Photo credit: Bree Burchfie
She Returns From War writes music that is a cavalcade of hard-hitting lyrics with wide open arrangements that brim with wanderlust. “Connector” off their debut album Oh, What A Love (10 Foot Woody) features a lively acoustic guitar hotfooting across a four-on-the-floor band. What’s not to love here: well-wrought lyrics, a solid hook, great harmony lines, and even handclaps. Lead songwriter of She Returns From War, Hunter Park, joined me for a brief chat about her song writing community, Charleston SC, and daily routines.
Snag yourself a copy of Oh, What A Love here.
SC: "Connector" finds the balance of place and friendship against a frenetic interior landscape with the narrator singing: “these harbor lights that calm my mind / with all the chaos in the storyline”. How do you see the relationship between the landscape and inner struggle?
HP: Certain landmarks will always carry the power to solidify certain memories for people, evoke feelings of magic, or even danger in our minds.
SC: What was the writing process like for "Connector"?
HP: The song came from realizing changes in the people and place that I have always called home, in the sense that people move on, grow up, and nothing stays the same but keeping what you learned with you helps you survive the longing for the way things were and help you make the best of the differences.
write daily. There's not a science to it even at times I wish there were. I suffer from writer's block quite often but I look at writing as a parallel to my learning about the world. I'm constantly growing, things are constantly changing, but as long as I'm learning I'll keep writing.
SC: How does your community of songwriters influence your writing?
HP: Being a part of such an incredibly vibrant group of songwriters has been a huge blessing. We've got so much talent in Charleston I could go on for days. When I first started writing songs, I was (and still am) surrounded with ladies like Lily Slay, Rachel Kate, and Jordan Igoe, all of these women bring such beautifully unique ways of writing to the scene. We share a love of country music, the certain bows in and out of independence, heartbreak, and the romance of the smokey bar, these women have never failed to bring the power. The soulful crooners like Grace Joyner blend dazzling key and bass solos with beautiful harmonies, singing with her has inspired me to add different elements to the way I build songs. Seeing bands slay the stage with technical grace like Secret Guest, and ET Anderson to the legendary performances put on by Susto, Brave Baby, Beach Tiger, and The High Divers, at the end of the day we are all writers building these songs from simple melodies into transformative art that has the power to take people out of their heads and into their hearts. There's a lot of inspiration here.
The Sound Connector is an online magazine for songwriters. We feature songwriting challenges, monthly interviews, and the opportunity to discover new songwriters. We are interested in all things related to the craft of songwriting.
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