What I Do: behind the record…

As Chelsea and the Cityscape goes into hibernation for a little bit, and as the Socialist Night School heads into the studio to bring you more exciting music, we thought this would be a good time to start sharing with you some of the stories behind the songs.

You can see all of these coming up over the month of September on our Facebook page, but check them out below for more, and don’t forget – if you haven’t yet, this is a great time to check out our debut full-length album, What I Do (also embedded below).

Wheel Around

I’ve crossed paths with a few people who I’ve wanted to build a deeper connection with, but what ends up inevitably happening some of the time is that you just never line up. Your paths don’t cross, your minds are not in the same space or reading the same actions the same way. What then? Sometimes you can work it out; sometimes, you should just quit while you’re ahead.


Say you meet this person, who says all the right things, does all the right things. You are fast friends, with excellent chemistry. But you’re not in a place to accept anything more. This is the song for what comes after this person tries to cross into “something more” territory (without asking first).

What I Do

Part of being a woman in the music industry is dealing with creeps – creeps trying to hire you, creeps that fire you, creeps at shows. And like, if you happen to be attractive, of course they flock to you. This was definitely an angry response to one in an unending string of incidents where some guy decided that my talent or worth was directly proportionate to my attractiveness, and probably hadn’t even listened to anything I had been doing. What a shame for that guy; he missed out on some good music.

Paint and Gold

I went to New York for the first time when I wrote this – everyone had told me about the city, how spectacular it is, how magical, how busy and full of people it is. But no one warns you that for every incredible, wonderful thing about New York City, there is something equally awful and sad, that makes you question what or why or what you’re doing. It’s still a magical place, but the contrast I saw in the city was astonishing to me, especially on my first trip traveling alone. I can’t wait to be back and experience it again.


What happens when you come home and the life you built disappears from underneath you? Maybe sometimes you just end up with misplaced anger, sometimes you end up with nothing. Sometimes, you can turn all that into a tune with a sweet pentatonic lick.

Numbered Streets

I have a few lucky and wonderful friends out west, and some of them always seemed to know we were coming – maybe it was the sound of the car pulling up, maybe it was the dog barking at the door, maybe some impeccable sixth sense. So many of my friends are wonderful, welcoming people, but at this one house I always used to be so surprised, as it felt like the kettle had started boiling before we even got close to/near/in the door, as there was always tea ready to go at the moment you wanted it. This song was probably the last one to come together for the album, but I really needed it; it was a reminder of the important people in my life, wherever they are in the world.


Say you meet this person, and you are fast friends with excellent chemistry. You try and say the right things, but none of them work out right. Some things just aren’t meant to be.

Girl In The Picture Frame

One of my old jobs entailed me spending part of the day working in a very small cubicle on a dock; I was selling tickets to a harbour cruise. And don’t get me wrong – it wasn’t a particularly uncomfortable job, but I thought it was incredibly novel that I would have to take down the windows every day to sell stuff. And the window frame got me thinking of frames, picture frames, and the rest of the song came from there. It was very quiet on the docks, not a lot happening, so the tune ended up being like that feeling of stasis – is anything really happening? Are you really there? Honestly, all that given, I think the song ended up being way more surreal than the job actually ever was…

Radio Song

What happens in an emergency? a revolution? a disaster? What if the last bastion of communication in the event of disaster is the radio?

If that’s the case, I’m hopeful that we know where to turn when the time comes. And that we haven’t forgotten what the radio is in the first place…

You Are Loved

I’ve been pretty open about my bipolar disorder and the fact that I struggle with mental illness; one of the things that gets me through even the worst days is knowing that I have a solid support network (medically and personally), that I have many places to go – that, in fact, I am loved. And you are too.

~ by crymmusic on September 1, 2016.

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