Rebecca Nelson of Faeland’s Songwriting Survival Kit
Fuelled by a cup of cacao, one half of the Bristol group Faeland shares her crucial songwriting kit with us
There’s nothing we like better than to take a look at the essential items that help get the creative juices flowing for our favourite songwriters. In recent editions of our magazine we’ve seen inside the writing rooms of Frank Turner and Nerina Pallot and discovered that cats and poetry books are just as important to them as pianos and notepads.
The latest artist to share their #songwritingsurvivalkit with us is Rebecca Nelson, half of the Bristol-based folk duo Faeland. The pair of Nelson and Jacob Morrison have recently released their debut album, All My Swim. It is a beautiful collection of modern folk songs underpinned with some classic writing. Such is the LP’s charm that we were desperate to learn a little more about the group’s writing process.
Thankfully, Nelson has revealed to us the indispensable aids she can’t do without…
“I’ve been writing songs since I was eight years old and my songwriting kit hasn’t changed all that much, apart from the guitar has replaced my old family piano as my songwriting instrument of choice”
1. Waghorn Guitar
“This guitar was handmade in Bristol and is the best I’ve ever played. When writing a new song I approach it very much like one would fishing. I sit, I wait and I see what comes. This guitar just asks to be played all of the time and everything sounds great on it. This particular instrument seems full of songs. When I brought it home for the first time Jacob (also of Faeland) began strumming it and within ten minutes we’d written Silent Story almost in its entirety.”
“I need refreshment when I’m writing so I can settle in and get into flow. My sustenance of choice has to be a hot cup of cacao. A hot chocolate won’t do – I need the pure stuff! It’s a bit of a ritual and always gets the creative juices flowing.”
“I’m really picky when it comes to which pen to use for my writing but you just cannot beat the humble biro.”
“My favourite notebook is a Moleskine – it has been ever since a friend at uni introduced me to them. I love writing in them and I appreciate their strong covers; I have drawers full of old songwriting notebooks which have been loved to bits and are completely tattered and falling apart.”
“Ok I don’t want to get overly poetic here and I considered leaving this one out, but at the end of the day I just cannot write a song worth listening to without it. Be it the happy heartache of a good day or the ache for something lost, heartache is the fuel of good songwriting. I love the alchemy of how a sad event or difficult life experience can be taken to a guitar, re-spun and woven into something beautiful.”
All My Swim is out now. To find out more, head to faeland.co.uk