Emma Swift

Emma Swift

Blonde On The Tracks, Emma Swift’s album containing a selection of immaculate Bob Dylan covers, was one of the most-listened albums of 2020 here at The Influences’ headquarters. The Australian singer-songwriter currently residing in Nashville and London (UK) really captured some of their essence and added to it with her incredible voice on the album that also features her husband Robyn Hitchcock and Wilco’s Patrick Sansone – who produced it. For The Influences though, Swift picked songs by Radiohead and Leonard Cohen to cover, and sang her own The Soft Apocalypse.

This session was recorded on October 22nd, 2022.

Thom Yorke considered High And Dry to be ‘too Rod Stewart’.

High and Dry by Radiohead is a track from their second studio album, The Bends, released in 1995. Quoting a Rolling Stone feature on the album: Yorke wrote the somber “High and Dry” at the University of Exeter in the late 1980s, with his short-lived former band Headless Chickens. “As far as I can remember, the words were originally about some loony girl I was going out with, but after a while, they got mixed up with ideas about success and failure,” he told Billboard in 1996. “It was an old demo we thought was rubbish, you know, too Rod Stewart or something. But when we came back to the track one day, it seemed like a mirror showing us all the things we had been through.”

Your eyes are soft with sorrow.

Leonard Cohen’s song Hey, That’s No Way to Say Goodbye is a reflection on the end of a relationship, imbued with the gentle melancholy and poetic depth that characterize much of his work. Originally released on his debut album, Songs of Leonard Cohen, in 1967, the song captures the bittersweet moments of parting with a lover. It’s a prime example of Cohen’s ability to articulate the complexities of love and loss through song. And – much like on the Dylan songs – Emma Swift’s voice only adds to that.

Love is a drag.

In addition to making music, Emma Swift loves surrealist art, collage animation and travel. She counts visual artists Dora Maar and Dorothea Tanning among her heroes, as well as the poets Mary Oliver and Louis MacNeice. She is married to British alternative songwriter Robyn Hitchcock (who recorded his own session on this same autumn day in 2022) and the pair frequently perform live together. As a duo they have released two 7 inch singles, Love Is A Drag and Follow Your Money.

In August 2020 Swift released the critically-acclaimed “Blonde On The Tracks”, an inspired reimagining of some of her favourite Bob Dylan tunes on Tiny Ghost Records. The album received Best of 2020 accolades from Rolling Stone, Nashville Scene, No Depression, The Guardian and more. The album charted in the Australian Top 10, as well as in the UK, US and European Americana Charts. If you don’t have it yet, do yourself a huge favour and get it now.

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High And Dry (Radiohead)
Tidal | Apple Music

Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye
(Leonard Cohen)
Tidal | Apple Music

Emma Swift

Apple Music


Filmed & edited by Matthijs van der Ven.
Audio recorded & mixed by Matthijs van der Ven.

Utrecht, The Netherlands

Robyn Hitchcock
Suzan Becking

There is no better way to discover music than watching great musicians cover the songs they love. The Influences has been producing these videos ever since 2008.

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