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Irish Musician & Singer-Songwriter, London, UK
  • Emily Coates

Isn’t Life Strange

Back in the days when I lived in Cork City, Ireland, I became a loyal fan of a music show called “No Disco” which was shown on late-night Irish TV. This was a programme that showcased a lot of up-and-coming alternative artists/bands, and for me it became a portal into a world of music I hadn’t been exposed to before. It was through this show that I discovered a band from Bristol called “Portishead”. Their song “Roads” from their first album “Dummy” is one of the most beautiful songs I know, and remains a true favourite of mine to date. For those of you not familiar with the song, you can listen here:

When I moved to London I formed a band, (I can’t even remember the name!) and this song took centre stage in our set. We performed “Roads” at the John Bull pub in West London. It was a small intimate gig, and I remember feeling so ecstatic that I had the opportunity to sing such a great song, and that it was so positively received by all. Oh to have a recording of that night!

Not long after, I was introduced by a friend to a band called “Urban Species” and I fell in love with their songs “Blanket” featuring the wonderful Imogen Heap, as well as “Destructive”, the second track on their “Blanket” Album, and “Predictably Unpredictable” again featuring Imogen Heap.

I also came across a band called Morcheeba, and I became passionate about their song “Big Calm” from the album of the same name.

I hold a simple memory of my first few months in London – walking around a very cold, grey city, taking in all these new sensory experiences, with the perfect music accompaniment in my ears.

And so, with these ambient sounds floating around in my head, I wrote “Isn’t Life Strange”. It wasn’t a conscious deliberate creation; it just seemed to emerge as a result of consistently absorbing over a certain period of time, what I felt to be an exquisite music. As it is with most of the songs I write, the lyrics arrived at my door – I didn’t decide on a subject matter or consciously try to create something that made a point. It just came to be.

Again this song stands under the umbrella of songs I aim to re-work over the coming year. (No, I don’t expect the world to suddenly end tomorrow!) It has been a long time since I recorded it, and I hear all sorts of things I would do differently today. But for now, here it is for you.

I really hope you enjoy listening, as much as I’ve enjoyed revisiting my past here in this post.

#originalsong #Fear #Portishead #IrishSingerSongwriter #IsntLifeStrange #UrbanSpecies #Hate #Morcheeba