Michael League
So Many Me
Track By Track

Sentinel Species
When we're in a downward spiral, we can sometimes use those around us- friends, family, lovers- as a kind of canary in our own toxic, emotional coalmine. But often, the canaries revel in the feeling of victimhood. This song speaks about this duality.

Me, Like You
This is about empathy, but in its most distorted form. It’s really about insecurity driving someone to want to be someone else, someone they admire and think is perfect. So a part of the song is coming from a place of talking about this ugly, jealous feeling that is wrapped in admiration or bad love, and the desire to basically model yourself after them, or even put yourself inside of them. It can definitely be tilted to the stalker/skin-wearer psychotic direction. The other side of it comes from a bunch of articles I read about unbelievably rich people, including a billionaire horse breeder who has successfully cloned a horse for polo, who are actively working to figure out a way to use technology to either greatly elongate their lives, clone themselves, or preserve their bodies in a living state until a time in which immortality is a real possibility. To me, the fundamental issue governing all of these different characters is the inability to accept ourselves as who we are and the cards life deals us.

Right Where I Fall
People deal with anxiety, sadness, anger, stress, or any other self-destructive emotion in different ways. Some need comfort and consolation, some need attention and validation, and others need to crash and burn on their own. While outgoing, I’ve noticed a personal tendency to keep serious distance from people I love when I feel like things are falling apart; largely to spare them the trouble of dealing with the nastier and darker stuff that lives inside. Over the last few years, I’ve made a very deliberate attempt to turn this around, but when external factors penetrate through to these uglier emotions, my first instinct is still to isolate and deal with it on my own. This song started as an idea on a piano in a studio in Lisbon (while I was there producing another record) but the lyrics and concept emerged during Spain's very intense quarantine.

Since You’ve Been by
Sometimes we're comfortable with what we have, until something or someone precious (or toxic) from our past reappears in our life. This is about drowning in the past instead of living in the present.

I Wonder Who You Know
I'm fascinated by those who live double lives, and generally very curious about exactly why people wake up in the morning, if not for what it appears to be.

Touch Me
This is the last song I wrote for the record, and considering it was finished in the 9th week of quarantine, it makes sense that it has to do with the importance of physical touch. These months have, for me, reinforced the idea that humans are nothing more than animals and subject to the same essential and social needs of any other species. I read a bit about scientific studies done on the benefits and communicative properties of touch (including a very interesting experiment by Dacher Keltner that showed a remarkable degree of accuracy in communicating a specific emotion from nothing other than touching someone’s arm through a hole in a wall) and was shocked to see how many healthy internal processes it induces, from the release of oxytocin to a reduction in cardiovascular stress to improvement in the function of the immune system. But really, I was fascinated by the idea that an external action can elicit such a wide variety of internal ones, specifically emotionally. Essentially, it’s a loop. And in many cases, it’s the most effective way to help isolated or introverted people connect with someone else. But in addition to all of this, it’s the first language we speak (and stays a universal one), it’s probably the sense that creates the most moral/ethical difficulty in our lives (not to mention the religious guilt that becomes associated with it), and its properties persist across species. Also nice that it doesn’t cost anything.

Best Of All Time
This is really just coming from the realization that a lot of what we are fed as children is simply propaganda. Growing up hearing that the USA is the “greatest country on earth” is normal for us in the states. Happy smiley faces. Everything is perfect! Ignore the ugly stuff. This has never been so obviously proven wrong as right now, watching the nation prioritize money and the economy over human lives, dying in the midst of a pandemic, not to mention how visible the gap is between classes in the midst of an economic disaster. That said, I don’t want this to be a hopeless song, so I’m really attacking the perspective of people who just throw their hands up in the air.

In Your Mouth
Politicians often foment the actualization of some of our ugliest impulses as humans. This song is about the desire to return the favor.

Ever The Actor
We have so many people inside of each of us, entire casts of characters that we choose to bring on stage depending on the moment. This song is about the desire to find the protagonist in a sea of extras.

Most people feel something when they’re near a fire- something distinct, nostalgic, primal. The ancient tradition of it is profound, but perhaps most striking is the process of watching once-living matter burn, turn to ash, and return to the earth- a journey that we all will replicate in one way or another. For me personally, several of the more cathartic moments of my life passed while sitting in front of one, so I’ve developed an association with fires and reflection. Being next to one cuts a direct path for me through the fog of modern problems and distractions (most of them laughable when looked at in greater context) and cleans up the kind of artificial mess in my mind. I have a serious tendency to get caught up in work, in moving things forward, to become machine-like in meeting objectives and ultimately, living. I can be a zombie in that way. This song speaks of our ability to get caught up in the strange and modern constructs of our lives, to get stuck in our little lanes- and the way in which being fireside, whether physically or metaphorically, reminding us of our roots- can help us break out of that.

The Last Friend
In this song, I’m trying to look at death in a different way. Rather than an event in a specific moment in time, death is personified here as a benevolent companion, present throughout our lives as the guardian of our brightest and darkest moments.

For more information, please contact Krista Williams, Colin Lodewick or Carla Sacks 212.741.1000 at Sacks & Co.

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