Local singer-songwriter Rea gives Herald readers a deep dive into her latest album Safe and Sound, a collection of songs on loss, life and learnings
Sometimes our passions can take us to interesting places. For St. John’s based singer-songwriter Rea, a passion for crafting emotionally impactful lyrics married with quirky melodies and a sophisticated fusion of styles took her all the way to Boston, Massachusetts to Berklee College of Music, one of the more renowned institutes of its kind on the planet.
Sharpening her talents performing alongside her stateside group Rea and the Tugboats before graduating in May of 2019 with a Professional Music Diploma in Songwriting, Rea returned to her home province with a more finely honed and mature sound, one that blends elements of jazz and indie pop.
Rea followed up a series of preceding EPs – Green Popsicle, Favourite Company and Call Me – with Safe and Sound, a collection of tracks that are as open and honest as they are playful and addicting.
The well versed Rea – a talented guitarist, producer and visual artist to boot – caught up with The Newfoundland Herald for the latest in our series of album deep-dives. She takes us inside Safe and Sound, a collection that aptly titles loss, life and learnings with a steady hand and full heart.
Safe & Sound
I wrote Safe and Sound about three years ago. In this song I talk about how life was so much easier when I was younger. But as I grew up, life’s stresses and pressures caused me to lose my way. The song is a call for help to get back to who I am and a feeling of being safe and sound.
Safe and Sound will always be special to me as it was song I performed for my audition to Berklee School of Music. I first released an acoustic version of the song in 2014 on my EP Favourite Company and then in 2019 I recorded a full band arrangement for my album of the same name, Safe and Sound.
This song uses the metaphor of water to describe a failing relationship. I wrote this song after a break-up. Feeling helpless to mend the relationship and lamenting the loss, I found some solace and comfort in writing this song. When I recorded the first demo of this song, you could hear the pain in my voice with the guitar rhythm mimicking the ebb and flow of the sea.
This song was inspired during a train ride from Boston MA, to Revere, MA. A friend and I were going to Revere beach to watch a mutual friend’s metal show. The train was bound for Wonderland.
Wonderland is one of three singles that I released off my most recent album along with a music video that was shot in Boston with my former band mates, The Tugboats. In Wonderland, I long to return to my wonderland – a place free of stress and self-doubt.
Nobody To You
Nobody to You talks about losing a close friend and not understanding what went wrong. At first, it all seemed like a bad dream but unfortunately, it wasn’t. Whenever I saw this person around, I felt invisible and like a nobody to them. I was haunted by this loss and felt as though I was under a curse that I couldn’t break. I decided to write about this broken friendship to help process my emotions and confusion.