“Over the past two and a half years,” says Astra Kelly, “in the midst of a serious musical reinvention and a shifting of life focus, I have started — and not completed — three new band-album projects. Finally, through the maze of rediscovery, I am putting the finishing touches on a new acoustic album, Back to Ten."
"One True Love"
Astra Kelly live from Higher Ground
One of the new tracks, “ Ship of Fools,” was inspired by an ex-boyfriend’s drunken text. “ He sent me long, stream of consciousness, poetic rambling, with a note that said something like ‘this is crap, but I wanted to send this to you.’”
She immediately saw a song. “He was able to express something I’d been feeling, but couldn’t find the words on my own...I’ve always thought he was a great writer, but he’ll refute that every time. I printed out his words and took a sharpie to it. Pretty much everything that was left became the lyrics. I finished it that night.”
“This is not a ship of fools, the descendants of the worst.
Nobodies with no place in time, long traveling shadows.
Watching it pass on by, a silhouette of a train bound for nowhere.
Someone get us off of this train.
For Lords sake, somebody get us off of this goddamned train.”
Her ex, Shawn Iverson, is credited as co-writer. “We dated about three and a half years,” says Kelly. “We met in Santa Fe and moved out to San Diego together in 2006. It just kind of stopped working as a relationship, even though there was a lot of love there.”
Contacted via email, Iverson says “ I sent her the text because I was feeling like Wile E. Coyote trying to run through that ACME hole that he sets up for the Road Runner, that only the Road Runner can get through. No matter how much I tried, I couldn’t get through that stupid tunnel.”
Unlike most of Taylor Swift’s exes, he likes the song inspired by his drunken rambling. “I had a feeling that I frankly couldn’t express righteously, but I knew she could. It was a dirt road that she turned into an expressway. She has that talent.” Kelly’s Back to Ten album debuts September 18 at Bella Vista Social Club in La Jolla.