It’s the Ocean Grove artist’s first release in two years.
With a reputation for being a humble, hard-working artist who knows how to put on a stellar show and has three stunning independent releases to her name, Ocean Grove singer-songwriter Andrea Robertson has perfected the art of creating nostalgic blends of folk, country and soulful-blues-inspired songs since first hitting the right note on an upright acoustic piano as a teenager.
Blending honest songwriting with eloquent vocals, an acoustic melody and delicate pulsing beats, Robertson is back with her brand-new single ‘Timely Reminder’.
Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories five times a week.
Written during one of the earlier COVID lockdowns when musicians and touring artists were faced with a bleak and uncertain future, ‘Timely Reminder’ is a goosebump-raising reminder of human resilience, offering light following a long period of darkness.
Leaving us with the message that we will come out of this better if we embrace kindness and compassion, Robertson finds strength through adversity as she sings: “But as hard as it’s been, I think I might come out stronger/And as hard as it seems if I let it, it’ll make me wiser/And if there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that we all need to be a little kinder/So I just try to see what I’m going through as a timely reminder“.
If the lyrics aren’t enough to have a calming effect on you, the slow tempo and Robertson’s honest, soulful singing certainly should.
Spawned from her own experiences of 2020, the single shadows an incredibly gruelling year that resulted in Robertson not only losing gigs, projects and plans but also losing inspiration and the impetus to stay creative as an artist.
“Being a self-managed artist, you’re constantly switched on, you don’t feel like you can let your guard down for too long in case you miss a great opportunity. I had spent countless hours organising and coordinating a string of gigs, my first east coast tour. That tour, along with all my regular bookings, was just completely swept away in one mighty hit,” she explains.
“Losing all of the gigs was one thing, but it was the loss of momentum caused by COVID that was the hardest thing to deal with. And then I just hit a really dry patch with my songwriting. I had a lot of music, chord progressions and ideas all recorded into my phone, but the inspiration for lyrics seemed to have disappeared and I wasn’t happy with anything I was writing.”
Fortunately, Robertson’s love for songwriting was reignited.
“Timely Reminder’ came along unexpectedly in the middle of this dry patch. I was sitting in the car waiting for my daughter to come out from an appointment.
“Luckily, I had my song-writing book, a pencil and my travel guitar with me because the song was finished in that half-hour timeslot waiting for my girl. And it’s now become my new single, and hopefully will form part of my next album.”
A beautifully recorded piece of relatable storytelling, ‘Timely Reminder’ is a post-it note to Robertson’s future self – holding onto the good things you’ve learnt – but also a time capsule of life in lockdown.
The delicate, slow-burner hits you right in the core, with Robertson’s elegantly melodic and personal songwriting further enhanced by the accompanying video, filmed by an incredibly talented local photographer and champion of live music, Patrick Callow.
Made possible by the City of Greater Geelong’s Covid Specific Arts Culture Heritage Grant, the video includes footage at Robertson’s home as well as various locations around the City of Greater Geelong during the COVID lockdown.
“Patrick Callow is a brilliant photographer and videographer, and a great supporter of local artists,” she says.
“When I contacted him about getting involved in my project and he said, “Yes”, it felt like everything just fell into place perfectly. And he has captured some really beautiful footage of our region for the clip.”
Her first single since her 2019 double album, Live At New Hall, the melting pot of blues, roots, folk, rock and alt-country Robertson has stirred over the last few years is stretched and pushed out in a completely new way on this release, representing her optimum musical orientation.
Yet, the familiar taste of everything Andrea Robertson has given us before still lingers long after.
Andrea Robertson will launch ‘Timely Reminder’ at Potato Shed on Saturday March 20. Tickets are available from The Potato Shed website.