GREGORY ACKERMAN | “STRESSLOVE” EP | MUNICH RECORDS | OCT. 4th, 2019
“We’ve Got a Runner” was a song I wrote after a break up,” explains Los Angeles-based songwriter, Gregory Ackerman. “I recorded it in my room and posted a demo on Soundcloud in 2015, but I always wanted to resurrect it in the studio.”
The song is now the first single from “Stresslove” (Oct. 4th, Munich Records), Ackerman’s upcoming EP of tunes that were written as “love songs meant for those who had fallen out of love.”
As with his 2018 debut album And Friends, the “Stresslove” EP was produced by Pierre de Reeder, former bassist with Rilo Kiley, and the engineer of recent recordings with bandmate Jenny Lewis, M. Ward, She & Him, and other notable songwriters.
de Reeder adds some sonic hypnotic mysticism to Ackerman’s sunny 70’s-era California sunset melodies, as well as a foil to the expertly navigated lyrical turns that helped Ackerman’s single “Ten Little Indians / And The There Were None” to catch the attention of American Songwriter in 2018. The song also became a top ten finalist out of nearly 20,000 submissions in the latest International Songwriting Competition.
In addition to “We’ve Got a Runner,” the “Stresslove” EP contains the tunes “Dawg,” “Follow Through,” and “Future”.
“I had the song “Love of the Loveless” by Eels in my head while I was writing these,” Ackerman explains. “I was thinking a lot about my relationship to love at the time. I had been going through some flings, but nothing that was sticking.”
“The EP follows the arc of a failed relationship,” Ackerman continues. “It’s like a sonic version of 19th century painter, Thomas Cole’s series ‘The Course of Empire,’ but for the stages of love.”
“‘Dawg’ is the early stage where it’s fun and new, followed by the overanalyzing, second-guessing stage of ‘Follow Through,’ which then leads to the realization, breakup stage of ‘We’ve Got a Runner,’ to the rebuilding, new chapter stage of ‘Future.’”
Releasing a first-single that references the most difficult point in the narrative could be seen as a downer, but the tune is actually revelatory. It’s a friend to the end that finds a path forward where it seems like there is none. Ackerman sings, “So leave me now, forever hold your peace, ‘Cause I’m taking to the streets, And it won’t be you I’m thinking of,” concluding with a smattering of applause, as if to say, “Hey, good job. You made it.”
“In this life, We know, We just have to let it go, It’s all about the future, It’s all about the future for me,” Ackerman sings on the EP’s closer “Future” which proves that when this guy is feeling optimistic, you’ll know about it.
It’s that attitude, and that way of looking at life and writing about it, which obviously gives Ackerman the kind of confidence needed to resurrect a half-decade old break up song to release as a single. Seems “We’ve Got a Runner” is about running towards as much as it is about running away.
“Stresslove” is a new four-song EP by Gregory Ackerman, out Oct. 4th from Munich Records. The “We’ve Got a Runner” single arrives June 14th. “Stresslove” is the follow-up to Ackerman’s 2018 debut album And Friends.
08/10/2019: San Francisco, CA @ Milk Bar (“Dawg” single release show)