dream giver redux | songs | released | honest town

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honest town


composer
Written by: Cook / Kerr / Burchill


publisher
Universal Music / JKMC–Bucks Music Group Ltd / Hornall Brothers Music Ltd


background
"Like Waterfront, Oh Jungeland and Broken Glass Park, Honest Town is another that grew out of a nostalgia for our hometown. But these songs are written for you. You can transpose the words into your life, no matter where you live, or where you're from. - Jim, 24th September 2014

Honest Town was originally written for The Return Of Lostboy, the second Lostboy! AKA album. "Two more demoed and how prolific it's all been. First time I worked with Iain Cook, delighted with results. A serious talent and a real pleasure to work with him. More to come for sure. The two songs demoed tonight were Honest Town and Jerusalem - both gave of that "hairs standing on the back of the neck" sensation... with the latter having a strong Sons And Fascination vibe. Honest Town simply made my eyes go misty!" - Jim, 7th October, 2010

It was released on the Big Music album and became the lead single.

"Back in Real World Studios. Working on Blood Diamonds, Concrete And Cherry Blossom, Honest Town and an updated Planet Zero. It's all good, very good." - Jim, 31st May 2012

It was first played live, or rather soundchecked, at the private ElectroSet gig at Annabels, London in April 2014. It received its radio debut on The Ken Bruce Show on BBC Radio Two on the 24th September 2014.


JK: "I'm pretty confident whoever hears this album, particularly people who like the album - I'm pretty confident that one of the highlights will be Honest Town."

CB: "We're doing a song called Honest Town which is a collaboration with Iain Cook from Chvrches. Beautiful song, really, really emotional."

JK: "Iain was introduced to me by a great associate of the band called Martin Hanlin. He introduced me to Iain probably about four years ago when Chvrches was just coming together. And at the time I was spending more time in Glasgow than normal because – unfortunately – my mother had been suffering and she was coming towards the end of her life really. And I wanted to be around as much as possible. However, she wasn't quite keen about me sitting around doing nothing –she would much rather that... She was happy to see me but she wanted to know that I was working, that I was pushing on, that I was inspired and conveniently Iain was situated half a mile away – so we got together and it was just one of these things that just clicked and we ended up writing about ten to twelve songs maybe. One of the first melodies Iain played me was the riff for Honest Town. When I heard it instantly there was something about the emotion in it that really grabbed me and it was an emotional time for me anyway – you know thinking about the backdrop and being back in Glasgow and the reason why."

JK: "The lyric itself was a phrase my mother used in one of the last conversations I had with her about a week before she passed away, we... the whole of the UK was covered in the worst snow storm, the worst weather circumstances that the country had seen for decades – and Glasgow itself had ground to a standstill. Everyone was saying 'Don't go out unless it's absolutely necessary.' The snow was up to... whatever. But my mum had it in her mind to go out in what became the last time."

JK: "We had this really magical trip actually. She wanted to go through town... she wanted to go for a drive through town. My Dad wasn't keen on taking her – he was afraid of what the weatherman was saying. But I said 'Let's go' and it just happened in circumstances that the journey we went on was all landmarks of her life and indeed my life of growing up in Glasgow. And you know how it is anywhere when it snows and everything grinds to a halt and the place becomes dreamlike and it becomes really static – apart from the occasional falling snow and it was like we had the world to ourselves and obviously driving very slowly and she was talking away – she was talking about her childhood, she was talking about the city she grew up in, she was talking about ourselves, our family as kids and stuff, and in the course of this conversation the phrase "Honest Town" just came up. She used it. And when I went along to Iain's studio later that night, I said to him 'I think I've got a lyric for this' and it's one of those songs that... we always say that the great songs almost seem to write themselves and they fall together in minutes and that was the case with Honest Town."

