When Hurricane Irma went to Category 5, with winds over 250 miles an hour, people in the Virgin Islands braced for something they knew they’d never come up against before. When it was over, those islands, home to many, a place of refuge for the people who crave the slowed down pace and welcoming spirit, had been ripped asunder. Buildings levelled, centuries old trees torn up by the roots, boats ripped from the water and flung onto the island, all power gone, little food, no water and a state of chaos. Kenny Chesney owned a home on St. John until Irma destroyed it and has since involved himself tirelessly in the recovery. In many aspects, new album Songs for the Saints is a series of diary entries on reflections or consequences born of that destruction and turmoil.
“I was at a turning point in my life on so many levels, and then Hurricane Irma hit the Virgin Islands. But this album isn’t about St. John, so much as it’s about what happened to St. John and all those islands you didn’t see on the news,” continues the man called “The People’s Superstar” by The L A Times. “To just see the devastation and what that does to people is one thing, but then there’s this courage and resilience people find…”
“This is not a literal record,” he cautions, “but it is an album about the refuges we all have, how temporary life is and the way we navigate to better places, dig in and face the destruction. And sometimes, we learn to own our wild hearts in the process.”
… read the rest in Issue 90