From the ashes of Top End group Rambutan Jam Band ascends a new musical endeavour – East Point – spearheaded by RJB singer/songwriter Ward Hancock and RJB drumming powerhouse Rowan Dally.
Their first release single under the East Point banner, ‘Let Go‘, was originally written by singer Hancock to cope with a personal struggle, and soon evolved into a song about the catastrophic floods that hit the Northern Rivers of NSW and Brisbane in February 2022. It is particularly about the residents of Lismore, where Hancock’s family has lived for generations.
Says Ward: “Just like everyone in the area, my world stopped because of the floods. It felt natural to change the direction of the song, to tell the story of the floods and how people were impacted. I noticed a similar theme between my situation and that of the one around me –the concept of ‘letting go’. Mine was a choice. Their’s was not.”
On February 28 2022, the Wilson River penetrated Lismore’s CBD marking the start of the largest flood ever recorded in the municipality. The town was drowned and countless livelihoods and memories swept away by surging floodwaters.
“I was lucky to live on a hill and was not affected directly by the floodwaters but the trauma and raw emotion around me was impossible to ignore,” Hancock said. “I went to help with the recovery and it really hit home as I witnessed tearful families, the young and old, throwing out photographs, belongings, baby cots, family heirlooms and personal treasures. Their circumstances was heartbreaking.”
Recorded at Dally’s Sands Studio in Jingili, Darwin, ‘Let Go‘ delivers a pulsing rhythm under Hancock’s typically lilting vocals that bring to life this lyric-driven examination of struggle. Airy guitar floats over the bass hubbub below giving a frequency-range fullness that is very pleasing to the ear while not overbearing Ward’s message. This is radio-friendly and could likely end up an anthem to the memory of this natural disaster.
East Point’s self-production is brought to life by Ian Pritchett of Noisegate Studios (The Beautiful Girls, Angus & Julia Stone), with his signature large and warm sound. The single’s haunting concept art is an image by Lismore photographer Elise Derwin who documented the flood whilst eight-months pregnant.
Says Ward: “The people of Lismore need a boost. Everyone is tired and drained of energy. We’ve had hardly any sunshine since February and the town’s collective psyche has taken a battering. I hope to generate awareness and do my bit to help this determined, resilient community.”
All proceeds from ‘Let Go‘ (purchases, royalties, sync licensing etc) will be donated to grass roots charity Resilient Lismore, or the next five years. Any small businesses wanting to use the song for self-promotion can do so free of charge.
Have a listen to ‘Let Go‘ at the Spotify link below, or on the other usual streaming services: