Mississippi-based songwriter Schaefer Llana is entering a period of change. Having recently toured as a guitarist and backing vocalist with Jimbo Mathus’ live band and contributed vocals to Drive-By Truckers’ most recent LP, Llana’s own music reached new levels of exposure when she signed with Big Legal Mess last year, releasing the Southern-shaded Americana ballad “It’s Gonna Take Some Time” through the Oxford, Mississippi–based label. She’s returning today to share a third single through them following January’s “The Great Pretender,” with “The Start of Spring” taking an optimistic approach to the quickly changing seasons.
The introspective track, featuring layers of minimal instrumentation, began as a simple guitar doodle before Llana began to make connections between the bare-bones composition and the sudden changes in her personal life. “Eventually a chapter of my life closed, and I was able to match it to lyrics that felt equally as pondered as they are certain,” she recalls. “I was finding it all as I wrote it and realizing it to be true. This song wasn’t one that I had the full picture of before its existence. Rather, this song gave identity to what I was feeling and allowed me to acknowledge and move on. ‘The Start of Spring’ is a reflection and rebirth into a new cycle."
For the song’s video, the delicacy of this change is reflected in the soft color palette and slow pacing. “[Director Josh Cannon] and I played with abstract ideas to convey moods instead of a narrative,” she adds. “The concept of death and rebirth are main themes, with stillness and motion emphasizing the contrast. The color red versus the color green act for this purpose as well. All of this was captured in stark and meticulous ways by the director of photography Sam [Leathers]. I’m proud of this stunning visual.”
Watch it below.