One year after losing his homestead to lava, Big Island musician Drew Daniels returned home with a resilient anthem titled “Get Back Up.” Featuring an internationally crowd-sourced choir and some vocals from his local music scene (Imani Dreadz of OK2Change, Lopaka Rootz, Sarah Bethany, and others), Daniels delivers an honest account of his journey through trauma and an expression of strength in this genre-bending single. “Get Back Up” comes as a powerful follow-up to last year’s single “Our New Life.”
The single “Get Back Up” was recorded at Mana Music Studio on the Big Island of Hawai’i by producer Michael Surprenant, and will be featured on Drew’s upcoming full-length album, Fertility from Fire. The single and video will be available on all digital platforms on May 31, 2019. The music video will also be premiering at the Made in Hawaii Film Festival at the Palace Theatre in Hilo this weekend.
Watch the video
Drew Daniels on losing his homestead and recording his new single.
In fall of 2015, we broke ground on raw land in the upper Kapoho area of Puna. Over the next year I built and established our off-grid homestead. We lived on solar power and water catchment like many people in the area do. We had really just begun cultivating a food forest with our community when the eruption occurred.
Shortly after evacuating our home, I recorded “Our New Life” with Michael Surprenant at Mana Music Studio – actually on May 30 last year. We lost our home the next day on May 31, 2018, one year ago exactly from when “Get Back Up” is being released.
A few months ago, I put out a request to my network to be a part of this “choir of resilient voices” singing out the chorus. We had over 50 people submit themselves singing the chorus and Michael mixed them all into the track with no auto-tuning – just some skillful mixing. We got people from Germany, Argentina, Mali, Puerto Rico and all over the United States in the mix. I think it is really special to have their mana involved in the project. While the project is really centered around Puna, I think it’s relevant for anyone who has been through some soul-testing experience.
Here is the link to the original video where I asked people to participate: https://www.facebook.com/DrewDanielsMusick/videos/303790250300918/
Recording “Get Back Up”
Working with producer Michael Surprenant has been a level up for me. He has a style very different from mine – he is professionally trained and experienced (Berkley/NYC Jazz scene), I grew up getting drunk and playing punk rock so I’m learning a lot from him. At the same time, I think he likes my raw connection to music. He is producing (and playing drums on) my full-length album Fertility from Firedue out this Summer. The album moves back and forth from folk to ska and reggae with heavy influences of hip hop, punk rock and soul intertwined throughout.
Photo credit: Nick Sopczak and Andrew Hara