Grammy-nominated Irish band Fontaines D.C. today announces the release of a new take on “I Was Not Born”, marking the second of four unique releases planned by Jim Beam Welcome Sessions across 2021, available exclusively via Jim Beam’s official YouTube channel. With millions of fans not having experienced live music in over a year and looking to reconnect with one another through their shared passion for it, Jim Beam Welcome Sessions is bringing iconic artists back to the independent venues that gave them their first stage to film one-of-a-kind performances.
Filmed at the iconic The Lexington in Islington, North London, Fontaines D.C.’s return pays homage to their roots and their shared career; prior to critical acclaim and breaking through into the mainstream consciousness, The Lexington represented a landmark venue for the band playing some of their first gigs outside of their native Ireland in the early years following their formation in 2017. Taken from their second album, ‘A Hero’s Death’, which was nominated at the Grammy Awards 2021 for ‘Best Rock Album’, the unique re-recording of ‘I Was Not Born’ brings to life the intimacy and romance of the on-stage experience. Both through sound and the style in which it is filmed, the film offers a unique take on the importance of finding a genuine connection with fans live.
Fontaines D.C.’s Carlos O’Connell says: “We have been incredibly lucky that there’s always been ‘a buzz’ and energy around our live gigs. The experience of being a live performer is a heightened one in which emotions are amplified and having that sense that you are welcome within a space among an audience who share your love for the music you are making is a vitally important thing. In its very essence, a live performance is a conversation between the band, their instruments, and the crowd in front of them. You can’t manufacture that buzz. It can never be as fulfilling as creating communion with an audience that is both feeding off and providing you with the energy you need in the moment.”
Fontaines D.C.’s Conor Curley continues: “So often it’s a singularly unique experience you can’t replicate or imitate playing live and is so often magnified or diluted by the space you are in. As opposed to the overly controlled feeling you get in larger venues, there’s a more natural, authentic feel offered to you by the smaller independent gigs. It’s refreshing to be back at The Lexington, which has a particular romance that reminds us of when we started out. Memories of this place are all about the people within it. The moment when crowds fill the space and surround the stage. That feeling of belonging and never being alone that music gives us as performers and audience members.”
The Jim Beam Welcome Sessions launched in June 2021 with a unique, multi-instrumental rendition of ‘Time’ by English singer-songwriter Jack Garratt, which marked the start of a multi-year marketing effort to foster a relationship with music fans to support independent music venues handpicked for their unique welcoming spirit. Working in partnership with renowned music production team La Blogotheque-famed for collaborations with the likes of Justin Timberlake, Paul McCartney, Jack White, and Iggy Pop–Fontaines D.C. are followed by future acts including Jose Gonzalez and Wolf Alice–taking viewers behind the scenes in the venues that welcomed them from the start via exclusive content dropping on YouTube throughout 2021 and extending into a series of digital live streams and live events across 2022 and beyond.