Gileah Taylor – “Sweetness Surrounding” (Video Premiere)

Today I’m so excited to bring everyone the latest video from ultra-talented songwriter Gileah Taylor, from her new album Slow Parade, called “Sweetness Surrounding.” It’s a song about putting on a happy face while feeling sad and lost, and fits well for fans of Big Thief or Boygenius. When speaking on her new single, Taylor mentioned, ““I felt lost and wanted to be by myself, to a scary point. I recognized where I was and decided to make a change. I took steps to feel better, like taking morning walks, choosing the good things around me, and listening to the birds.” If you’re enjoying the latest single, please consider purchasing Slow Parade here. You can also check out some insight on the new single from Gileah Taylor below.

Exclusive quote: “I usually write songs in less than an hour. “Sweetness Surrounding” was different. I started it one evening and finished it a few days later. It took several days for the words to come to me, because as I woke up and lived my life and went back to bed again, I realized what it was I wanted to say: I’ve been in the dark but I’m looking for a sunrise and I don’t want to be alone anymore. When I wrote “Sweetness Surrounding,” it was just my old Wurlitzer upright piano and me. My producers, Gideon and Gabe Klein, took the song and made it sound like the classic songs I was thinking of in my head when I wrote the melody in the chorus. 

I’d recently watched Echo in the Canyon, a music documentary featuring 1960s and 1970s bands from Laurel Canyon in LA. At that time in history, there was so much happening, and many of the songs reflected what was going on in America. But the film focuses on the joyous parts of making music in a creative community. I wasn’t very familiar with the artists who were behind the Laurel Canyon scene in general until I saw the documentary. When I watched it, I realized that I would like to write beautiful, timeless songs like the ones featured in the film. I definitely was hoping that Gideon and Gabe would take it in that direction, and they did.

The strings are especially lovely as they kind of move the song along to a sweet and hopeful ending. “Curtains flung wide / Seeing outside / Like it’s my first sunrise again” from the second verse makes me gulp back tears when I sing it. It reminds me of the first sunrises I experienced after a long season of sadness. For a long time – a couple of years – the sun’s rising only reminded me of how much I didn’t want to get up and be part of my own life. When I finally came out of that darkness, I couldn’t believe how spectacular those first moments of the day can be. To me, this song reminds me of classic Hollywood films, easy on the eyes and easy on the ears.

At least, the end result is often so beautiful that I forget how much work went into the production. I once enjoyed a show by a magician who quoted the magician and illusionist Doug Henning: “The difficult must become habit. Habit becomes beautiful. Beautiful becomes magic.” I find all of these inspirations to be quite magical. And I hope that my own music is a magical experience for the listener.