Ever wondered what the best early 60s teen tragedy song never actually written (until now) would sound like if done by two great singers and some loon pretending to be a lost 80s indie band? Look no further… ‘Gabrielle‘ by Bruno Rocha, Jenny Stevens and the Empty Mirrors will be released on 10th September.
What’s the song about?
“The lyrics lament the passing of the singer’s girlfriend, whose voice answers him. It’s a bit gothic and draws on early 60s teen tragedy songs – the Shangri-Las, Ricky Valence, John Leyton etc.”
“Since everyone says the Empty Mirrors sounds a bit 80s indie, I thought it’d be interesting to do a song that would sound like an 80s indie band doing a cover of a ‘lost’ teen tragedy number. You’ll notice that the vocal arrangement bears more than a passing resemblance to that of ‘Johnny Remember Me’.”
Is this release different from your previous releases?
“Yes, it’s a deliberate attempt to write in a particular style which I haven’t really done before. I used a cycle progression for the chorus, which works brilliantly in terms of allowing Bruno and Jenny to let rip with the vocals.”
What’s your favourite memory of writing and/or recording?
The best part was getting Jenny’s vocals. The song already sounded good with Bruno’s lead, but what Jenny added made the song complete and perfect, like a blurry polaroid snapshot suddenly coming into focus.”
How and when did you meet?
“I “met” Bruno Rocha when we were both following a course provided by the Songwriting Academy I”met” Jenny Stevens on Twitter. Met in quotes because we’ve never met in person. I was so hugely impressed by each of them as musicians, songwriters and singers and as people that I managed to overcome my natural shyness and get in touch.”
How did the collaboration come about?
“I’ve been collaborating with both Jenny and Bruno on various songs, so this was another in the ‘to do’ pile. It was great to get their superb voices together on the same track for a second time, they also duet on ‘Zombie Love’. I explained the idea behind the song and both were up for it and did a wonderful job.”
Who wrote/recorded what?
“On this particular song, I wrote the lyrics and recorded the backing track, Bruno sang lead and Jenny supplies the ghostly voice of the deceased lover.”