Norah Jones has shared another new single from her eighth album Pick Me Up Off the Floor, arriving next month.
Were You Watching? is a sly and striking song that features Jones’s vocals and piano with bassist Christopher Thomas, drummer Brian Blade and violinist Mazz Swift, who also adds background vocals alongside Ruby Amanfu and Sam Ashworth.
Jones co-wrote the song’s lyrics with poet Emily Fiskio, a friend whose work had inspired Jones to write poetry outside of the usual process of songwriting.
While 2016’s Day Breaks marked her eagerly anticipated return to piano-based jazz, Jones didn’t intend to make another album. After she finished touring in support of that record, Jones walked away from the grind of the album cycle and recorded a series of singles in a variety of studio sessions that eventually got packaged together into the 2019 release Begin Again.
Now, the unreleased songs from those sessions have become what Jones had initially set out to avoid — an album.
Jones explains that Pick Me Up Off the Floor is meant to find hope amid loss, wandering through the darkness long enough to find the light.
“Living in this country — this world — the last few years, I think there’s an underlying sense of, ‘Lift me up. Let’s get up out of this mess and try to figure some things out,'” says Jones. “If there’s a darkness to this album, it’s not meant to be an impending sense of doom, if feels more like a human longing for connection. Some of the songs that are personal also apply to the larger issues we’re all facing. And some of the songs that are about very specific larger things also feel quite personal.”
The album’s previously released singles include How I Weep, the bonus track Tryin’ to Keep It Together and the Jeff Tweedy collaboration I’m Alive.
Throughout the COVID-19 lockdown, Jones has performed regular Thursday live streams on her Facebook page.
Pick Me Up Off the Floor will be released June 12 via Blue Note.