Interviews / Music

Caleb Hearn Ruminates on His Childhood in New EP, “1200 sq ft”

Although he might not have known it at the time, Caleb Hearn was building his creative foundation throughout his formative years. “My childhood was extremely influential in shaping the type of songs I write and who I am as an artist,” he explains. “Many of the songs I’ve written, especially those on this project, draw on specific experiences I had as a child. These memories allow me to write about authentic experiences and easily express myself in my songs, making my art more authentic.” Impressions of the past guide his musical direction. “So much of what I write stems from my memories, and I am positive my lyrics wouldn’t be the same without these core memories. When writing my songs, I don’t usually have an end goal in mind for what I want them to be about. Instead, I let memories flow and pick one to write a song around. Without these memories, I wouldn’t have anything to write about.”

The profound emotional impact of those memories take center stage in Caleb’s latest project, 1200 sq ft. “The new EP is very true to me and gives listeners a glimpse into my childhood, since all of the songs were written about real experiences I went through. Despite these songs being about my life, there are a variety of feelings captured throughout the EP, and I think any listener will be able to find a song they relate to. Sonically, the new EP has a different sound than most of my previous projects. I focused on making these songs sound more organic, incorporating a wider variety of instruments, and creating a bit more of a folkier vibe.” Devastating news prompted a narrative thread to coalesce around his youth. “Honestly, I didn’t plan to make an EP about my childhood — the EP idea was something I stumbled upon while writing songs for myself. Recently, I found out my grandma had terminal cancer, and during that moment, I didn’t know what else to do besides write a song about it. After I wrote that song, ‘½ as good as her,’ it opened my eyes to my other childhood memories, and I began to write about them. It felt therapeutic to write about my childhood, so I just continued to do it. Eventually, I realized that I had a lot of meaningful songs about different parts of my childhood, so I decided to create a project around it.” In those 1200 square feet, Caleb learned important life lessons. “My childhood home taught me many lessons, including that things don’t have to be perfect to be meaningful. The house I grew up in was small, and I dealt with a lot of problems in that space. However, despite things not being perfect, my childhood home helped me create the foundation for what I believe a home should and should not be and what values I want to base my home on in the future.”

Some of his happiest moments revolved around nourishment – of the stomach and the soul. Breaking bread takes on a special meaning. “I’m a big foodie and love to try new things. Food is the center of many of my memories because it has the ability to bring special people in my life together. When I think about some of the best times I’ve had with someone, I think about sitting down and having a meal with them. For example, my grandma always makes soup in the winter, and I know that whenever I see her in the winter months, I can expect to sit down with her to eat her soup together. Food is more than just something I eat since it brings the people I love together and creates lifelong memories.” Co-writer and producer Marc Scibilia helped Caleb to bring his vision to life. “Working with Marc was an incredible experience, and I have nothing but positive things to say about him. When I had my first session with Marc, I didn’t know what to expect, but we actually wrote 1200 sq ft when we first met. Going into the session, I had the title in mind but had no idea where to go with it. However, Marc and I instantly connected, and he helped me discover how I could create a song out of it, and we did just that. Overall, he is an extraordinarily talented and kind guy. I will definitely be putting out more projects with him in the future.” Caleb is awaiting the reception of his labor of love. “I’m looking forward to a lot of new music and seeing everyone’s reaction to 1200 sq ft.” Stream 1200 sq ft HERE

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Caleb Hearn Ruminates on His Childhood in New EP, “1200 sq ft.” Photo Credit: Stephanie Siau.

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