Singled Out: Carter Beckworth's Jillian

Keavin Wiggins | 08-02-2021

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Santa Fe Singer-Songwriter Carter Beckworth just released his brand new single "Jillian" ahead of his forthcoming album, and to celebrate we asked him to tell us about the track. Here is the story:

I got a call from a friend who was living in Manhattan in the fall of 2014, asking if I wanted to come visit her. So I flew up there from Austin and we pretty much started dating immediately. Over the next couple of months I booked a bunch of shows in the city so I'd have an excuse to keep visiting her. I started writing this poem, that later became the song "Jillian", when she was at work one day and I was sitting in her apartment. A lot of what I had originally written was fairly dark, because I was having a great time, but I was also nervous that the moment would fade.

I was too excited at the time to be nervous in a bad way, but there was certainly a feeling that I was putting a lot of work into developing a relationship with this person and it was so exhausting that I really wanted everything to work out so I wouldn't have to go through that again.

A couple months later we were living together in Texas and I came up with this poppy little chord progression one afternoon before a gig. I remembered I had the poem I had written over the course of several trips to New York, but it really didn't fit the music. Then I started pulling certain lines from the poem that I thought sounded somewhat happy and I sped up the temp significantly.

Fast forward several years to when I started recording this new album and I showed the song to Brian Sutton, who was laying down guitar tracks at the time. He's a killer musician and everything he plays turns to gold, so it wasn't surprising that when he interpreted the music I'd written for the song, it sounded totally different than what I'd envisioned. What resulted was this up-tempo bluegrass-y finger picked thing that completely changed the way I sang the words. The dobro was Brian's idea too, and I think it provides a perfect intro. As an added bonus, Jillian liked it, which is essential, since we're married now.

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen and watch for yourself below and learn more about Carter here

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Singled Out: Carter Beckworth's Jillian

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