Brett Dennen is telling us to get out and see the world at a time when we need it more than ever. Flame-haired, six-foot-five, and with a singular gift for meditating on life’s most meaningful subjects with equal parts innocence and razor sharp wit, you know Dennen from his decade-plus career as a singer/songwriter. With a successful string of albums and four Top Ten AAA singles like “Make You Crazy,” “Wild Child,” and 2018’s “Already Gone,” which achieved his highest chart position yet, Dennen has cemented himself as a fixture in American folk music. What you may not know about Brett is that he did not set out to be a professional musician. It is a surprising revelation for someone who embodies the best of songwriting: singular storytelling, singability, and the unique capacity to hold up a mirror to our lives, our society, and the greater world.
In recent years, Brett Dennen has started to let the world in on his secrets. In 2017, he created the “Lift Series” and “Vacationer Series,” two annual tours wherein he combines shows in ski and beach towns with conservation initiatives and education in each locale.
Dennen’s latest release, See The World, was released July 23rd, 2021 on Mick Music. Like the man, himself, the new album is a potpourri of experiences and sometimes seeming contradictions. In the album opener and title track, Dennen sings of “diamond beaches” and “prism streams,” and reminds us that “You don’t have to be rich to get around / There are mansions growing out of the ground.” In the refrain, he urges “Days go by / Get out and see the world with your own eyes.” In “Paul Newman Daytona Rolex,” we dive into Dennen’s signature witticisms. Over an insistent, light-hearted groove, he opens the song, “I never been accused of being fancy / I’m not stupid with my money honey, I could be stupid for free.” The song is ostensibly a love letter to a rare watch, one which Dennen does not, in fact, own. Really it is an irresistible, irreverent meditation on what we value as human beings. As Dennen puts it, “the things you can’t put a price on should be the things you value the most… to me it’s all about self worth and peace of mind.”
Brett Dennen doesn’t take his time on his beloved earth for granted. He is intent on exploring the world and exploring himself in the process. Hence, See The World. The album also happens to come at what we hope will be a turning point for all of us – where we all hope to be doing just what Brett wants for us – seeing the world. Quite tangible in the title track and the album as a whole is Dennen’s newest and greatest pursuit – that of father to his young son, Van, for whom this song was written. But it is also easy to imagine him writing it for all of us, gently encouraging us to pick up the paint brush, jump in the ocean, and climb whatever mountain lies in front of us. Peppered in equal parts with shrewd quips and vulnerable admissions, the album is ultimately an exploration of life’s deepest meaning. See The World is, in short, reflective of a life well-explored, a life well-pursued, and, we can hope, a life well-lived.
The fall of 2021 marked the 15th anniversary of Brett’s beloved sophomore album, So Much More. Coming off the heels of his 7th studio album, See The World, and the top 5 AAA hit of the same name, Brett will be celebrating the anniversary of So Much More on his summer tour, along with a deluxe anniversary edition release of So Much More
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