…say it clear and slow, EMILY BROWN – I Get the Feeling
by Walter Price
Oakland-based songwriter Emily Brown’s recent LP “A Fish Of Earth” is all things poetic, self-explorative, honest and beautifully eclectic. 11 tracks of truth from an artist who seems willing to lay her experiences out for the world to hear. Faith, relationships, family and self-discovery all explored in a brilliant array of arraignments cradling Brown’s stunning lyricism.
In a lengthy and open quote provided to the GTC, Brown gives us her history leading into music, “Mormonism has this running thread of controlling appetite, taming the hungry self. That self is called the ‘natural’ self– the natural man or the natural woman. A female church leader once made a joke that if someone made you feel like a “Natural Woman” (like the Carole King song), you ought to run! Anyway, I grew up with this very powerful inner censor, always wanting to be correct and believing that what came ‘naturally’ to me wasn’t necessarily right. The desire to make art became sort of a struggle when I judged it against what the church expected of me– self-denial, motherhood, and wifehood.
“But I had a grandma who really honored that very hungry, very artistic part of me. She taught me to play the piano and introduced me to all kinds of art, and because of her, I felt allowed to explore these really natural parts of myself. Because of her, I’d come across art or literature or music and I think “Oh, I can do that” and I’m suddenly painting all the flowers in her house, or writing my first poem in fourth grade, or realizing my chord theory workbook is giving me the tools to make songs. Today it’s that very natural part of me, that curious and exploratory self, who is still trying to make poetry and songs and sort of scratching at the door of these huge, romantic ideas.”
None of the tracks on this release necessarily follow any pre-destined formula. Brown’s range, at varying moments, can be compared to names such as Alanis Morissette, John Denver, Aldous Harding, and Fiona Apple. Culminating in an album full of limitless intrigue and surprise.
And to get you acquainted with this exceptional LP, check out the single “I Get the Feeling”. This one with its Glen Campbell-esque melody and open to interpretation lyrics, the earnestness runs high. Is this an open letter to a child, God, a fading relationship, or a partner? I think you’ll have to decide for yourself and perhaps make it your own. And you can stream this thought-provoking song as well as the near-operatic “Game Show”, now at the GTC.
‘A Fish Of Earth‘ is due October 23, 2020.
Artist photo by Monika Ottehenning
A FISH OF EARTH
I get the feeling you don’t know
I know it’s hard for you to see
I’m going to say it clear and slow
You oughta stick it out with me
If we keep trying like we are
If we keep loving like we do
No reason we should be apart
I don’t have plans for leaving you
I know that leaving’s not a plan
No lover ever plans to leave
I hope that’s not the way I am
But you know that just by knowing me