Now we have to be honest with you – the last time we featured 3 Pairs of Boots we wondered who had how many pairs in the husband and wife duo of Andrew Stern and Laura Arias. We didn’t know then and… we still don’t know now. What we do know though is that ‘Summer of Love‘ comes from their sophomore album ‘Long Rider‘, which will be out on January 29th 2021 (when the world, we hope, will have gone back to normal).
The album’s title – and the theme of many of the songs on the album – is taken from the life of ‘Lady Long Rider‘ Bernice Ende, who traversed the USA alone on horseback covering over 30,000 miles in the later years of her life. Laura Arias explained the connection: “The story was so incredible– her persistence, her spirit, and all the kind and generous people she met in small towns across the country… it set the scene for the record.” Arias and Stern met Bernice Ende through friend and filmmaker Wren Winfield, who was making a documentary on Ende, and wrote several songs featured in the documentary. “We felt a connection with her story. Ende discovered this freedom in doing the thing she loved most, and doing it for very long periods of time,” says Stern. “That really resonated with us. We feel that way about making music– we’re longriders, too.”
However, ‘Summer of Love‘ had a very different inspiration, as songwriter Andrew Stern told us: “I wrote the song because of my deep disappointment of where this country has gone when it comes to politics. It’s become more important to prove “I’m right, you’re wrong” than to find common ground for the many issues that we all face. Finding solutions is what we should be striving for.”
Laura Arias added that she wants to “re-imagine a path back to a celestial peace table; a kind of spiritual re-set which includes everybody and where we can all begin to heal ancient wounds. At the end of the song where I sing, “…Summer of Love, please come back home” – that there is a little prayer asking that we do find our way home.”
Andrew Stern interjected that: “It was one of the first songs written, tracked and produced for the album, but by the time we had finished the album, a year later we needed to work on a new arrangement while retaining its spirit and message. It wasn’t quite a fit to where the rest of the album had progressed. Sometimes it takes peeling back the layers of the onion to find a song. Growing up in San Francisco, the phrase “Summer of Love” had a certain meaning, but the reality was that it was all just an illusion. However I’d like to think it was meant to be the idea that love is what we should be working towards, not hate.”