Song-by-Song: ‘Honesty’ by Jake Isaac
The multi-instrumentalist and songwriter from south London is back with his second album, here he takes us through each track
Aself-taught multi-instrumentalist who was born and raised in south London, Jake Isaac’s career started as a session musician and songwriter for artists such as Gabrielle and the boyband Blue. Those foundations helped him grow into life as a solo artist, with debut album Our Lives released in 2017 – his rich vocals and modern soul sound rightfully taking centre stage.
Isaac has now returned with his second album, Honesty. Written in March 2020, during the first two weeks of lockdown in the UK, the album features guests artists such as India Arie, Mumu Fresh and Samm Henshaw and is a big stride forward. A stripped-back sound helps these ruminations on identity and openness truly hit the mark. Hooked by the record, we asked its creator to reveal a little more…
HER (A VOICENOTE)
This was a piece where I wanted to create a context for the album and the narrative in the album. I wanted to touch upon the lack of communication, the hurt felt and yet the beauty in love that these songs came from.
This is basically about me knowing I’m not good enough for love. Imposter syndrome in relationships for me has always been a thing. To be honest I’m still trying to figure it all out. Musically I wanted to lean into my ‘soul’ roots and create something that was a lot more romantic and raw.
EYES FOR YOU
It’s a song about commitment. I think I’ve always been one who’s doubted my commitment levels and in the past, that’s been a justified point… But this song is completely about falling first and about continuing to fall in love.
This was completely about reminiscing about driving around London late at night on a date in the summer when it was still hot and there was such a buzz. I wanted to make a song where people could hear it and remember their own good times.
This song is again anchored in reminiscing about a love and feeling what once was. I really felt like I wanted to write a song about communicating the value of the one you love.
HIM (A VOICENOTE)
I’ve often found myself as this guy who’s trying to do what’s right and make peace, but struggling to do so. Again I just wanted to feed into the narrative of the album and create a context through which the listener could paint a picture of their own experience.
TALK ABOUT IT
I’m an ambivert. I’m outgoing but a lot of the time I like to be an introvert. This song comes from that. Even though there’s a temptation for me to back out of conflicts and tough situations, that often can cause more damage than good. This song is basically about that.
This song started off with me trying to write a wedding song but ended up being more focused on commitment and longevity again. To be honest, I wasn’t complaining, so I just kept going with it.
This song simply is what it says on the tin… sticking to the promises made in the beginning. Sometimes I actually feel like this song wasn’t actually written for someone else to appreciate, but rather I feel like I wrote it for me to remember the promises I made.
NEVER FORGET (THE END)
I really wanted this piece to focus on reconciliation. The truth I’ve found is that no matter what process we go through, as long as we are on the same team, love stands a better chance of winning.