Much like his grandmother Nina Simone, Alexander Simone tries to ensure that there is a message in his music. The singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist shares quite a relatable one on his new single “Man Down.”
Alexander is feeling some kinda way on “Man Down.” Like many of us, the troubles of the world have taken their toll on his soul. He communicates the impact everything has had on him as he sings, “There’s a weight on my shoulders / I feel it, it’s weighing me down / I just can’t lift it / I can’t lift it / And that weight on my shoulder / It feels like a boulder right now.” Given what we all have been experiencing in the last few years because of the pandemic and socio-political upheaval, the lyrics will resonate with many.
Musically, the song keeps it simple but soulful with a guitar-like keyboard stroke, minimal bassline and drums. Produced by Chxldz, the track’s intro music and background harmonies will bring D’Angelo to mind, but when he starts to sing, Simone’s tenor is strong and distinctive as he delivers the weary lyrics.
The release of “Man Down” came with a music video as well, and Alexander enlisted director TwiZz to help bring his vision to life. The clip begins with a scene of an apartment in the background with inset shots in the middle of the screen of a drink in a glass on a table and pills spilling onto that same table. A man’s hand picks up the drink before Alexander appears for the first time sitting by a window smoking a cigarette and exhaling in stark black-and-white film.
As his vocals drop in, we watch him walking into a liquor store and picking up a few bottles of alcohol but his money being funny when he gets to the register. The scenes cut back and forth between the liquor store, Simone smoking in solitude and the singer sitting in a chair sipping on his drink and getting progressively more inebriated while trying to dull his visible pain.
“Man Down” is a powerful piece of music that speaks to where many find themselves right now in the midst of the world’s madness. Alexander Simone lets us know that the struggle is real and universal.
Having a famous last name might get you in the door, but having talent will keep you in the room, and Alexander Simone has it in abundance. In addition to his solo work, he records with his band Whodat? out of Asbury Park, New Jersey. Listen to “Man Down” and watch its visual below and make sure to keep Alexander Simone on your radar.