Silence explores the act of communication and the privilege and responsibility it carries.
Nova Scotia’s emerging songwriting sensation Braden Lam recently teamed up with Pabineau First Nation rap artist Wolf Castle (Tristan Grant) and Prince Edward Island producer Colin Buchanan to create Silence, Lam’s first single of 2022.
On Silence, Buchanan’s proven ear for production and structure plots an escalating melody that leads Lam’s comforting vocal tone forward to meet some of Wolf Castle’s smoothest lyrics to date. From the opening piano melody to the thematic refrain that closes it all out, Silence is an immediate standout highlighting the talent and collaborative work of three award-winning east coast artists.
Lam began writing Silence as a highly personal exploration of what makes any relationship work. More than simple friendship or having common interests, Lam succeeds in his attempt to highlight the importance of strong, healthy communication as the foundation for sustaining anything meaningful.
As he worked through this idea, the concept grew to include thoughts on how each of us use different forms of communication to express ourselves, shape our identities, and build community in the real world. Through the writing process, Lam came to see communication as a privilege we all need to respect. This broader lyrical interpretation finds even deeper meaning when paired with Grant’s lyrics and vocal performance.
“I have a duty and a privilege to speak up as a white person, while I also need to be careful with my words,” said Lam, “I don’t want to make a mess of the space that you’ve given me, but at the end of the day you just need to speak up and say something. Tristan doesn’t have the privilege of choice—he can’t look away.”
Silence marks Lam’s first musical collaborative song and his first co-written song.
“Braden is sick of being silent about the issues going on in the world, as an observer,” said Grant. “And I’m not going to be silent about what I go through anymore. We’re meeting in the middle to get the message out.”
Photos by Katie MacLeod.