For most of my adult life, I’ve held the belief that humanity is right around the corner from something transformative. If we could only see that our separateness is an illusion, then a future of global cooperation and interdependence would be undeniable. As the coronavirus locked down the world, I felt this long-held belief inside of me becoming a reality right before my eyes. Of course I was not immune to the suffering around me, but I was overwhelmingly inspired seeing humanity united in common cause. We were witnessing that rapid political and behavioral change IS possible. This feeling was no longer a mirage off in the distance; it was not some hope just around the corner. The crossroad is here; the tipping point is now. Just as the dolphins returned to the canals in Venice, I felt a sense of boundlessness to who we might become on the other side of this storm, now that the proof was everywhere: we are living in a house made out of each other.
The question of “How do we protect those susceptible to a virus?” invites you toward “How do we care for vulnerable people in general?” Compassion, just like fear, is contagious. This song is a compassionate invitation to take inventory of our society, strip down the superficial, and see what is worth saving and what can be built back better. “The Coronation” marks the emergence of our collective unconscious into consciousness and the transcendence of compulsion into choice. I look at the last year of lockdown as sort like an extended rehab healing us from the story of separation and offering us the courage to forge a new crown and become the rulers of that which had ruled us.
My co-producer Ryan Hommel (Amos Lee, Heather Maloney) and I wanted to bottle up the sense of “a reunion” in this track, so we set out to build this song using instruments from everywhere in the world. The chorus includes a Dan Bau (a Vietnamese zither) & Viola Da gamba (a gut stringed member of the violin family). Griffin Goldsmith (Dawes) did all the drum programming and added percussion and Cynthia Tolson (Demi Lovato) played all the violins.