From the first fluttering notes of guitar at the beginning of ‘Columbus & 89th’, we are immediately drawn into the simple beauty of the song. Gorgeously-produced, the latest single from Sarah Jarosz is full of warmth and her clear, pure voice takes us along the most delightful of melodic journeys through her nostalgic reminiscences. The interplay between the guitar and keys towards the end of the song is absolutely captivating.
For most of her adult life, Texas-born Jarosz had made New York her home. Leaving the city behind and moving to Nashville in 2020 was an emotional wrench. Jarosz’s fondness for New York is evident in this warm and wistful homage to her adopted home. She explains: “New York signified this childhood dream that I’d had for so long, so moving to Nashville was like turning the page from youth to adulthood. ‘Columbus & 89th’ ended up just pouring out of me once Daniel Tashian and I started working on it – there was so much nostalgia and melancholy that I needed to process, and now I still tear up whenever I hear it. As a songwriter my main goal is to tell the truth about my experience, and I think the fact that that song makes me so emotional means that I was tapping into a real feeling.”
After watching the accompanying video, directed by Jody March, we feel as if we’ve spent the day with Jarosz, exploring her favourite places and stirring up memories. There’s a joy alongside the sadness at leaving, conveyed perfectly in the film as well as in the music.
‘Columbus & 89th’ is taken from Jarosz’s forthcoming album ‘Polaroid Lovers’, due for release on 26th January 2024. Moving across the country just before writing the album led to Jarosz changing her writing process. For the first time, she brought in writing collaborators, such as Daniel Tashian, Ruston Kelly, and Natalie Hemby, as well as a host of gifted Nashville players. Turbulent times lead to deeper reflection and, as the music moved forward, the intimate subjects of her songs took her back in time to old haunts, past loves and the dreams of her childhood. ‘Polaroid Lovers’ will be the seventh studio album from the four-time GRAMMY-winner and promises to maintain the impossibly high standard of absorbing lyricism and tuneful songcraft we have come to expect from Sarah Jarosz. Enjoy.