Here is ‘Camille on Her Death Bed’, recorded live at Coast Records by Charleston duo Finnegan Bell. Warm and bright, the sound of the paired acoustic guitars is simply gorgeous, especially when Warren Bazemore breaks into solo flourishes, fingers sliding and dancing over the frets. Shane Williams’ lead vocal is impassioned and heartfelt and, when the duo sing together, their woven voices bring to life the superb lyrics, a painting in the form of poetry and music.
Finnegan Bell shared the story behind the song with AUK: “‘Camille on Her Deathbed’ is a painting by Monet that I saw on a trip to Paris. It jumped out to me in person, and then we dug a little bit into it and the story was fascinating. Monet and his wife Camille had some of the same dynamics that most every artist at some point has…creating this really heartfelt art that you have poured yourself into completely, believing in what you’ve created even when no one else seems to celebrate it, and then having that friction spills out into relationships. Monet did not enjoy instant celebration of his work by critics and he was certain that he was creating great art, but he kept at it. He would leave his wife and family for months at a time to paint. So this great gift that he had was double-edged sword. It kept him away from home for long stretches, it made him depressed and angry when people did not respond to it the way he believed the work deserved, and then ultimately as his wife is dying….he’s compelled to do the one thing he knows how to do well, and he paints. He said that he was struck by the way that all of the color was leaving the room as she was dying. We were struck by the way that the gift that he was able to give her in that moment was this painting that immortalised her, and that same gift brought joy and pain throughout both of their lives.” It’s an intriguing theme for a song, captured perfectly in the line: “How we loved and longed against the words they said…so I’ll paint you darling, My Camille on Her Deathbed.”
The pair have been writing and performing together since they were both students at The University of South Carolina. In the 1990s and early 2000s, they played in the melodic rock group Silers Bald and, over the years, they have played countless shows, sharing stages with the like of Will Hoge. Known for well-crafted music and gorgeous harmonies, Finnegan Bell are looking to build on the success of their last full-length album, ‘I Was Gone’, which charted in the Apple Music Singer-Songwriters top ten. Check out this excellent single and look out for a new album Finnegan Bell hope to record this year. Enjoy.