When I was a kid I listened to a lot of Nat King Cole. His smooth vocals and almost confidential tone were part of my early exposure to jazz. I also listened endlessly to an album by his daughter, Natalie Cole, whose versions of “Nature Boy” and “Lush Life” still dominate my memory.
When I started writing the songs for this album, it was inevitable that these experiences would colour my style. I think of “They Say” as a song that Nat could have sung. It would have suited him perfectly, in lyrics and arrangement. It’s a tribute of sorts to that style of jazz, and the way it made me feel.
I wrote the lyrics for this track with a good deal of chuckling. There’s a verse about a bicycle riding couple in a park that was taken straight out of a summer walk I did one evening. The reference to a neighbor’s child is about the uncanny ability of children to read things we never tell them. As always, while these verses are mine, I hope they sound like a feeling you can relate to. This song was written with a smile on my face, and I hope it puts a smile on yours