Upcoming North-Carolina based singer-songwriter Matt Stewart aka Finder’s Field recently released the brand new single “Don’t Let Me Go” alongside NYC based musician Ashley Jana.
Matt has kindly taken the time to speak to Fierce & Fabulous Revolution about his latest single release. Check out what he had to say below.
Hey Matt, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Can you start by telling us a little bit about yourself?
Matt: Thanks so much for having me! I’m Matt Stewart and I’m a singer-songwriter from North Carolina, US and I perform under the name Finder’s Field.
When did you first discover your passion for music?
Matt: As a kid I really enjoyed hearing my mom play on the upright piano at home. I was really bored by music lessons but super excited about plunking around on the keys by myself. I think music really started becoming a passion of mine when my twin brother and I toured the US West Coast at 9 years old with a boys choir, and then definitely the summer when I taught myself guitar and started constantly writing lyrics.
How would you describe your style to someone unfamiliar with your work?
Matt: My musical style is acoustic folk rock and singer-songwriter, with minimalist instrumentation since I really love the sound of a voice and a stringed instrument. My favorite instruments are an acoustic guitar or cello.
You recently released the song “Don’t Let Me Go” alongside Ashley Jana. How did the idea to create this single come together?
Matt: I remember the week I wrote this song and there was a lot going on with my two kids and wife and my two jobs but I couldn’t stop working on the lyrics. I was desperate to write a song for that person in your life that you can’t live without and you know they are dealing with something huge like depression or a terminal illness. What would you say to that person? I reached out to Ashley to see if she’d sing and play the song since she has such a phenomenal voice but once we got into the project it ended up being a duet which I love even more.
What does the song personally mean to you?
Matt: This song means more to me than most songs because I wrote it out of the grief and heartache of losing my dad two years ago to stage 4 lung cancer. I had no idea we’d only have 8 months with him after we heard the news. And I hadn’t really experienced death growing up, most of my grandparents were gone before I was old enough to remember. I’m still angry at myself since life was so busy at that time, I had just started my first full-time job and then my first child was born and then we were so far from my dad it was hard to visit. I feel like I didn’t use that time wisely and wasn’t really there for my dad like I could have been and I have huge regrets about that for sure. So it’s tough to hear this song but it’s also a way of grieving which is part of my healing process and it’s a way to remember him which I love of course.
If listeners could take away one message from this song, what would you like it to be?
Matt: Hold on to the people you love. Put down your phone and look into their eyes because you don’t know if you’ll have them tomorrow. I’m not trying to be a downer I’m just trying to be real. Relationships are the most important thing we have in life, everything else is just stuff and it’s not the main thing. People are the main thing.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Matt: I really love being outside and taking walks. And I love spending time with my two kids and my wife. Having kids gives me plenty of opportunity to act like a kid again and I think being a dad is something I’ve been waiting for my whole life. It’s amazing and my wife and I actually looked at each other the other day and said should we try for kid number three?? Haha the idea of having kids is tough but when you see them and hold them and experience them it’s a whole different thing, it’s amazing.
What was the last album you listened to & did you enjoy it?
Matt: I’ve been listening to so many great songs lately, one that comes to mind is “Eight” by Sleeping At Last, that whole enneagram album is so creative and I can’t believe how he captures each personality type so well. I’m a type 1 personality and he nails my personality on the head haha. The song I’ve heard recently that brought me to tears was “The Blessing” by Kari Jobe and Cody Carnes. Especially in this season we’re in, and then there’ s that line about your children and their children’s children. So yeah, that blew me away.
What song do you always keep on your playlist & why?
Matt: Oh that’s a tough one! I have at least 100 songs that I consider my favorite songs, but if I had to narrow it down to a song (or two! Haha) I would have to pick two very sentimental songs from my childhood. My twin brother and I would sit by the radio and wait for our favorite songs to come on and hit record on our tape recorder, and the upbeat song we really loved was “Two Princes” by Spin Doctors even though we couldn’t quite understand every lyric haha. My sad emotional song would be “Ordinary World” by Duran Duran because it was the first song I remember as a kid where the chord changes, lyrics, guitar riff, vocals, it all caught my attention and now that I’m grown I can appreciate that he’s singing about somebody he lost.
Who would you consider to be your biggest musical influence?
Matt: As far as one artist or band I would have to say Billy Joel because his song “We Didn’t Start The Fire” was the first song I remember starting in 3rd grade and I loved how he connected lyrics together so seamlessly and had so much energy and emotion and his chords melodies were so catchy. My songs are much less wordy now but when I started off I was mainly a lyricist and had a ton of words in my songs. My biggest musical influence is actually classical music, since I spent so many years singing in various choirs and playing piano and French horn. That’s where I learned harmony and site-reading as well as listening to the group and blending with other voices and how hard work and focus produces an incredible payoff.
Finally, is there anything you would like to say to the readers of Fierce & Fabulous Revolution?
Matt: Music is one of the greatest things I’ve ever experienced. As human beings we have a built-in need to create and listen to music, it’s not a privilege, it’s a necessity and it will always be the thing that unites us and heals us when times get crazy and tough and uncertain. Let’s create and listen and share like never before.
You can check out “Don’t Let Me Go” below.