My Inspiration: Ren Lawton – Cold Afternoon | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Newcastle-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ren Lawton releases his latest single, Cold Afternoon, a swayingly sweet song with tender and intimate vocals and plenty of festive charm that’ll get you in the mood for next month.

Here, Ren tells us more about the inspiration behind the track…

I started writing ‘Cold Afternoon’ in November of 2020 during the second lockdown saga. At the moment of writing, it wasn’t clear if we were going to get to spend Christmas with our loved ones or cooped up by ourselves. In hindsight it appears that a healthy dose of nostalgia coupled with changeable degrees of optimism were present in me when writing this song. I was hoping for a Christmas like I used to have.

Artists such as Foy Vance (Who is one of my favourites) often has themes of hope running through his work. In fact, his first LP was titled ‘Hope’. That album definitely served as a deep well of inspiration for me over the years. Especially songs such as ‘First of July’ and ‘Indiscriminate Act of Kindness’ where you can really hear the development of the story throughout the song whilst gently pushing the theme of hope and optimism to the fore.

When recording ‘Cold Afternoon’ I wanted to produce something that felt intimate and soft sounding. I also wanted to keep the arrangement and production as simple as possible so hopefully people could feel like they could pick up a guitar or stand by a piano and sing the song themselves. Artists like Laura Marling, The Staves and Michael Kiwanuka have definitely influenced and/or inspired me in that regard. If anyone does feel like covering ‘Cold Afternoon’, please do tag me on social media!

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