A Swiss-Canadian songwriter based in New York, Jesse Marchant is no stranger to headlining tours throughout the U.S. and Canada.
The singer, songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist has opened up for Mercury Prize-Winning band Alt-J, as well as Nathaniel Rateliff, Local Natives, Other Lives, Sondre Lerche, and other marquee names. Not to mention some of his songs have been featured on Emmy-Award-winning shows such as Grey’s Anatomy, Shameless, The Blacklist, Parenthood, Eyewitness, and Bones. Needless to say, Marchant is a seasoned and prominent force in the songwriting world, and his new single is a clear display of his talents.
The single, “Go Lightly,” opens gently with delicate and dissonant piano, soon to allow his entrancing voice to carry the listener throughout. The soft and gentle verses contrast with the more accompanied chorus, adding brass and rhythmic percussion to Marchant’s dynamic vocals. Emotion and passion ooze through his words and fingers as he plays along with, “No we don’t live so quietly now, the lies have followed me around…A child is lying in the dark, not knowing there is much to escape”. The song is a collection of thoughts about everything that weighs us down and traps us in a dark hole, but still being able to see the silver path above it all.
Flashing back, the 2010’s were an accomplished decade for Marchant and his music. His adored 2010 debut album, Not Even in July, opens up with a beautiful acoustic instrumental, leading into “Cleo’s Song”-the storytelling of one who is stuck in darkness and would do anything to see the light. His raw and soothing vocals hum along as the lyrics read, “And every time you catch a sight/Of your reflection you can’t decide/If you should cry or if it’s time to laugh”.
Stray Ashes followed up in 2012, taking on a more somber and gloomy setting, with the song “Winter Ghosts” carrying the tone of the album. The eerie theme can be found within the lyrics, “Winter came as a load, frozen down to the bone/I lived here half asleep, walking nights to the road”. In his 2014 alternative project, Jesse Marchant, listeners found a little bit of a country rock flare added throughout the tracks.
His 2017 EP, Brightest of Feathers, hones in on the subtle yet noticeable and important nuances within the instrumentals that give the songs personality. The tracks are lyrically complex with stories and hidden meanings of love and heartbreak woven throughout, especially in the title track. Leading into his most recent full-length album, Illusion of Love captures nature as well as memories that we can all find ourselves reflecting back on. “Sister, I” has gained almost seven million Spotify streams, recalling hard times but the blessings to still be found as he sings, “Desperate times and their measures/Rely upon the hope of your child for your own”.
His music doesn’t stop there, with more singles released in between the full-length projects, and stripped-back versions of Illusion of Love that can also be found on his YouTube channel. Listeners will find the sound and acoustics to be reminiscent of Jim James and his band My Morning Jacket, blending a dreamy, powerful vocals with rock with a more alternative singer-songwriter style.