Redwood Excessive Grad takes on ‘previous man’ in new music – Marin Unbiased Journal
I am all the time glad to listen to alumni of the IJ’s Foyer Lounge for Younger Marin Younger Musicians live performance collection that I produced from 2014 till the pandemic interrupted our 2020 season. I think about a number of hundred youngsters have been by way of the foyer lounge through the years, and I’ve a way of fatherly (grandpa?) pleasure once they examine in, letting me know what they’re doing as they go. life and careers.
It does me good to listen to that some pursue music full time and others take pleasure in it as a contact, a passion, or a calling – music for itself.
All of this to say that I received an e mail the opposite day from Aaron Halford, who was the singer and frontman of a dynamic band from Redwood Excessive Faculty referred to as Cover which we featured within the Foyer Lounge in 2016. After graduating from Redwood, he went to Boston College, ending with a journalism diploma, a specialization he had doubts about.
“It took me a number of years to appreciate that I’d quite examine music,” he says. “At this level, journalism isn’t what I need to do, however I believe it has helped me in my writing, educating me to take a look at the world critically.”
Between journalism and music, I do not know which is probably the most tough space to do lately. Both method, Halford, now 22, left Boston, escaping its freezing winter, crossed the nation, moved right into a home in Berkeley with a buddy, and started getting ready to develop into a working musician as soon as the COVID cloud has lifted. I keep in mind pondering once I noticed him play in highschool that he had the voice, the stage presence and the expertise to be a profitable singer-songwriter if he selected to go that route. Because the son of Marin singer-songwriter Jeffrey Halford, he is undoubtedly in his blood.
In his e mail, he included a hyperlink to his new music, “Nowhere to be Discovered,” an R & B-flavored tune that upon listening to it convinces me that my first impression of its potential was appropriate. Toni Morrison, if I keep in mind accurately, stated that every one good artwork is political. And “Nowhere to be Discovered” shamelessly follows this axiom in its important view of the forty fifth president, aka “the previous man.”
“I did not begin to assume I’d make this music political,” he says. “That is the primary time that I write one thing political or theoretically controversial. I need to make music with dwell devices that may stand the check of time like Motown or Stax or the opposite large R&B labels have carried out it with their artists. However my aim wasn’t simply to make an amazing R&B music. If I can have one thing to say and affect folks with one thing fascinating primarily based by myself life or present occasions taking place in society, that is what I gravitate in the direction of.
In “Nowhere to be Discovered”, he castigates the previous president for his false allegations of electoral fraud, his immigration insurance policies, his opposition to the precise of girls to decide on and his mismanagement of the response to the pandemic, referring to the grim milestone of 200,000 COVID deaths in the USA, which was the case when he recorded the voice. There are actually over 511,000 of them. This illustrates the problem of writing about present occasions – they solely keep updated for some time. The anger and frustration that originally motivated the music have additionally modified. He received stronger after January 6.
“I titled the music ‘Nowhere to be Discovered’ to not recommend that Trump nonetheless does not have a lot affect, however quite that he was away when the nation wanted him most,” says Halford. “After the Capitol riot, I received bored with Trump and his supporters.”
Some listeners could be baffled, like me, by its use of the yr 1942 to symbolize a backward interval earlier than civil rights, the ladies’s motion, and different social justice causes that may develop into distinguished within the a long time to come back. The issue is, 1942 was additionally the primary full yr of WWII, when the People rallied to wage a battle on two fronts, largely united beneath the administration of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, arguably certainly one of our most nice presidents. A more sensible choice might need been 1954, the yr of the McCarthy hearings, however that is solely my opinion. Halford factors out that 1942 sounds higher within the rhythm of the music, however agrees that it isn’t “a landmark yr for horrible conduct”.
“Nowhere to be Discovered” was recorded as music is recorded lately – remotely. It was began at the side of Riley Overend, a buddy from the music class in Redwood who went to Boston School. Overend, who did sports activities reporting for the IJ, despatched Halford items of piano and drums he had invented, inviting him to do one thing with them. Halford wrote the lyrics to suit the chord construction, which turned the premise of the music. Working in his bed room studio, he added bass, rhythm guitar, and vocals. The voices, by the way in which, are glorious. Matt Michna, a former Cover band member who’s a senior at Berklee School of Music in Boston, contributed a lead guitar solo and Augie Bello of the New Faculty of New York added the saxophone, the crowning glory.
Halford was impressed by the traditional protest / political songs he listened to whereas rising up by Pete Seeger and Bob Dylan, Marvin Gaye and James Brown. Nevertheless, he has no ambition to make himself referred to as a protest singer.
“I do know there’s some socially acutely aware music that is largely about lyrics, and that is nice,” he says. “However I need to create a groove that’s lonely, even with out the lyrics. I need my music to have common enchantment. “
Contact Paul Liberatore at [email protected]