Band Interviews
Big Music Deluxe DVD


MH: So, Jim, we're going to talk about a song which I know it really important to you and we're talking about rehearsals at the moment at a place called Gorbals Sound in Glasgow where we grew up and the place where we grew up, let's talk about the song called Honest Town. I'm sure you've got a lot to say about it because it's a very important song to you.
JK: Well it is. I don't hesitate to say that you yourself are crucial to the song because I should explain that the song Honest Town is written – well it's primarily about our home town Glasgow and it's written about the generation that raised us, our parent's generation and that goes for your mum and dad as well Martin but specifically the story of the song came out of the fact that my mum passed away four years ago and in the weeks leading up to it I had come back home to Glasgow – we knew that the light was getting dim and I'd come back to Glasgow to be around, specifically for that, I'd come back home.
JK: But typical of my mum, she didn't want me sitting around moping and she was never happier than when I was busy and being creative and working and such and at the time, you yourself was in Glasgow and you also said "Well, why you're here why don't you come down and meet this kid called Iain Cook" who you had found in previous years and you'd always been encouraging me – as you have with others as well – to go down and see what these kids have got, see if there's anything in common, see if we could write a song... not for anything specific, it might be their album, it might be our album, it might be a solo album, it might be a movie soundtrack – who knows? But anyway, you did a great thing that night when you took me down to Iain Cook's because it began a relationship with this fellow who I should now say, for those who it might ring a bell, Iain is in a band called Chvrches who at the time I was working with him, Chvrches was just embryonic, it was just an idea that Iain was just putting together. Of course now, they've probably played in your neck of the woods half-a-dozen times Martin and they've had a top ten album in the States which they're very proud of. JK: But, anyway, you introduced me to Iain and in about two weeks we probably wrote about ten songs together – all in various shapes and forms and all to varying degrees of successes as well, but one of the songs that came out of it was Honest Town. It just had this melody from day one that both you and I found rather haunting, bewitching, sad, but also with a great feeling of hope and I ended up writing a lyric to Iain's melody based on the last journey that my mum made really because it was a few days before she passed away and she asked me to drive her into town and there was a snowstorm – or there had been a snowstorm, the snow had ceased but they were advising everyone "Stay in. Don't to go out unless absolutely necessary" and she – as sometimes people do – she came bounding down the stairs looking better than she'd ever looked for months and she said "I want to do out." And my Dad said "You can't go out. " She said "No. I want to go out" and she looked at me and said "I want to go out. Take me out into town. I want go into town and buy some clothes for Christmas because I'll be going to the Christmas dance." And I just looked at her and I said "Great. Let's go."
JK: And it just so happened that the drive from our neck of the woods into the centre of town where my mum wanted to go, by coincidence, by happenstance, was though many of the landmarks of her life, of my life, of our lives together – where we went to school, where she met my dad, where she worked as a factory girl, the hospital where I was born even and it gave her a great chance to reminisce. And she spoke about how much she loved her life and how much she loved her city and she used the phrase "Honest Town." She said that it was an honest town and people have been asking me when you write songs as personal as this, is it really hard to let it all go and I have to tell you that songs like that write themselves – you don't get a choice in the matter. People say you should write about what you know and certainly one of the good things about getting older is that you have experienced things first hand usually and you've experienced universal themes – we all do at some point and loss is one of them and the song kind of wrote itself.
MH: Before I play the track and I'm looking forward to hearing this because it's such a great song – a couple of little bits to the story that you're not really aware of because you're so busy singing and getting on with stuff and taking care of people as usual, but I remember taking you to Iain's and we went in and we did Honest Town and you did the vocal back to Iain and I and both of us just looked across the room and he was like "Wow." Because he hadn't worked with you before, he hadn't heard you singing and we just walked into that studio and you did it. And that was the beginning of it - I don't think it really changed much vocally from there because it was absolutely spot on.
MH: But the other part of it, and I'm not going to let you interrupt me Jim, as this is important: I sat in your house plenty of times with your mum and dad and I remember about that time your Dad was always saying "Get him out of here. He should be working." That's your dad, he's amazing at just getting us to do things; but your mum came to talk to me and goes "You know what? You need to get my boy out working. He's in here and I don't want him worrying about me. He's got to work. You get him out of the door and get him to work." And it was just like you were sitting there and I was so humbled by the generosity and it was incredible. And then to go after that conversation to a few weeks later putting down Honest Town it was just "There it is. There's the completion of that circle." We've always been pushed by our parents. We're always really proud of the way they brought us up – really proud of them, but the moment was amazing. Incredible.
JK: Yeah, these are people that gave us everything. I know the same with you Martin but my Mum and Dad gave us the first couple hundred pounds – Charlie Burchill's Mum and Dad also to be said – to start Simple Minds, to make demos - they were worried, they didn't quite understand the world we were going into but they knew that they'd have to shoot us to stop us. And rather than do that they decided to back us. I do remember – I think there was two takes – actually on the version that's released on Big Music, a lot of the vocal is, well you well know, but a lot of the vocal is that original take. And I think we did it a couple of times that night in Iain's basement and I do remember the one thing you got me to phrase something different in the chorus – I can't remember exactly what it was but it was the making of it.
MH: Thank you. The many comments that you take on – we've always had this discussion and it's always the same and I remember talking to producers that you've worked with and the vocal that we've always talked about – you know She's A River the vocals in that – and as a vocalist you always underestimate yourself – and you can't see it and this was another great vocal and I'm really proud to be part of this song and get to play it. So this is a track from Big Music and this is called Honest Town.

