Friday, January 26, 2024

Connection, Collaboration, And Exceptionalism Come To Light In Sam Fender And Noah Kahan’s New Track ‘Homesick’

The fusion of artists has always held a hallowed place in the music industry, with such vast numbers of fans eagerly awaiting each record from their favourite musicians. Often, countdowns, theories, and pure joy overrun a multitude of fanbases when the question of collaboration is thrown into public awareness. 

The impressive forces of Noah Kahan and Sam Fender can now be exclusively added to that list of triumphant collaborations within this prestigious industry. 

Alluding to a partnership with an originally anonymous artist, Kahan teased his song ‘Homesick’ as being re-created alongside an artist that “inspired [the] entire record”, referring to his newest album ‘Stick Season’. Fans speculated in the comment section of his social media that the anonymised musician was Sam Fender, and were overjoyed to hear the confirmation of this just over a week later.

The original song sported lyrics in reference to Kahan’s upbringing in Vermont, and he sang with a deep sense of longing versus belonging. There is stagnancy in staying in a place you are so familiar with, but a great struggle to leave at the same time. This dichotomy is paralleled in the additional version, in which Fender replaces the lyrics of “Well, I’m tired of dirt roads / Named after high school friend’s grandparents” with lyrics that represent his own upbringing in the North of England: “Well, I grew up in the fallout from the riots in the ‘90s”. With both lines coming from similar but alternative places, the idea of being shaped by your memories, your childhood and experiences stays at the core of the track. It allows listeners to hear these incredibly heartfelt admissions from both artists and appreciate the beauty in their differences. 

The pair find huge inspiration in each other’s music, one of the crucial reasons behind the perfect emotional balance of this new version. The track mimics a call from one to the other, from an American finding stagnancy in a hometown so far from the vast dreams they once had to a Geordie facing the agony of the riots in 1990s Northern England. As a result of this similarity, fans can really get a sense of passion and devotion in the new version, as well as the incredibly crafted collaboration at the heart of it. 

Overall, the track is an intensely brilliant piece. It not only maintains its acclaimed integrity, but Fender’s additional perspective brings such a great voice to the general population. It allows for additional experiences and references to be represented musically, and of course, gives us the chance to hear the beautiful vocals of both Fender and Kahan in harmony with one another. 

Abby Tapping


Image: ‘Homesick (with Sam Fender)’ Official Single Cover

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