“So this is midlife,” singer Bjorn Baillie ponders on the his latest release, “From M to M”.
Finding himself in his “40-something life,” the affable singer is once again releasing timeless music.
Back in the day, Baillie was the frontman for La Rocca, an indie favorite of mine. After two full length releases, he went solo, releasing the impressive Vista in 2016. Now he’s fronting The Jonah Medal, a project whose songs were born in quarantine and whose music, as usual, sound like lost classics from the ‘70s as The Jonah Medal takes its musical influence from such greats as Carole King and Joni Mitchell, the soulful lyricism of Crosby, Stills and Nash, and the humor of Randy Newman.
“Septembering” was actually recorded in Laurel Canyon and in Brighton in the UK.
"The song is about being in the middle of the mid-life storm,” Baillie points out. “You’re pulled every which way by the younger who need and rely on you, and the older who need you for a whole other set of reasons. I like the word September as a metaphor for middle-age. You’re no longer in your Spring-youth. So being in your 40’s is Septembering. The things that have come along in your life, the people who have become part of your family, and define who you are now. The responsibility and weight of those relationships is reflected in this song. The melody is one of the simplest but most instant of anything I’ve written. It feels like it has been around forever, but it just landed in my lap. A real gem."
With The Jonah Medal, the singer is feeling comfortable addressing the issues in his own life, in his friends’ lives, and the lives of his pers.
“I’m asking my own generation if they’re okay. Mid-life is here for so many of us. With older parents and young children… we’re the generation squeezed in the middle trying to hold it all together. That’s what I’m addressing, all following my lead to serve the song, with sincerity and warmth.”
The Jonah Medal reflects the musical and lyrical themes explored by Baillie throughout his career, injected with the clarity and heart of a man living a truly full life. Weathered optimism, clear-eyed understanding, the highs and lows of relationships, and adulthood, all represented in the lyrics, the sounds and the fabric of this music.
I for one can’t wait for more music to be released as it’s exactly what we need during these trying times.