After beginning a career in education, Nicholas D’Andrea, started to pursue a career in music in 2013 starting a band Nick D’ & the Believers. From 2013-16 they toured regionally and had songs featured on television shows, including Showtime’s Shameless. He also worked as a freelance songwriter, writing for music licensing, and publishing companies.
In 2016 he co-founded the band Doc Robinson. They released their debut ep Golden Daze in November 2016 and since then they released three full length albums with Deep End, Ring of Love and Travelogues, 3 ep’s and several singles. As support for CAAMP they went on two national tours, and have had songs featured on television shows, including Netflix Bojack Horseman. In 2019 he stepped away from the band to focus on his family and his work full time with a music based non profit, We Amplify Voices.
Columbus Ohio’s best kept indie secret, Nick D’Andrea is currently working on a full length album, Aslan, and plans to release it in March 2021.
Today Glide is excited to be premiering his newest single “Here I Am” from the upcoming LP. What stands out most right away is the texture and timbre of Nick’s voice, with each listen becoming more inviting, more heartfelt, more real. Accentuated by just acoustic guitar at first, but building into a strong canvas of keys and synths, this is an instantaneous modern pop song with just a hint of Beach Boys style genius. Written about letting go of old baggage, “those things that don’t serve us well” as he puts it, Nick sings words of wisdom, “I know I’ll learn my lesson a little farther down the line”. It’s one thing that this track sounds beautiful and well recorded, but “Here I Am” is clearly getting to the core of a much deeper truth. With the last poignant line echoing out “now I understand, this was always your plan”, we hear an embrace of something bigger than music, a call to God, a leap of faith.
Listen to the track and read our interview with Nick below…
Why don’t you start off by telling us what “Here I Am” is about in your own words, you seem to be tackling the great unknown with these lyrics?
I think the best way I can put it is the song is about experiencing grace and mercy, and feeling it wash away all the different kinds of baggage that can accumulate over a lifetime. I tried to just put that feeling into words, and also acknowledge that i’m not really in control, and that feeling of grace and mercy is the gift that comes from knowing I’m not in control. Most importantly it’s just saying thank you to the higher power, and offering up whatever I have to give for him to make the most out of.
Give us a sneak peak on your upcoming album Aslan, what are you most excited about for its release?
The album as a whole feels like it’s telling one long story, which is something that was really important to me. I love when a record feels like one complete thought, and because of what I was learning about and working on in myself while making this record I think that’s how it ended up. A lot of the songs have to do with spirituality, and self re-discovery. I went through a pretty low point the year before, and this record was my way of sorting out all of the different threads that I was following in coming out of that dark place. I wanted it to run the whole range of emotions from despair to joy, and I think it’s all in there. I’m excited for it all to exist together in one place so people can experience it as one whole piece. Releasing singles kind of feels like putting out random chapters of a book.
“Here I Am” harkens back to indie-folk from the past decade, but it has a much less sterile and over-produced feel to it. Where was this recorded and what were you setting out to accomplish sonically on this track?
Thank you! I’ve definitely been guilty of that in the past and this song was immediately very special to me so i wanted to be very careful not to make that mistake. It came out really quickly one day. I was visiting family in Florida at the time, and I had brought my recording gear with me. So the night after I wrote it I just took over the guest room and spent the night recording it. The room had really high ceilings and everything I tracked that night felt right, so I ended up keeping those takes for the final. I think with certain songs it helps to catch them while the idea is really fresh. I’ve lost the spark behind a lot of songs from waiting too long to record them, or spending too long trying to get a “perfect” take. I wanted it to just feel honest and real, so all of the production choices were made along those lines. I sent it to Seth Bain, the bass player for the record, the next day and he laid down the bass and those nice high harmonies on the chorus, and then that was all it needed. Matt Vinson always does a really nice job with letting a song be what it is , and never trying to over polish or take away from what’s happening naturally. He’s the perfect person to work with on this song and the whole record, he really just understood without any explanation needed, what it should be.
How does “Here I Am” compare with, or relate to, the rest of Aslan?
I think it’s the cornerstone of the album. The intention behind it is kind of a crystallization of the intention behind the whole album, and the message from it echoes in all the other songs on the album. I think it’s probably the best ambassador of the batch for what the record is about.
Anything else you’d like your listeners to know?
Sure! I believe with all of my heart and soul in what these songs are about, and I’m grateful to be the conduit for their messages.