Martin Hanlin
The Real McCoy
KX 93.5




lyrics
Wounded, they say you got wounded,
Say you're still haunted.
Haunted by all this.

Deep there, somewhere down deep there.
It can still overbear,
In ways so discreet.

But there's one thing I'll point out you’ll see,
And I hope that you’ll find these words comforting.

When the light settles down on Honest Town you’ll see,
There's still something between you and me.
And when we turn on our ways back to honest days you’ll find,
There’s still something between you and me.

Feel it, I know you still feel it.
Must I repeat it again,
Till the healing is over.

But there's one thing I want you to see,
And I hope that you’ll find these words comforting.
When the light settles down here in Honest Town you’ll see,
There’s still something between you and me.

And when we turn on our way, back to honest days you’ll find,
There’s still something between you and me.
Cause when the light settles down here in Honest Town you’ll see,
There’s still something between you and me.

And when we turn on our ways back to honest days you’ll find,
There’s still something between you and me.

Something, still something.
Something between, still something between you and me.
Something, still something.
Something between you and me.
Something, still something.
Something between you and me.




discography
Radio Edit (3:48)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety
ISRC: GBZ8N1400080

Honest Town Promo CDR Honest Town Promo CDR Honest Town Promo CD Honest Town French Promo CD Honest Town French Promo CD Honest Town Australian Promo CD Honest Town Japanese Promo CD

Album Version (4:44)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety

Big Music 5 Track Sampler CD Big Music Promo CD Honest Town Promo CDR Honest Town Promo CD Big Music Promo CD Big Music French Promo CD Big Music French Promo CDs Honest Town Dutch Promo CD Big Music Hungrian Promo CD Big Music German Promo CD Big Music CD Big Music Limited Edition Deluxe CD Big Music Limited Edition LP
Iain Cook Remix Radio Edit (3:30)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety

Blindfolded: Promo CD Honest Town Promo CDR Honest Town Promo CD Honest Town French Promo CD
Instrumental (4:44)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety

Honest Town Promo CDR Honest Town Promo CD
Live Version (February-May 2015) (4:53)
Recorded: Big Music Tour 2015
Recorded By: Olivier Gerard
Mixed By: Olivier Gerard at Jet Studios

Live Big Music Tour 2015 Live Big Music Tour 2015

Johnson Somerset Remix (10:15)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety
Remixed by Johnson Somerset

Big Music Johnson Somerset Remixes Promo CD Big Music Johnson Somerset Remixes Dutch Promo CD



videography
Album Version (4:44)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety

Honest Town promo DVD Honest Town promo DVD Honest Town promo DVD
Live Version (7th April 2015) (5:02)
Recorded: Usher Hall, Edinburgh, UK


Big Music YouTube

Johnson Somerset Remix (10:15)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety
Remixed by Johnson Somerset

Honest Town Remix promo video



sessions
Chris Evans, BBC Radio Two: 26th September 2014 (Acoustic version)
Billy Sloan, Radio Clyde: 2nd November 2014 (Acoustic version)



downloads
Album Version (4:44)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety

Honest Town Download
Johnson Somerset Remix (10:15)
Produced by Andy Wright, Gavin Goldberg and Simple Minds
Mixed by Gavin Goldberg
Assisted by Lewis Chapman
Additional Programming by Iain Cook and Steve Osborne
Additional Engineering by Tom Dalgety
Remixed by Johnson Somerset

Big Music Johnson Somerset Remixes Download



live history
Big Music European Tour: 2015
Big Music Summer Tour: 2015
Big Music Winter Tour: 2015
Big Music Western Asia: 2016