Singer-songwriter Mark Erelli knows what it’s like to face adversity, and his newest single “Is It Enough” explores what it is that gets us through our longest days and hardest nights: love.
The latest single from his upcoming album, Lay Your Darkness Down – out February 3rd – is a soulful and honest look at when stripped away of all else, love remains.
Opening with acoustic guitar and soft percussion, the question “is it enough to be loved?” immediately beckons the listener into the song’s story. With his soulful voice and provocative lyrics, Erelli balances the grittiness of rock music with the tenderness of folk and Americana.
There’s a sense of urgency in the pleading electric guitar riffs that transitions smoothly into the dreamy, soaring melodies of the chorus. Hopefulness cuts through the somewhat haunting soundscape with lines like “What else do you need / What more could you want,” forcing us to reconsider the role that love plays in our lives.
Erelli can recall a performance in 2020 when he looked down at his guitar neck and could not see his fingers on the frets. Soon after, he was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative eye disease that can lead to complete blindness. Amidst this period of dramatic life changes, he clung on to his sense of creative agency by continuing to find solace and expression through songwriting.
Inspired by ‘70s icon Jeff Lynne’s meticulous approach to layering songs, Erelli brought a level of detail and intricacy to Lay Your Darkness Down that rivals his previous work.
But Erelli wants to make clear that his upcoming album is not simply about blindness; rather, it is a documentation of the artist’s reinvigorated lust for life. He recalls, “I could not have accessed the emotions and the observations that inspired these songs without realizing that I was losing my sight…. In some way, I am grateful for that.”
With its simple and thought-provoking lyrics, “Is It Enough” is a hopeful response to pain by reframing what is most important.