Songs on RED
Prologue & Songs
Love is a ruthless game unless you play it good and right.
There’s an old poem by Neruda that I’ve always been captivated by, and one of the lines in it has stuck with me ever since the first time I read it. It says “love is so short, forgetting is so long.” It’s a line I’ve related to in my saddest moments, when I needed to know someone else had felt that exact same way. And when we’re trying to move on, the moments we always go back to aren’t the mundane ones. They are the moments you saw sparks that weren’t really there, felt stars aligning without having any proof, saw your future before it happened, and then saw it slip away without any warning. These are moments of newfound hope extreme joy, intense passion, wishful thinking, and in some cases, the unthinkable letdown. And in my mind, every one of these memories looks the same to me. I see all of these moments in bright, burning, red.
My experiences in love have taught me difficult lessons, especially my experiences with crazy love. The red relationships. The ones that went from zero to a hundred miles per hour and then hit a wall and exploded. And it was awful. And ridiculous. And desperate. And thrilling. And when the dust settled, it was something I’d never take back. Because there is something to be said for being young and needing someone so badly, you jump in head first without looking. And there’s something to be learned from waiting all day for a train that’s never coming. And there’s something to be proud of about moving on and realizing that real love shines golden like starlight, and doesn’t fade or spontaneously combust. Maybe I’ll write a whole album about that kind of love if I ever find it. But this album is about the other kinds of love that I’ve recently fallen in and out of. Love that was treacherous, sad, beautiful, and tragic. But most of all, this record is about love that was red.
I’ve always said that the world is a different place for the heartbroken. It moves on a different axis, at a different speed. Time skips backwards and forwards fleetingly. The heartbroken might go through thousands of micro-emotions a day trying to figure out how to get through it without picking up the phone to hear that old familiar voice. In the land of heartbreak, moments of strength, independence, and devil-may-care rebellion are intricately woven together with grief, paralyzing vulnerability and hopelessness. Imagining your future might always take you on a detour back to the past. And this is all to say, that this is my version of RED.
Musically and lyrically, RED resembled a heartbroken person. It was all over the place, a fractured mosaic of feelings that somehow all fit together in the end. Happy, free, confused, lonely, devastated, euphoric, wild, and tortured by memories past. Like trying on pieces of a new life, I went into the studio and experimented with different sounds and collaborators. And I’m not sure if it was pouring my thoughts into this album, hearing thousands of your voices sing the lyrics back to me in passionate solidarity, or if it was simply time, but something was healed along the way.
Sometimes you need to talk it over (over and over and over) for it to ever really be… over. Like your friend who calls you in the middle of the night going on and on about their ex, I just couldn’t stop writing. This will be the first time you hear all 30 songs that were meant to go on RED. And hey, one of them is even ten minutes long.