Moriah Bailey - The Ocean Life

Song of the Day
Hosted by John Richards

Today's Song of the Day, as chosen by John Richards, host of The Morning Show on KEXP, is "The Ocean Life" by Moriah Bailey, from the 2022 album i tried words on Keeled Scales..


 
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photo by Ariel Stephenson
written by janice headley

"i was hoping on the ocean life to pull through /
turns out i’ll have to say goodbye real soon."

On her sophomore full-length, i tried words, harpist/vocalist Moriah Bailey reflects on the end of a relationship, and the definitions and expectations of "femininity" that can play into not only romantic relationships, but friendships, jobs, or family. 

Not only is this reflected in her words, but also on the expanded sound she presents on the new album. After recording the voice and harp parts in her former rental home in Tucson, AZ, she recruited Sarah Reid (violin), Ryan Robinson (percussion), and Ricky Tutaan (guitar) to contribute to those tracks, allowing them to follow their own "musical intuition and insight." The beautifully woven results provide a backdrop for her thoughtful lyrics, ruminating on the struggle of dualities: "yes/no, future/past, darkness/light, giving/taking, masculinity/femininity, wants/needs."

Today's Song of the Day is accompanied by a video directed by Lauren Reese. Bailey shares on her Instagram, "When we initially talked about collaborating on this, I let her listen to the whole album and choose a song that she was excited about. The video was filmed at the Wichita Mountains Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma. Elmer Fajardo and [Holly Pierce] assisted Lauren in shooting the video and providing me moral support in being in front of the camera. Ha. The result is a really compelling illustration of themes in the song that plays with shots of light, reflections, shadows, movement, and water." Watch below.

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