Versatile singer-songwriter Matthew Hender dives head on into his debut solo effort, Baby Eagle
An accomplished and sought after musician whose worked with notable local artists including but not limited to The Long Distance Runners, Kubasonics, Crooked Stovepipe, High & Lonesome and Amelia Curran, Matthew Hender has tried his hand at just about every avenue of our vibrant local music climate. He can now add a solo album to that impressive and lengthy resume.
Hender’s Baby Eagle sees the versatile singer-songwriter at peak performance, tackling all instrumental duties while penning nine tracks that cut to the core of an artist barely scratching the surface of promise or potential.
The Herald caught up with Hender in the latest installment of our album deep dive series for an extensive look at the moving and magnetic Baby Eagle.
This is the first song I wrote that was about me and my thoughts. I bring up the loss of my singing voice after suffering vocal cord paralysis and compare it to one losing one’s singular voice to the hive mind that we all have grown to depend on. It also reflects that maybe a life in the rat race will not lead to true happiness that one desires. It’s a cry for humanity.
An attempt at writing an R&B song. I always thought that a Motown type singer could really sink their teeth into this one. But alas, a white kid from Foxtrap would have to do! Battlelines is about division. The division that is happening in Canada and in particular the United States. Both sides fight each other thinking they are the righteous good guy, but in the end, nobody wins, except for the elites who grow richer as they spin both sides.
Big Fish follows a story of a little harmless fish who grows to be the biggest predator in the ocean, a big fish. It’s actually inspired by the rise of a dictator. When they are little fishes, they swim with others, and we perceive them as harmless. Then, when the time is right, they grow teeth, eat flesh, get big, and grow mad with power.
You ever sat down with your phone and stare into the abyss of social media, only to realize hours and hours have passed and it’s late at night? This, is this song! While dealing with our addictions to social media, the song also discusses how through this tech platform, we all have become celebrities whether we are seeking it or not.
Goodbye, My Friend
A relatable song as we all know someone close who is struggling. Whether from outside abuse or personal abuse, they struggle. We try to help them as best as we can, but there comes a time when you got to let them go because you can’t help them until they are ready to accept your help. So we cut our ties with them hoping to see our old friend again.
A Slice of Pie
I wrote this song initially as a poem and came up with the music after the fact. It tells a story of a person who bakes multiple pies, only for them to be stolen from their window sill. They later realize that the pies were being taken by collectors of the state and throne who throw a big party as they gobble down our protagonist’s pies. Seeing the error in trusting the state and throne, our hero, forewarns us, “that if you have pie that needs to be cooling to be sure to keep it out of sight of those that are ruling.”
I’ve always been fascinated with werewolves. So I wrote a song about them! While writing the song during COVID lockdown last year, I grew to see the comparisons between the two. Villagers are locked up in their homes as a killer roamed outside, and the wolf could be anyone in the community. In fact, the true shape shifter has no idea that they are indeed the killer.
Tonight’s the Night
A song I penned about the sights and sounds of autumn, and in particular the last fleeting moments of one’s death. Have an ear for the heartbeat that beats throughout the song only to stop as our character’s time finally runs out.
The Show is Over Now
I wanted to write a song that could be a show closer. A song I could not only say goodbye to my audience and tell them I will be back again, but also let my guard down and show humility and thanks to the listeners as I let them know that through the dark times, it will all work out in the end.