Reflection: Specific Ocean - Say It / Sunday Morning
Single: Say It / Sunday Morning
Artist: Specific Ocean
Release Date: Aug. 19, 2022
Link to Purchase: https://specificoceanband.bandcamp.com/album/say-it-sunday-morning
In honor of its 4-month birthday, I want to spend today reflecting on my band, Specific Ocean, and the single we released earlier this year. "Say It / Sunday Morning" is something I'm incredibly proud of, and I'm so happy we were able to release music this year as we gear up to record and release a full-length album in 2023.
Specific Ocean started back in college when some music school friends and I were all looking for an additional musical outlet beyond just the jazz we were immersed in. While the personnel has changed quite a bit over time, I'm so grateful to say that my bandmate/best friend Alec Wenzel has stuck with me and together, we have really grown this project into something I'm deeply fulfilled and motivated by.
"Say It" is a song I wrote at the very beginning of the pandemic. I was in a phase of writing almost every day for the first month of lockdown and generated a lot of great tunes (and a lot of throwaways). "Say It" is about a desperate plea for communication. This song is about the feeling of being too scared to say what I need to say, and the frustration when someone can't just be honest with themselves about how they're feeling and share those feelings out loud. Writing this song was very healing at the time, and I think its message can be applied to a variety of situations in life. One thing that I love so much about working with Specific Ocean is the way a song like this comes to life as soon as the rest of the band plays it. To me, it feels like the song is never quite complete until Alec has played it with me and added his creative touch and voice to it. This was totally true with "Say It" - Alec's dreamy tone throughout and short, punctuated strums at the end are what gives it so much emotion and character.
"Sunday Morning" comes from a chord-progression written by Alec with a catchy bass-line & lyrics by our old drummer, Maya Vye. I love the mellow vibe and simplicity of this song. Our overall writing style is evolving more in this direction - with simpler harmony and rhythmic content. I really like that we're settling into writing things that feel natural, and not feeling the need to over-complicate anything.
I have also been reflecting on one of the best days of my year, which was when Specific Ocean opened for Palace at the Gothic Theatre on May 16th. We got the call that an opener was needed just a couple of hours before we needed to be there. This show was sold out to around 1100 people, and was the most amazing performance experience I've ever had. It meant so much to be on stage with my friends, sharing this music for such an engaged and friendly crowd. This show really solidified my passion for performing and my dream of being able to play shows of this size more regularly. Playing the Gothic gave me so much motivation to continue working on my musical projects, believe in them, and continue pushing myself to achieve those dreams.
Overall, Specific Ocean had a really wonderful, inspiring year, and I'm so excited that Alec and I are writing this full-length album. Alec is like my brother, he's my longest musical collaborator, and I feel so grateful to make music with him.
If you haven't checked out Say It / Sunday Morning yet, you can find it on Spotify or wherever you listen, or purchase it on our Bandcamp (linked above). Thank you for listening <3