Behind the Track

Behind the Track: Nathan Harrison

30th April 2018

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What was the inspiration/is there a story behind your track?

Ivy Cove is a metaphorical tale of always having that one place you can go to in order to escape the tougher times and reach happiness. Everyone has that place, whether it’s simply your home, university or even a day out. Ivy Cove is a story about living life happily with the right people to carry you on your journey.

How did you write this song?

I wrote it in summer 2017 just after I left my job in the motor trade and was looking ahead towards the next stage of my life: London and BIMM. I wanted to create a song that had high dynamic ranges, vocal hooks and imagery within the lyrics. The main influence for this track is one of my favourite bands of all time – Bear’s Den – and I took plenty of inspiration from tracks such as ‘Stubborn Beast’ and ‘Agape’ from their 2014 album ‘Islands’. When starting, I played around on the guitar with an open D tuning to replicate that ‘folk vibe’, while staying as contemporary as possible at the same time. Using the inspiration of the outside summer air in my back garden, and no longer being restricted to a car dealership, Ivy Cove was eventually formed. Using the time I had in the summer, I went out plenty of times with friends from back home to gather more imagery and take photos to include within the lyrics.

Do you have a favourite line/section of the song?

For me, the bridge is the section I’m most proud of, purely down to the dynamic change and vocal hooks within. I played the song live a few weeks back and the audience quickly caught onto the lyrics ‘by the light, by the light my dear’. For me, this was special because it meant that the song, and in particular the bridge, was having an impact on the listeners.

Can you describe your sound in three words?

Folk, contemporary, dynamic.

How do you feel your sound has developed since you started studying songwriting at BIMM?

Being at BIMM has really widened my understanding of what creates an effective song. I’m now trying things that I would never have even thought about doing and this is down to BIMM. I also feel like I’ve really connected with my peers and we’ve shared some amazing moments together. I used to really push my lower register as my primary voice, but now I’m beginning to implement much higher vocal notes, including falsetto, which used to be alien to me until now, and that’s down to the people around me. What’s really exciting is the latest addition to my sound: my new line-up. This consists of myself alongside cello, piano, backing vocals and light drums. An acoustic version of Ivy Cove with this line-up is on the way!

What’s the best thing about studying at BIMM?

The best thing about BIMM is the people around you. The tutors are incredibly helpful and provide you with great advice and feedback, and are easily contactable. On top of this, I’ve gelled with so many amazing people from all sorts of backgrounds, which to me has been a life changer.

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Author

Sarah-Louise Burns

After studying Ba(Hons) Photography, Sarah has worked in Social Media Marketing since 2013 - she's now part of the BIMM Social Media Team, and is photographer for the Who, What, Why series.