Words: ROBIN MUMFORD
As Stephanie Phillips picked up her guitar and warmed up her vocals to record her latest single, the result was a beautiful composition of sacchariferous vocals and velvety riffs that conjoin to create a blend of music likened to Dan Fogelberg, James Taylor, as well as female artists such as the Indigo Girls and Cheryl Wheeler.
The poetry of the lyrics and the journeys she is known to take listeners on is recommended for those looking to fight the winter cold with music that warms the heart. From the release of her album ‘Home’ in 2003 to the single ‘Final Kiss Goodbye’ in 2020, Stephanie Phillips has been consistent in her execution of euphonious music.
However, her latest release isn’t so heart-warming. As she picked up her pen to write the lyrics, the mood was sombre. Behind the beauty of ‘The Last Word’ hides an austere meaning as Stephanie pays tribute to the 21 children and teachers who were fatally shot on 24 May 2022 during the Robb Elementary School shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
While most of our readers are lucky enough to live in the United Kingdom, where school shootings seem like a distant nightmare, the United States have reported at least 112 incidents of gunfire on school grounds in 2022 alone, resulting in 41 deaths and 82 injuries.
Gun violence is a growing problem on the other side of the Atlantic, and while people continue to campaign in desperation against the NRA’s chokehold on the country and its government, not enough is being done to stop the repeated trauma that downbeats a nation that almost half a billion people call home, whether proudly or ashamedly.
Stephanie Phillips is just one of those making strides to change the narrative. By virtue of her talented storytelling, which plays a starring role in her alluring vocalism, she can pay a touching tribute to just one of the traumas of a nation she loves and wants better for.
Her heart-rending new single ‘The Last Word’ is available now.
Eliahna “Ellie”, 9
You may be gone from our eyes, but you will never be gone from our hearts.