We’ve got a whole lot of love for Nahko here at EP, and with his debut album, ‘My Name Is Bear’ out today we thought we’d take the time to also look at the first released single, ‘Dragonfly’.
Oregon-born Nahko has asked all the sorts of questions we’ve all asked ourselves – “Why am I here?” “Who am I?”. For Nahko though these questions literally shaped his life. Born in 1986 to a mother who was only 15, circumstances meant that he was given up for adoption. Although he had a comfortable upbringing, he nonetheless felt the need to find the answer to those nagging questions, and left home at the age of 18. ‘Dragonfly’ is the story of that journey.
He travelled to Alaska, where he fell madly in love for the first time, and with his love travelled down the west coast and across to Louisiana, where they lived together for four months. Surviving for that first year away from home is the main inspiration behind ‘Dragonfly’.
Nahko made his way to an organic farm in Hawai’i, where he worked as a part of the WWOOF scheme during the winters, and returning home to Oregon in the summer. Still he needed answers to his questions, and while in Oregon he searched online foe information on his birth mother. He was shocked to find she lived a mere 15 minutes away from him:
“I drove there and, there she was, my mom,” he says. “My two sisters, their kids, my two brothers… everyone. Mom was crying. I was crying. The first thing she asked was ‘What do you do?’ I shrugged and said, ‘I play music.’ It literally happened like that — all by divine intervention. I picked up, left Hawaii, and came home to not so randomly discover my mom lived basically down the street from where I grew up.” He was still only 21.
‘My Name Is Bear’ is an aptly titled album, as Nahko, a name given to him by a friend during his time in Hawai’i, means “Bear”. The music video for ‘Dragonfly’, first release from the album, features Paris Jackson, herself no stranger to non-traditional childhoods. Paris radiates the essence of the song, with motions mimicking a flower in bloom, translating perfectly Nahko’s declaration of standing strong in the path of truth, while facing the cruelties of growing into an adult. In a world where dark clouds threaten to rain corruption into the minds of the innocent, a song such as ‘Dragonfly’ is needed more than ever, in order to help us find the answers to our own burdensome questions.
‘My Name Is Bear’ is out now.