GRAMMY® nominated singer songwriter and multi-instrumentalist JP Saxe and GRAMMY® winner Maren Morris released their new collaboration single “Line by Line” in mid-January. JP Saxe best known for his track “If The World Was Ending” featuring Julia Michaels, released late 2019 and GRAMMY® nominated for “Song of the Year”, said it was “surreal” working with Maren Morris on this latest track, as she is one of his favourite artists.
Written in Nashville, the song explains the difficult process of trying to write about such overwhelming and complicated feelings that come with new loves and old loves, and how as with any songwriting approach you just have to go one line at time, getting your thoughts and feelings down. However, limiting yourself to four chords and three minutes in capturing the kaleidoscope of complex emotions of human relationships is futile but… songwriters try and do it for us anyway.
Unsurprisingly for the two songwriters both say the act of writing this song together was almost effortless. As a result, the lyrics are very conversational, and its mid-tempo country serenade style fits perfectly with the mood of the song. Early on the track is reminiscent of Ed Sheeran’s “Think Out Loud” with its stripped back electric guitar and keyboard pads. This sets up the vibe and its layered vocals from the pair help to build the song to the pre-chorus.
The track was written with Jimmy Robbins and production by Ryan Marrone. Maren says of the two days writing with JP, “I have always loved being contemplative of the artist vs. muse relationship in songs”…”Line by Line acts as a promise that I’ll never be done writing about my muse in this life because he can’t be summed up in one song.”
“Writing that day with JP was the most fluid, inspiring session. He’s a lyrical faucet.”
JP commented, “As songwriters we spend a lot of our lives trying to bottle up a feeling into a song, and often, the biggest feelings, the best ones … the complicated, detailed, messy, incredible ones … just aren’t going to fit.” Hence the lyrics,
“Love too big for a love song
If I tried to sum it up I know I’d get it wrong
Sometimes if it don’t sound right
I apologize, I just said it ’cause it rhymed
Four chords, three minutes, you never fit in it
So I just take you line by line
Ooh, ooh-ooh, ooh-ooh
I’ll be writing about you for the rest of my life
Line by line by line by line
Line by line”
A mellow, chilled ‘Sunday night’ track, the lyrics are clearly relatable to songwriters and those that aspire to write about their loves. The vibe and harmonies draw the listener in so that it just might connect wider than that. Give it a listen and let me know.
Both JP and Maren have new music due for release in the coming months, with a full album coming out this year from JP and Maren now recording her next album with Greg Kurstin. You can catch up with all their music and events right now online.
Review by Ann Kenney