By Will Yannacoulias
April 30th La Ronge based singer-songwriter Dara Schindelka welcomed the arrival of spring with her latest single “Grass”. A powerful, emotional song about growth, finding peace, moving on and letting go, “Grass” has become an audience favourite during livestreams and live performances. Schindelka, who is also a writer for NSMZ, shared the inspiration for the song as well as some of the production details.
“Grass” was originally penned almost two years ago. Schindelka remembers that “this song was written in a reflective time for me in the summer of 2019. I was in a writer’s group chat and our theme was grass one week. Rather than a journal entry, I went to the piano and let the keys find their way into the idea. I am a sucker for walking bass lines so I let that drive the chord progression. The lyrics started out with the very word I was supposed to use as a theme, but very quickly turned into something deeper.”
Regina producer Kristopher Craig provided the musical accompaniment to Schindelka’s vocals and piano, with the final mix and master being done in the UK and the US. Schindelka shared “after taking the original piano and vocals off a live take from June 2020, Kristopher Craig started adding the instruments around it. We wanted it to feel warm and let the percussion and bass add to the song but not take away the lyrics driven feel. Getting it mixed by James Brumby out of the UK was a dream. He has been the sound engineer for the likes of Kylie Minogue among others and I was delighted to see what he would do with the tracks. Working through a pandemic was no issue as we would never have met in person anyways, and he really took the time to get the feel I was looking for. Kristopher also worked with Dale Proctor who is another gift to the music world now based in the US, and together they mastered the final mix.”
Schindelka fine tuned the song for some time before committing to a final recorded version, and waited for the perfect moment to release even after production was done. “Even after the recording was complete” she explained, “I wanted to let it sit with me for awhile. It has taken me 6 months before I felt ready to release it. There are times in your life when emotions and memories start coming up and these often find a place in one of my songs. This song was no exception. It came in a flood. Words and music came out across the piano and into my pen in that very afternoon. As with most writers, I sat on the piece for awhile. Over time I changed words here or there, worked on the bridge, and figured out an arrangement I liked, but the main song came out in that initial afternoon.”
“Grass has been a song that livestream or concert listeners often message me privately about after hearing it” Schindelka concluded. “The details in the song resonate with many people which is touching. Sharing something, and having it mean something to others, is a gift to all of us who share our creative side with a larger world.”
“Grass” is available on all streaming services, as well as on YouTube with a lyric video.
Photo courtesy Colin Hubick