Music

Jason Eady's Stunning 'French Summer Sun' Reflects on the Cost of War, Family History

Brandon Aguilar

Singer-songwriter Jason Eady reflects on the generations impacted by war on the stark and poignant "French Summer Sun" from his forthcoming album To the Passage of Time.

"I come from a long line of soldiers," Eady sings. "And their blood's still flowing through me/ They fought in fields and foreign lands so I could be who I wanted to be."

Eady says the song was inpsired by his own family history and a trip he took to Anzio Beach in Italy.

"I first had the idea for this video as soon as I started thinking about the song itself," Eady says in a press release. "The idea of the song came from visiting Anzio Beach in Italy, where my grandfather fought during World War II. While I was there I thought a lot about how it's not just one life that's lost in battle, but all of the future lives and generations. I wanted something that visually worked with the song, but didn't distract the listener."

For the song's video, Eady used photos submitted by his collaborators in the Sequestered Songwriters group, a relief fund founded by Eady and his wife, singer-songwriter Courtney Patton.

"The idea of having photos of family members that served in the military was important so I reached out to all of the writers in the Sequestered Songwriters group, and asked them to send me photos of family members or friends that they felt would be suitable for the video," Eady says. "When it came time to put it all together we called Casey Pierce, a videographer based in Nashville, who also designed the cover art for my album I Travel On, to take the idea and bring it to life. Casey nailed it, and I think perfectly captured the realness of the lives of the soldiers who have fought."

Watch the video for "French Summer Sun" below.

To the Passage of Time is the follow up to Eady's album I Travel On.

'To the Passage of Time' Track List:

  1. Nothing On You
  2. These Things
  3. Back to Normal
  4. Possibilities
  5. French Summer Sun
  6. Gainesville
  7. The Luxury of Dreaming
  8. Saturday Night
  9. My Best Friend
  10. To the Passage of Time

'French Summer Sun' Lyrics:

He heard the quiet buzzing of a fly
And for a second he wasn't quite sure what it was
Until it tickled his face and he opened his eyes
On a beach in the French summer sun
With Sulphur in the air and the smell of something worse
He leaned up on his elbow and looked around
He wiped some blood from his face and saw his buddy James
Mangled and torn apart on the ground
The medics got him and he thanked god they did
He spent 27 days in a field hospital
Before making the slow trip home to the states
Minus one leg which still seemed impossible
He got a job sorting mail in the Birmingham post office
Five days a week and enough pay to get by
He met a beautiful girl through a mutual friend
And eleven months later that girl was his wife
The nightmares were often and vivid and real
He'd wake up screaming a few times a week
She was patient and kind and she stayed by his side
And in time he found a more restful sleep
By the next year they had them a son
Who got drafted when he turned 18
He went off to fight but he came back whole
He met my mom and they had me

And I come from a long line of soldiers
And their blood's still flowing through me
They fought in fields in foreign lands
So I could be who I wanted to be

I broke the streak and I went to college
Instead of Kabul or Kuwait
I earned my degree
and I got hired to teach Shakespeare and Wordsworth and Yeats
At a decent sized high school outside of Atlanta
And I did the best that I could
That's heady stuff for kids that age
But all in all I think I did some good

(Chorus)

He heard the quiet buzzing of a fly
And for a second he wasn't quite sure what it was
Until it tickled his face and he opened his eyes
And then he died there in that French summer sun
And that girl he would have met sorting mail back in Birmingham
She met a lawyer and they fell in love
So their story ends before it began
On that beach in the French summer sun
And that child she had, well, that wasn't my dad
And I wasn't ever his son
So my story ends before it began
On that beach in the French summer sun

And I come from a long line of soldiers
Whose blood flowed into the sea
War took more than just one life
It took him and his son and me

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Jason Eady's Stunning 'French Summer Sun' Reflects on the Cost of War, Family History