Today’s song premiere comes from Amsterdam, with VanWyck’s first single from her upcoming album ‘God is in the Detour‘. It is an album that has come to be through the pandemic, with the time to pull together an album of predominantly solo and acoustic recordings coming out of the lockdown and the inability to be out playing live. An already begun album with string arrangements and multi-layers of instruments was put on hold because the players could not meet, and instead ‘God is in the Detour’ was recorded. As VanWyck explains “These are songs I wrote alone with my guitar, and a few songs I recorded earlier with only piano that haven’t been released on an album. Fans kept asking me for these songs on CD (songs like ‘We Do Not Speak’ and ‘This Time That Time’). I’ve had this ‘detour’ idea for some time. I really enjoy it when things don’t go according to plan. Actually I think that is where the magic happens, when you let go of the reigns and end up in unexpected places. Both in music and in life. We hope to do a tour called ‘The Detour’ when we can.”
‘Your Favourite Tune‘, though, comes from a very personal place as it commemorates a close friend who passed away recently. Again VanWyck explains “a good friend of mine passed away very suddenly. She was diagnosed with a severe and malignant brain tumour and six weeks later she died. Leaving behind her girlfriend and two teenage daughters. She was such a big presence, had such a wonderful, joyous and funny character that it felt impossible that she was so suddenly gone. I wrote this on Facebook:
‘In the short time she had left, she was able to say goodbye to her loved ones so lovingly and courageously. Above all she was grateful: for the richness of life, for love, for her daughters, her friends. She told us all one last time to please not worry so much about the small stuff – how stupid that is, how wasted the time, that she could see that so clearly now she was already with one foot on the other side. How much bigger love and friendship are compared to the small stuff. She told me I should write some more songs. I will try. And I will think of the thousand times she made me laugh. And of how her hand waved above the crowd on the dance-floor.’
And now I realise those words have all the elements of the song ‘Your Favourite Tune’ which I wrote for her later. ‘Your Favourite Tune’ felt very different from the ones I was writing for the string-arrangements album. It is so direct and uncomplicated, in a way. Every word is simple and true. I hope it does her justice. It also made me understand that I should record an album with these songs, my detour songs, true and simple, honest and sincere. Unadorned maybe, or smaller in a way. Less complex and ambitious maybe, but also rounded. I wrote and recorded two more songs like that: ‘I Wish You Well’ and ‘The Garbagemen’. Along with the song ‘God Is In The Detour’, I feel like they belong together. Sometimes you need things that are crystal clear. Maybe that’s what it is: these songs have a certain clarity, a see-through-ness. Every word is in its place and everyone can understand them. Or feel the emotion in them.”
Photo: Han Ernest
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