A song written about people who are living but not being seen: KARIMA FRANCIS – “Shelf Life”
Karima Francis – Shelf Life is available @ Apple Music.
by Walter Price
According to statistics from National Alliance to End Homelessness, as of 2018, some 552,830 human beings have found themselves without a home in the USA. And while that’s extraordinarily shocking, the NY Times reports that 10% of that destitute population is located in Los Angeles. An estimated 58,000+, which is beyond staggering.
Although the cause, the blame, and resolution are heavily debated, the fact that we’re talking about it in earnest conversations is a move in the right direction. LA-based singer-songwriter Karima Francis’ recent track “Shelf Life” is furthering the desperate conversation.
With rightful comparisons to Tori Amos, Springsteen and Sharon Van Etten, the UK born Francis’ look at this deplorable situation that plagues her city is gritty and soul-stirring. And if the raw lyrics and slow-burn delivery don’t grab you and cause a need to help contribute to a solution, the accompanying music video will. As its bleak street footage, those beleaguered faces as it follows the daily journey of a man who calls avenues and alleys ‘home‘ are hard truths to swallow.
A YouTube commenter, queerfeminist, says, “Such a tender, powerful and emotionally driven voice. I love her. I absolutely love her. Touches of Aimee Mann, lyrically heartbreaking like Tori Amos.” While Forbes‘ Brian Leak says of the video, “the film for ‘Shelf Life’ mainly depicts a day in the life of Terry, a homeless man wandering between moments of contemplation and the raw reality of the crisis.”.
Stream the track and watch the film below.
Video by Joseph Calhoun
Song produced by Tim Carr
Artist photo via Facebook