celeste’s new single is an emotional ode to absent fathers

Watch the beautiful video for 'Father's Son' here.

by Frankie Dunn
28 January 2019, 2:50pm

Brighton-born, London-based soul singer Celeste has found her sound and seems intent on reducing us all to tears with it. Following 2018’s Both Sides of the Moon and Lately, jazzy collaborations with Leeds band Gotts Street Park, she just hit us right in the feels with new single Father’s Son. “Most of my songs,” she told Julie Adenuga on Beats 1 the other week, “they’re not happy. I feel more inspired by an extreme sad emotion than happiness.” This is certainly one of those songs. Set to a shimmering organ and steady bassline, Celeste explores her complicated relationship with her Jamaican father, who passed away when she was 16.

"Father’s Son is a song about absent fathers,” Celeste told i-D. “Who you are without them, who you will be without them and all the questions about yourself that you wish you could have asked them.” Playing with gender in the lyrics, she wrote it as a universal anthem for those searching for, not excuses, but some kind of explanation for their behaviour. “My mother has covered so much in my life,” she adds, “but there were points where I thought it would be cool to ask my dad this one question.”

The accompanying video is a stunning portrait series depicting fathers, sons, those left behind, modern masculinity, breaking the cycle, but ultimately family... in whatever form you might find it. And despite the quietly heartbreaking context, Celeste’s new release is, well, celestial.

gotts street park
Father's Son