The Spirit Indestructible
By Nelly Furtado
When I started this musical journey I wasn't sure of where I would end up, as I had just finished touring my Spanish album and was tentative about singing in English again.
I was seriously considering retiring from my career as a pop musician and pursuing other music-related and creative endeavors.
Slowly, but surely, I began to record again and eventually found a new freedom within my voice and an overwhelming sense of excitement about making pop music.
That is the excitement you hear on The Spirit Indestructible. Nostalgia is a huge theme. All my old memories suddenly became crystal clear to me, and I found myself re-visiting my past in a fresh and colourful way, on songs such as "Parking Lot", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, where I detail good times in my hometown, sort of like my own take on "Summer Of 69'". On "Big Hoops", my swagger-in-spades, rhyme-writing 14-year-old self finds liberation through hip-hop and r and b attending "music jams" in suburban Victoria. Ironically, Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, the producer of this song, and seven others on my album, is responsible for creating a lot of my favourite songs from the 90's as I eventually realized while examining the plaques his studio walls. When Rodney and I work together, I feel like a child in a playground, uninhibited and happy. We have a great time.
"Waiting For The Night", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, is inspired by a diary I kept as a smitten sixteen-year-old on a summer vacation in exotic S. Miguel, Portugal, my parent's birthplace.
In "High Life", also produced by Jerkins, I sing about what happens after all the dreams come true; the crash and burn; the process of running from your hometown to seek "success", and what happens when you obtain it. The song was partly inspired by a disarming moment I had during a show on the European leg of the Loose tour in 2007.
"Spirit Indestructible", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, is an ode to the spirit which resides in all of us and triumphs over anything. It is inspired by people I have met, and special moments in history that I have read about.
Spirituality is one of the underlying themes on the album. On "Miracles", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, "Believers", produced by Bob Rock and Rick Knowles, and "The Most Beautiful Thing", featuring the angelic vocals of Sara Tavares, and produced by Salaam Remi, I sing about grace, joy, faith, commitment and ecstasy.
In "Circles", produced by indie band Passion Pits' lead singer, Mike Angelakos, and "Bucket List", produced by Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins, I meditate on personal relationships and life goals.
On "Something", I let my voice chill out and ride Salaam Remi's effortlessly masterful beat and Nas' classic hip-hop presence.
On the reggae track "Don't Leave Me" I sing from the perspective of a woman at wit's end with her love life, to the authentically produced sounds of Jamaica's own "Di Genius".
On "Enemy", produced and arranged by Salaam Remi, I sing about the self-indulgence of self-sabotage, the artist's lame but habitual escape.
On "Thoughts", produced by The Demolition Crew, and myself I am joined by my new friends The Kenyan Boys Choir in both English and Swahili.
On the remix of "Thoughts", my favourite electronic producer/ DJ, Tiesto, shows his mellow side, brewing the perfect laidback track.
On "Be Ok", produced by John Shanks with additional programming by The Demolition Crew, Nelstar recording artist Dylan Murray lends his unforgettable voice in a charming, simple duet that only he could pen.
On "End Of The World", producer Fraser T. Smith lends grace to a simple love song that Rick Nowels and I wrote together.
All of these songs have incredible meaning to me and were written in moments of intense personal growth.
Overall, I would describe this album as raw and honest- a friendly punch in the face.
These tracks combine hard beats with strong, dynamic, sometimes pretty vocals. It's overall, quite a simple, at times juvenile album that was very liberating to create and gave me immense joy.
I hope you enjoy it too!