Title - 'You Wanted To Be The Shore But Instead ...'
Artist - Natalie D-Napoleon
For those not in the know, for an Australian singer-songwriter entrenched in the traditions of folk/rock and Americana music, not only did writing her latest album on the front porch of her 100-year old California cottage give Natalie D-Napoleon the time and space to create You Wanted to Be the Shore but Instead You Were the Sea (due out March 26th, 2021) but also the passing world served as a poignant muse.
“I sat there and wrote and wrote and wrote,” explains Natalie. “Sometimes people stopped and listened to me playing, mainly parents with kids. Guys walked up and asked what guitar I was playing."
"But mostly folks ignored me and kept walking. I really liked watching the world go by, offering up song ideas, while I plugged away on my instrument and sang.”
1. 'Thunder Rumor'
2. 'How to Break a Spell'
4. 'Second Time Around'
6. 'No Longer Mine'
7. 'You Wanted to Be the Shore but Instead You Were the Sea'
8. 'Gasoline & Liquor'
9. 'Mother of Exiles'
11. 'Cut Your Hair'
This personal, and creatively constructed, tasty slice of Americana pie opens on the steadfast 'Thunder Rumor' and backs that up with the melodic 'How to Break a Spell,' the summer breeze ambiance of 'Wildflowers,' the wisdom of starting over is brought forth within 'Second Time Around,' and then we get both the aptly-named, muted restrains of 'Soft' and then the flying high euphoria of an ended relationship within 'No Longer Mine.'
Up next is the earnest yearning of the title track 'You Wanted to Be the Shore but Instead You Were the Sea,' which is followed by the lush, gently swaying beauty of 'Gasoline & Liquor,' the more forthright 'Mother of Exiles,' the ponderances of 'Reasons,' with the album rounding out on the foot-tapping 'Cut Your Hair,' closing on the harshness of human self-reflections found within 'Broken.'
So, I guess the view from her porch also gave Natalie a new perspective.
“All my life I've written personal songs.” Natalie continues. “I’ve tucked myself away and poured my emotional life into music, yet I discovered after a while it burnt me out. It wasn't always a well that was nourishing, but one that began to drain me emotionally."
“As the songs began to flow, a theme emerged — I was telling stories of women that passed me by. But these were stories that aren’t commonly told in song."
"Women have long been the muse in song-writing but it’s been a very one-dimensional view. Rarely have our complexities been portrayed — I wanted to change that."
"'Second Time Around' is a song about the wisdom that comes with starting over and 'No Longer Mine' enthusiastically celebrates the resulting liberty from ending a relationship while 'Wildflowers' is a rustic front-porch song."
“The songs did not come without work,” Natalie is quick to add. “But this time I decided to feed the songbird within me. I gave her water and seeds as you do to any living creature you want to keep coming back to visit.”
In closing, You Wanted to Be the Shore But Instead You Were the Sea is Natalie D-Napoleon’s surrender to music — a place where it’s okay to be vulnerable and courageous, fierce and kind, and to stand your ground yet still be forgiving all at the same time.
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