long Island to shoot the sunrise. I mounted the phone to the hood of my car during a Blizzard. I saw so much beauty in all of this, nature showing me her dynamic range in its darkest and coldest days. Chasing the sun. Saying good morning and good night felt good for the soul, a real unifying feeling. It was a great journey, and I hope it inspires you to go out there and adventure as well.