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Grief is Transferred Into Sonic Expressions With Fred Copeman's "Mere Mortals"

Former keyboardist for SeepeopleS and The Beautiful Ones, Fred Copeman, is proud to announce the release of his second solo EP, ‘Mere Mortals.’

In April 2020, during the pandemic, Fred Copeman launched his solo career as a musician. Recorded at home during the lockdown and mixed and edited by Holland at the legendary Chillhouse Studios in Boston, MA, the body of work known as ‘Mere Mortals,’ is a substantial testament to Fred Copeman's growth as an artist and sonic arranger.

Allowing us to be introduced to this collection of songs with the notable title track and lead single, “Mere Mortals,” Fred Copeman’s vulnerability is placed into a scope of utter beauty as we gauge the intimacy this record showcases.

Through poignant instrumentation that has us feeling the music more than we hear it, the elusive essence of delicate hi-hats, twangy guitar plucks, and present piano chords has us embarking on this sonic voyage head first. Coming together in a brilliant fusion that speaks volumes on the soulful nature of Fred Copeman, this instrumental record has us capturing glimmers of light that burst from the seams of Fred Copeman’s artistry and individualism.

Being a staple song on the project due to the hurt that Fred Copeman felt as his father sadly passed in the midst of recording, “Mere Mortals,” is dedicated to his father, and acts as a creative outlet for the amalgamation of complex emotions that Fred Copeman searched to profoundly express. There’s a prominent sense of passion that is dispersed through the song’s organic evolution as each rhythmic pulse drowns you in a clutch of soul-infused tenors.

Ensuring to never stray from the integrity etched into each record exuded on the EP ‘Mere Mortals,’ Fred Copeman’s mission is loud and clear, as he becomes more honest with the feelings he holds within himself.

Welcome to BuzzMusic, Fred Copeman. We’re honored that you’re able to share this marvelous project with us. Our deepest condolences for your loss. With this tragic event taking place during recording, did you find that this ultimately changed the essence of your EP?

It did and it didn’t. Many of the songs on this album were well on their way to completion when my father unexpectedly passed. The title track, however, I wrote just 6 days after his death. I just sat at the piano and let the emotions come out, which is not how I typically write. That track was my opportunity to not only release my emotions at the moment but as I worked to complete it, to build a more dimensional emotional story of what processing grief looked like for me and share that. While the rest of the EP might feel like it has a different vibe, I hope and believe that all of my music offers a sonic pathway to contemplation.

There is such bold energy that comes to the surface in your lead single and title track, “Mere Mortals.” How long did it take for you to create a piece of this caliber, and could you please give us a deeper meaning into its significance to you?

The song Mere Mortals was built in pieces over about two months. I started with the main Piano riff and played around with different variations of that for a while. Then I found myself toying with flashy lead synth lines in the chorus and while it might feel a bit jarring, it strangely seemed to fit. The song became a way for me to represent the high highs and low lows of grief - and not just of the loss of a loved one but the feelings of gratitude that I felt for the good times I had with my father and for my own mortal life. The song’s varied elements really do feel representative of the spectrum of emotions that I have felt during its composition.

How has your creative process changed or remained the same from being on your own, versus being in a band setting? Could you please elaborate?

Well, the process does feel completely different. I have always loved being able to bring a song idea to bandmates or a writing partner and take it to the finish line together. Not having that in the solo writing process is a limitation, but I see limitations as really extraordinary opportunities in creation. With no one to bounce ideas off of, I have to create that process of finding fresh creative energy artificially. Maybe that means putting a song down for a few days and returning to it with fresh eyes, or approaching it with a different instrument in hand. I always find that embracing limitations like these ultimately helps squeeze that much more juice from the creative process.

What's next for you?

In life, I’m making a major pivot - I’m moving to Manhattan and starting a graduate program in sustainability at Columbia University. (For a few years now, I have found I can have separate music and career paths as long as sleep is kept to a minimum). In music, I think I’d like to take what I have learned as a solo artist over the past few years and try to build something with one or two other performers. I’m particularly interested in taking things into a more EDM direction, but who knows. I could very well find myself in a mandolin trio this time next year.

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