Video Voyageur: 3Qs with Erin Hunt

Brave New World is the uncommonly rich, joyous and exhilarating second album from Toronto singer/songwriter Erin Hunt that defies categorization while freely exploring the deepest yearnings of the human condition. A profoundly musical record built for headphone listening –  to sit back, fire up a fatty and disappear into – but also perfect to blast over speakers, to groove to, until the music stops you in your tracks.

The album closer (and fourth single) “Won’t Give Up” is perhaps Erin and her band at its most dynamic and explosive – underpinning the lyric of resilience and faith – then perfectly matching the powerful, insistent refrain that typifies the spirit and drive and exuberance of the whole record: “We don’t give up, we don’t give up, we don’t give up.”

We talk to Erin about the video, below!

1. Tell us the story of this song, why did you choose to visualize this song specifically?

I wrote this song during a time of personal metamorphosis.  I’d been single for awhile, recovering from a pretty monumental relationship, and was using my free time (there was a lot of it haha) to do a lot of soul searching and reconnecting with my inner/higher self.  This song is that conversation between my soul and my identity.  Interestingly, it was the most frustrating song-writing experience I’ve ever had; I kept trying to force the song into a typical pop arrangement, but it just refused to go there. I finally realized I needed to apply what I’d been learning throughout this metamorphosis: to go with the flow and allow myself (aka the song), to be what it needed and wanted to be.  I learned it’s ok to be different and to express myself differently, not only from others, but from how I’d expressed myself in the past . There’s much beauty to be found in that perspective.

This song is deeply personal to me, but at the same time it felt really important to share its message, so I chose it to be one of the videos/singles I released.  I’ve created a video for each of the four singles released for my album, ‘Brave New World’, this being the fourth single.

2. What was the inspiration behind this video(visuals, storyline, etc.)?

Like my songs, each of my videos is specific unto itself, meaning I don’t try to fit into any particular genre. I like to allow the song to tell me what it is, both in its writing and production.  For “Won’t Give Up”, its general message is one of recognizing beauty and finding resilience in oneself.  I chose to make the video solely with shots of nature being its beautiful and resilient self. In the bigger picture, we’re a part of nature and would do well to take our cues from it. It’s probably unconventional for me to not even appear in the video, but it just felt right.  

3. What was the process of making this video?

Video director Martin Hawkes and I edited together shots of nature that he’d filmed, along with some stock shots, based on their representation of the lyrics, emotion and pacing of the song.  Personally, I feel the main purpose of a music video is to pull the viewer in so they actually listen to the music. This ended up being a creative and smart way of doing that.

This was probably the most difficult song I’ve ever written. I was intent on writing it in a typical pop arrangement (which I usually don’t stray too far from) but the song just refused to go there. I kept trying to force it into being something it wasn’t and that’s why it took so long… Now I just shake my head at how stupid that would have been – it’s truly my favourite track on the album and my favourite song I’ve ever written.


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