Black Belt Eagle Scout– moniker of Swinomish, WA-based multi-instrumentalist Katherine Paul – returns with a new single, “Don’t Give Up.” This is Black Belt Eagle Scout’s first new release since 2019’sAt the Party With My Brown Friends, an album “encased in swirls of dream-pop production…[that] represents a softer, more subtle sort of resistance” (Pitchfork), and her debut,Mother of My Children. Throughout “Don’t Give Up,” Paul’s heartfelt vocals are wrapped in gauze, rising over guitar, percussion, and mellotron. “‘Don’t Give Up’ is a song about mental health awareness and the importance that my connection to the land plays within my own mental health journey,” says Paul. She wrote the track over the course of two years, first starting right before the pandemic in 2020 at a songwriting residency in Coast Salish territory and ending in November 2021 while attending that same residency again.
She elaborates: “Spending time with the land and on the water are ways that strengthen my connection to my ancestors and to my culture. It helps heal my spirit and is the form of self-care that helps me the most. The lyrics ‘I don’t give up’ mean staying alive. I wrote this song for me but also for my community and anyone who deals with challenging mental health issues to remind us just how much of a role our connection to the environment plays within our healing process. At the end of the song when I sing ‘the land, the water, the sky,’ I wanted to sing it like my late grandfather Alexander Paul Sr. sang in our family’s big drum group – from the heart.” Enjoy the tune!