Singled Out: The Northstar Session's Late Bloomer
"Late Bloomer" is one of those songs that songwriter's either say "it just hits" or "just came to them." In this case, the song came out of a music idea or riff that I had cataloged a couple years before Kane and I wrote it. The meat of the song is basically a variation of 2 chords that creates tension with the vocal melody.
When I initially came up with the music I had a sort of anthem, sing along, group chorus idea in my head (which is initially how the song begins). Kane and I wanted the focus of the song to be centered around the chorus so we decided to pretty much keep the verse and chorus structure (chord-wise) essentially the same. This is probably also one of the most minimally structured songs we've written, the simplicity of the music portion really allowed us to focus of the lyrics, melody and groove.
So the writing process that Kane and I usually do starts with a chord progression or riff that either one of us brings to the table. Sometimes it happens with a lyric or melody, but in most cases spawns from a progression or riff. The song usually starts to take shape after we've been hanging out and chatting for a while. Usually the subject of the song is a result of the conversation we were having. "Late Bloomer" came out of a conversation we were having about people we knew; friends & fellow musicians who we felt had so much talent and potential but had somehow become lost along the way. Some had realized their potential and capitalized on it, but in most cases, these people were floating around waiting for something to happen instead of taking charge. We wanted to write a song about the "late bloomer" type of person that has sat on their talent for longer than usual but finally wakes up and takes action after the "light bulb goes on." We both definitely had some previous personal experience with this subject matter, so that also helped write some of the lyrics faster.
This song literally was written in about 15 minutes. After our initial conversation (and a few glasses of wine!!!) Kane and I came up with the chorus idea. We usually start with the chorus idea so that we know that our initial focus will be for the song. The main theme of the song "oh no, alright, let go" was the anthem and sing along focus that we wanted. We chose to use that as the beginning, creating a prelude to the chorus, because once you get there (to the chorus), you get the resolution to that phrase which is "I'm a late bloomer and the moment is now, I know, I know, I know, I know." This was the light at the end of the tunnel portion of the conflict and the idea of the lost person waking up. The verses became the conflict/ tension and the chorus- the resolution and release.
I wish every song could be written in 15 minutes! When they do come (and you are pleased with the end results) you feel really lucky as a songwriter.
Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself and learn more about the album right here!