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Sam Nichol picks at the connection between lover and music in “gregory”

“Is it her or the music I love?” every quiet, bristling note seems to ask.

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With a simple, close-mic’d guitar, Sam Nichol lays bare a reflective, vulnerable moment. What follows is the resurrection of a moment, tangled and tender. “I fell in love with a folk singer named Gregory.”

How much of this love is linked to Gregory? How much to the lover he kissed while Gregory’s songs floated on the air around them? “Is it her or the music I love?” every quiet, bristling note seems to ask. When he hears Gregory play, he can’t separate the music from his memory—what he calls “mistaken identity.”

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The raw emotional turmoil kicks up at the second chorus (2:16). Sam adds a vintage miniature pump organ and vocal oohs. And when they drop out, hollowing the orchestration, we’re returned to longing for both the lover and Gregory.

Recorded in a Nashville bedroom, Nichol’s confession of confusion comes through in the controlled falsetto cracks bleeding pain and desire. “It’s my mistakes that have to break my heart,” he admits.

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As the song ends, listen on repeat. Just like Sam’s pain of remembrance, the song creates a seamless loop letting you relive the realization once again.

Stream “gregory” below.

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