Aaron Nathans & Michael G. Ronstadt – Ghost Writer

I’ve been challenging myself to publish a new blog post every day. There’s a lot of good new music about and I’m keen to give it a platform. But, it’s also been good for me to get into a routine of writing daily. Having some sort of structure to focus upon clearly helps my sanity in these insane times.

Those days when I would be staring at a blank page seem increasingly distant. I’m now in the flow and with that comes a confidence of putting any order of words down onto paper with the knowledge that they will ultimately make sense to some. That’s not to say that I’ve been any less stringent about the quality I want to achieve in the words I publish; more that by practice, this routine is getting easier. 

Just as I wouldn’t expect to be able to run a half marathon with no training, neither should I expect the words to flow if I don’t limber up first.

The character in ‘Ghost Writer’, the opening track on Aaron Nathans and Michael G. Ronstadt’s 2020 album, Shadow Of The Cyclone, is experiencing a pretty severe case of writers block. They sit at the vintage typewriter hoping that the words will come but the brain is largely drawing blanks. And the ghost writer’s lot is compounded by the fact that they know that, when the words do come, none of them will be credited directly to them. Their existence is anonymous, so much so that they’re ignored by locals as they grumpily take a stroll down the high street. This is not a happy character sketch.

The sad lyrical tone is supplemented by Nathans and Ronstadt’s delivery. Michael, nephew of Linda, plays a haunting cello line whilst Aaron’s baritone voice and guitar pluck add to the overall eeriness. This is Americana at its best; maudlin and considered, desolate and with an absence of hope. You can’t help but feel for the ghost writer by the time the song draws to a close. 

Maybe he should start to write a daily music blog? That might help to lift his spirits. I promise happier pop tomorrow.