New year, new single from Hastings-based singer-songwriter I, SĪREN

Hastings-based singer-songwriter Joëlle Coutinho who performs under the name I, SĪREN starts the New Year with a new single.

I, SĪREN - Toby Shaw Photographer
I, SĪREN - Toby Shaw Photographer

Long Way From Home can be found on YouTube at https://youtu.be/jfyyJtHorkA“This is single number three. The first one was in the first lockdown and the second one was in July (2020).”

Number three comes nearly 18 months later: “My co-producer has a busy life and life takes over but we managed to find the time to squeeze it in in the studio.

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“Sometimes it’s good to take time and to stand back from something. It gives you time to come back to it with fresh ears and sometimes you notice things that you hadn’t noticed before. It’s like if you do a painting and then you come back to it and you see more. It’s a good thing to put the brush down now and again and come back to things. I came up with Long Way From Home as an a capella melody. I was just thinking the words over again Long Way From Home, Long Way From Home as quite a bluesy sound.

“I was in the studio in Hastings and I said to my co-producer I have got this idea and he thought that we had something there. From there we just jammed on the idea and the lyrics came and we ended up finishing it in the studio. I kind of approached it as a story. I wanted to have a story that would fuel the song and I remembered going out with a friend a couple years ago and she ditched me. She went home with someone else, and I was left at the train station. I was left on my own.”

And no, they aren’t friends any longer: “She was so flaky! She was very apologetic about what happened but I just didn’t forget! But really it was just a way to incorporate a story into the song.”

As the year ends and a new year begins Joëlle is now hoping to be able to play live more in 2022: “I suppose I compare 2021 to the first lockdown. We had a bit more freedom in 2021 and we were able to travel so I would say it’s perhaps more hopeful. You weren’t feeling guilty about walking to the beach or getting on an aeroplane so things were better in that respect but I don’t know how long that’s going to last.”

Inevitably lockdowns were a time of discovery for Joëlle as a musician: “You find out that there is always more to give and more to learn. It is never-ending. It is sacred. It’s good to keep going, good to keep writing, good to express yourself especially in terms of times like this which are so difficult.

“And it’s also really important to collaborate with other people. I have an awesome co-producer and it’s really nice to collaborate with him. For next year I would like to play live more. The last time I performed live was about a year ago at a local venue in Hastings which was really awesome. In Hastings at the moment there seems to be quite a lot of good places for musicians to go. It has changed a lot. There are more than ever. It’s good. Hastings is a good place to be at the moment.”