Sharon Van Etten’s fans have gotten used to the indie singer-songwriter emptying the depths of her feelings for years. For her new single, “Not Myself,” she turned immense sorrow following June’s mass shooting at Orlando’s Pulse club into a rallying cry for social change.
“I originally wanted to raise money for the victims and their families, but I knew the issue was bigger than this,” Van Etten told Bandcamp, which premiered the track. “I wrote ‘Not Myself’ for the victims of this horrific event, but I chose to support the research and awareness work of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund: a movement of Americans working together to end gun violence and build safer communities.”
Van Etten was at home in New Jersey the morning she learned of the shooting at the gay nightclub that killed 49 and injured more than 50. Feeling safe with her parents, she felt immense empathy towards the victims who’d had such a personal space invaded by violence. “I want you to be yourself around me,” she pleads repeatedly on the tender track, which finds her voice ranging from a low-end hum to skyward cry.
Fans can benefit the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund directly by purchasing the new song via Bandcamp. Take a listen below:
Van Etten has been releasing critically-acclaimed music for Jagjaguwar Records since 2011. Her most recent release was last year’s I Don’t Want To Let You Down EP.