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Brixton-based singer-songwriter releases lockdown EP

Independent singer-songwriter Josiah Mortimer has released an EP recorded during England’s lockdown.

Josiah Mortimer

The folky set of four recordings are dedicated to the UK’s ‘pandemic heroes’, with cover art taken by the artist during the first lockdown last March.

The Brixton-based, unsigned singer-songwriter, 27, recorded the tracks from his flat in Brixton in December 2020 and this January, produced from Cornwall through the producer Cornish Underground.Josiah grew up in Cornwall, and his family are based there.

The songs were mostly written during the first lockdown – and launched during the third. Josiah Mortimer said: 'When scribbling down these songs in the first lockdown, I never thought I’d be releasing them in another lockdown nearly a year on. But I hope that makes them more relevant. It’s been a really welcome distraction – my way of processing everything that’s going on.'

'The EP is also a tribute to everyone who is getting us through this pandemic – the key workers, carers and NHS staff.'

The EP will be free to download but people are encouraged to donate to FareShare, who are working to end hunger in the UK.

Producer Brendan McGreal from Cornish Underground added: 'This was a really positive remote collaboration, making the best of the opportunities we have, with good results. Making perfect use of creative time at home in isolation, Josiah wrote, recorded and arranged all the parts for his tunes, then sent them to me for mixdown. It's been a pleasure and I’m looking forward to working together again.'

Josiah plays all the instruments on the EP – acoustic guitar, electric, banjo, vocals, and bass. Influences include Nick Drake, Alexi Murdoch, Joni Mitchell, The Staves, and Sufjan Stevens.

The songs reflect on being in London over the best year.

Tracks include:

Coming up for Air – written last summer, on hoping for a way out of the pandemic
Horizon – A message about not losing hope about a ‘lost year’
This Town – a love letter to London, based on cycling around South London during the first lockdown
Forget the Land – Originally written as a poem, the song is about missing being on the river (Josiah is a gig rower) Josiah is available for interviews.