Deep Dive: Award-winning singer-songwriter David Picco breaks down sixth studio album Live It Down

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What do you do when the world seemingly stops spinning? You get to work. At least you do if you’re as prolific a singer-songwriter as David Picco.

Recorded during a three-month span in 2020, Picco’s sixth studio album Live It Down is a follow up to 2019’s acclaimed Out Of The Past, and sees a decidedly shift in tone and tenor from the alt-country stylings that made that album a year-end best-of candidate. 

Picco caught up with The Herald for a dissection of Live It Down in the latest of our growing series of album deep dives!

UP IN THE AIR

This is the lead off song for the album. I was playing a couple of older songs and came up with the little guitar part off the top and the song fell out pretty fast. It’s a straight up ballad about gradually drifting apart from someone.

WAITIN’ FOR THE SUMMERTIME

This one was written off the cuff when I was recording the album. I was strumming some chords and the drummer Chris Donnelly came up with a really nice part and I came up with the melody and lyrics as it went along. 

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I had to go back and change some lyrics later but it came out really nice. Mark Feener, the engineer, really worked his magic on this song. There’s a cool video for it too that my friend Brad Gover did. It really enhances the song.

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STILL LOVE YA

This one is the most upbeat and light-hearted song on the album. It’s a little rocker about thinking of an old flame from a long time ago. Cool song I think!

IF YOU WANNA CHANGE MY MIND

Every song on the album was written in a period of a few months except for this one. This song goes way back and I recorded it a couple of times but it never came out right until now. 

It’s very contemplative and the lyrics sound like I’m thinking out loud. Again, Mark Feener is a huge part of this one. He made it sound really cool and atmospheric.

TOP SHELF

This is another one I wrote really fast. It’s about some friends of mine that I’ve had over the years who are some of the most fun and exciting people I’ve known but also very complicated. 

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When we recorded it I thought it sounded a bit like John Prine, which is fine by me.

SOME PEOPLE

I actually wrote this song after I got fired from a terrible job. The boss said that I didn’t fit in and I wrote the song the next day. It’s about hypocritical control freaks. Pretty funny I think!

IN THE FALL

People have told me that this one is a standout on the album. Again, it was written fast. A little memory of my Mother came to me and I took it from there. Carole Bestvater, who plays violin, really steals the show on this one.

KEEP MY LOVE

I wasn’t sure about this one when I wrote it, but when we recorded it I liked it immediately. It’s one of the most personal songs on the album and has a nice melody I think. 

GOIN’ ON DOWN

This is my favourite song on the album. I wrote it in my head walking home from my friend’s place one night. 

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I was thinking about my childhood and how easy everything seemed until I had some kind of epiphany one day and realized that I wasn’t gonna be a kid forever. I love the lap steel guitar by Christine Bougie and backing vocals of Janet Cull and Andrea Monro.

For more on David Picco and Live It Down visit davidpicco.com or his official Facebook page.

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Dillon Collins is a writer based out of St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador. Multi-time MusicNL nominee for Media Person of the Year. Lover of heavy metal, hoppy beverages and the loveable canine.

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