Music

With "Nobody Knows You (Like I Do)", Lyman Ellerman Comes to Terms with Secrets (premiere)

Photo: Larry Brake

Lyman Ellerman tells the story of a father speaking to his drug-addled son in this compellingly tender folk ballad, "Nobody Knows You (Like I Do)".

"Who knows you better than you know yourself?" That is the question that Lyman Ellerman poses when asked about his latest song, "Nobody Knows You (Like I Do)". Written through the eyes of a father speaking to his drug-addled son, Ellerman's tender folk ballad delicately unfurls painful truths.

Ellerman continues, "Even if you don't always let everyone know what's 'really' going on inside there. And for the most part, realistically speaking, who does? But coming to terms with those hidden secrets, and what they mean, and what you're willing to reveal, and what you'd prefer to keep hidden is what this song is about. You can't hide from yourself. You can't lie to yourself."

The song builds itself around these complexities in love and light. Ellerman takes the poignant subject matter on with a poetic depth, crafting a world with this soundscape that nearly creates a tangible image of its events carrying out before the listener. It's a soft, sweet arrangement that gradually adds layers of harmony, percussion, pedal steel, and guitars to tell its story.

"I wrote this song with my good pal Keesy Timmer," says Ellerman. "Occasionally when we'd write, we just went for the heart. This was one of those days. No inspiration needed. Just experience. We were the story."

"When we began recording this track we had in mind just acoustic, bass, and drums. Very low key. I suggested getting my daughter Jessica Dooley to sing a harmony line mostly throughout the whole song. She agreed. And she nailed it!! Then as we listened to the playbacks several times we thought it could use some electric guitar inflections. Jason Morgan (producer) kindly asked for some solitude to analyze and absorb the vibe more closely. He added those Les Paul swells subtly and accurately to create an overall haunting sound that enhances the lyric and melody to create one of the most memorable tracks on the record."

"Nobody Knows You (Like I Do)" releases on 10 August via Woodshed Resistance.

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