BEAR’S DEN RELEASE ONLY SON OF THE FALLING SNOW
THREE-SONG EP EXPLORES THEMES INSPIRED BY WINTER
JAKE GAF-DIRECTED VIDEO FOR THE STAR OF BETHNAL GREEN IS UNVEILED TODAY
Toronto, ON – December 10, 2019 – Winter can be a complicated time of year for many people: the short days, long nights, and the looming holidays can magnify feelings of loneliness and isolation. But winter can also evoke feelings of hope. As British author Nigel Slater observed in The Christmas Chronicles, the season is about the promise of things to come, "A secret world doing what it does each year. A study in renewal, rebirth, new life."
Bear's Den have released Only Son of the Falling Snow, a three-song EP inspired by the season. As Andrew Davie describes it, "The EP is a collection of songs united by a sense of what winter means to us. In all its beauty, sadness, stillness, and its ability to transform and bring things back to life."
And while Davie notes that the band set out "to make an EP that felt intimate and nostalgic," the seed for The Star of Bethnal Green was planted - or at least assisted - by a device that is not only ubiquitous, but has become a symbol of modernity: the iPhone.
Davie explains, "Voice memos on iPhones now save recordings by location which for us has been really helpful and is kind of how we started to write this song."
"The Star of Bethnal Green started its life as a voice memo recording on Kev's phone. He was writing the beginnings of the song on a friend's piano in Hackney but the voice memo mistakenly saved the recording location as 'The Star of Bethnal Green' which is actually just a pub down the road," he laughs. "When he sent me the idea we were both pretty in love with the idea of it as a song title and the Christmas and winter imagery it naturally evokes, so we decided to build the song around the idea of this pub.”
“We wanted to tell a story of someone at Christmas watching a singer performing in that bar and feeling completely overwhelmed by the performer and the performance as if their entire life, their identity, their purpose was being revealed to them with each note of the song. We're very proud of it and hope you enjoy it."
Listen to Only Son Of The Falling Snow here.
The video for The Star of Bethnal Green, directed by award-winning director, writer, and actor Jake Graf and scripted by Graf and his wife Hannah, tells a deeply moving story about empathy, kindness, and the courage it sometimes takes to embrace – and ultimately reveal – one's true self.
Watch the official video for The Star of Bethnal Green here.
"As a trans man who grew up without any positive representations to aspire to, I know how important it is that we start seeing more trans visibility in the mainstream media," notes Graf. "We have seen more and more allies to the community standing up and being counted, role models such as Jameela Jamil, Helen Mirren, Emma Watson, Hozier and Eddie Redmayne to name but a few, but as our tiny trans community continues to be attacked and vilified we truly need all the support that we can get."
He continues, "As a longtime fan of Bear's Den, it was not only a huge honor to be approached to write and direct their new music video for the stunning Star of Bethnal Green, but also incredibly encouraging that they were enthusiastic and excited about telling a trans story.
The film combines the magic of Christmas and the tale of the ghost of Christmas present with the powerful and hopeful story of an older trans woman being guided towards living as her authentic self. Older LGBTQ people are so often overlooked in cinema and the media that it felt like an important choice to depict such a rarely seen character.
Moreover, unlike many previous trans-themed projects, this one was trans led both across the creative side and by our incredible young star Jordan Revell, bringing a striking authenticity to the film.
Working with the amazing Toma Productions, with their strong track record of creating positive trans content, was an absolute joy and their whole team understood the importance of the film's authentic and unflinching approach.
My wife Hannah and I are extremely proud to have worked with The Den on this film, are hugely grateful for their support of our community, and sincerely hope that the video will help open hearts and minds and make a life a little easier for trans people this holiday season."
Actor Colin David Jackson, who plays the older character whose life is quietly slipping away from them, shares: "It was an honor working on this project with Jake and the amazing cast and crew. It's fair to say that it has been a life changing moment in many ways, and feels truly humbling to create something that might positively change people's perceptions of what it means to be transgender."
Speaking about her involvement in the video and the important message it seeks to highlight, actor Jordan Revell shares: "I'm extremely proud to have worked with Jake Graf and Bear's Den on the video, telling a truth experienced by many trans people around the world. This story is personal to me as a transgender woman experiencing the fear of coming out, being mocked and discriminated against by the majority on a daily basis. I'm perhaps one of the lucky ones who so far has managed to avoid threats, acts of violence and hate against me, but not all of our trans brothers and sisters are so fortunate, and with this story we show our solidarity and commemorate the 331 murdered trans people this year alone.* I hope this video inspires people to seek education and enlightenment on LGBTQ+ issues and in turn help us to work together for a more accepting and safe future for all."
Bear's Den have posted a personalized account of the collaboration on their social media today. Read here for the full story.
Over the course of the band's career, they have sold almost 500,000 records and more than 120,000 tickets across Europe, including sold-out shows at London's Roundhouse, Brixton Academy, and Hammersmith Apollo, and arena shows throughout Europe. Bear's Den has played festivals across the globe including Glastonbury (Other Stage), Coachella, Bonnaroo, Pinkpop, Lowlands, Reading & Leeds, Pukkelpop, Lollapalooza, and many more. This summer they supported Neil Young on a run of stadium shows in Germany.
About Jake Graf:
Jake is a London-based actor, writer, and director whose first nine award-winning films have screened at over 100 festivals worldwide. First feature film Lavender is in development with BAFTA nominated MisFits Entertainment (McQueen). Jake aims to elicit acceptance and understanding through the medium of film and is currently working on two TV drama pilots with strong LGBTQ themes. Recent roles include ITV's Butterfly, DBO's Different For Girls and opposite Keira Knightley in feature film Colette. He is a patron for Mermaids, AKT and Ditch The Label and a judge for the European Diversity Awards, The Rainbow Honours and the National Diversity Awards.
Dec 16 - London, UK, St Pancras Church (A CALM Christmas Carol)
Feb 19 - Cambridge, UK, The Junction
February 20 - London, UK - Eventim Apollo
February 26 - Brussels, Belgium - Forest National
February 27 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - AFAS Live