Letitia VanSant’s new song, “Come Sit by My Fire,” came from witnessing “probably the worst moment” of her friend’s life — when he learned his mother died.
“I was overwhelmed by how I didn’t know what to do,” VanSant said. “I just realized how many times I failed to reach out to somebody who was grieving because I felt awkward or I didn’t know what to say.”
The song — whose video we’re debuting above — is the Baltimore singer-songwriter’s resolution to “when in doubt, reach out.”
“I can’t walk that lonesome valley for you, I can only sing you to sleep,” she sings on the track from her new album, “Gut it to the Studs,” due out Friday.
VanSant, who grew up in Lutherville and now calls Mayfield home, has been working on the follow-up to 2015’s “Parts & Labor” for the past two years. She’ll celebrate its release — her first nationally distributed studio album — with a sold-out show at Towson University public radio station WTMD on Feb. 9. The station will broadcast the show live starting at 8:30 p.m., she said. Baltimore musicians Caleb Stine and Mark Whitake will open for VanSant.
Directed by Benson Greene and shot in Atlanta in November, “Come Sit by My Fire” is a straightforward performance clip where VanSant performs live — no lip-syncing here. The stripped-back look was “out of a budgetary necessity,” she said with a laugh, but for other reasons as well.
“I’ve been really trying to write songs that speak for themselves more, and that don’t require a lot of explanation,” VanSant said.
For more information, go to letitiavansant.com.