Lydia Fairhall & The She Oaks
New single Somebody’s Daughter out June 22.
Very few people in this country know the depth and breadth of art, culture, connection and creation like Lydia Fairhall. From creating, producing and enabling hundreds of other artists – Lydia has worked in almost every realm of the arts from music to theatre to film across her broad career.
But the time must come when you need to take yourself out of the hustle and truly give yourself over to concentrate on your hearts work. This is exactly what Lydia Fairhall has done over the past 18 months with the creation of her debut album True North.
After releasing her first Ep under the moniker of Tigerlily back in 2015 – Lydia has been consistently writing songs – waiting for the time that felt right to create her debut album.
Lydia worked with much loved Australian artist Jackie Marshall in her first producer role and alongside a plethora of truly gifted musicians fondly named The She Oaks – including Kali Blunt (Guitars, backing vocals) Chris Pickering (Guitars), Samuel Pankhurst (Bass), Marly Luske (engineer) and Benjamin Graham (drums, percussion) in the creation of the album recorded over the past 18 months.
The first taste of True North is the single Somebody’s Daughter out on June 22 through her own label Mermaid Records.
“I wrote Somebody’s Daughter as a way of exploring how the systems of neglect and poverty and trauma play out in small, daily moments,” Lydia explains. “Ultimately though, it is a song about belonging, that we already are who we hope to be, that what we are looking for in way of release and healing is already within us.
Jackie and I knew early on in our conversations that we wanted to try something different in the creation of this album. We had talked a lot about our higher selves, our inner beings and what it would take to create a process and environment that would allow everyone involved in the project to be working from this space. Both of us had countless experiences under our belt where we had made art- whether it be theatre, dance, music, visual art- that felt beautiful and polished, but where the process in creating that polished beauty was laborious, hard and even sometimes disempowering.
Every singer/songwriter who is not a technical player like me would have felt the horrible process of heading into a black box with no ambience, a cranky engineer and bored studio players. Initially all we knew is that we DIDN’T want that. Then, as it evolved we got really explicit about what we did want- to see the process as a living system, where hierarchies could rise and fall, depending on what the moment needed from us. We needed to feel connected to the earth, to each other and to clear whatever we needed to clear before we even opened the doors to recording these songs.”
Somebody’s Daughter was almost scrapped from the album until guitarist Chris Pickering stepped in – “Somebody’s Daughter was one of the songs I really liked from the demos that Lydia produced. It had a great driving rhythm to it that I thought would be a good balance for a lot of the easier-paced songs on the record. When it was proposed that our recording of the song might not make it onto the final album, well, I had to do something about that! We all sprang into action to add a better mix and balance to the song, to create more space around it, and most importantly, to give more weight to Lydia’s story musically. I love the way – in the verses it’s barely restrained energy and emotion – frustration, even – but then in the choruses her vocals leap free and lift the song up to where it needs to be – an incandescent spiritual journey in search of identity, strength and belonging.”
Somebody’s Daughter was recorded on Turrbul and Jagera/Yugera land and exudes a methodology and creative process that resonates throughout the whole album.