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Tai Shan's 'Burn It Down' Celebrates Women's Anger Fueling Change

Tai Shan
Becky Yee

Tai Shan

Tai Shan's new song "Burn It Down" "stems from my focus on how women suppress our anger." The video for it, premiering exclusively below, shows what happens when they don't.

The Nashville singer-songwriter’s Women's History Month clip, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote, features footage from various protests and demonstrations, from the suffragettes of the early 20th century to the Women's March after Donald Trump's inauguration in 2017. It also highlights a number of historic activists from the realms of politics, environment and animal rights.

"My goal was to acknowledge and recognize how women's anger inspired them to rally for change," Shan, who has a six-month-old daughter, tells Billboard. "I wanted to talk about how it's OK to be angry, OK to be frustrated and deal with it. One thing I find very fascinating is women make up two-thirds of the activist community; When you look at all these marching videos, you're seeing all these women out there speaking their mind, saying what they believe in. I wanted to really trumpet those efforts."

"Burn It Down" hails from Traveling Show, Shan's fourth album, which comes out April 3. It's her first release since moving to Nashville in 2018 -- after being "priced out" of Seattle -- and it was inspired by her travels as a touring musician, crisscrossing North America with her husband and chronicling their encounters along the way.

"I love writing other people's stories," Shan says. "The last two albums I released were inspired by books. Traveling Show is taken from different stories of people we met along the way -- a woman who told me about an auto accident she'd gotten into, a friend in Canada who had fallen off a ladder and hurt his back and how his relationship with his girlfriend at the time strengthened after the fall. It's just me telling these real stories rather than finding a character in a book who needs a song."

While Traveling Show's release is still on track, Shan is largely homebound, waiting like so many others for novel coronavirus restrictions to lift so she can play again. "I totally understand," says Shan, who scrapped plans for a release show on April 4 at Nashville's Bowery Vault. "Normally I tour through the summer, but we have to wait and see what this summer looks like as we head into it. Like the service industry, in the entertainment industry we're screwed. We just have to wait and watch what happens."

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