With the new release format, I might jump back and fourth a bit between releases and these blogs.
Just ahead of Christmas 2022 I low-key put Littlething out on Static Unveiled, and then later Instagram, so you might’ve already heard it but we haven’t really talked about it yet.
Before we poke through those lyrics, listen to Jimmy Eat World’s original recording first:
And now here’s mine:
I really love the Invented record because the production on it is expertly done. It’s a record I constantly feel doesn’t get enough attention and I’m still not sure why.
When I went to try my hand at Littlething I knew I had to shake the track up a little bit, but I also didn’t want to lose the original feeling that radiates off the original recording.
I sort of stumbled into the lead guitar line that you hear right off the top of this one and that really shaped the entire cover. I was actually really nervous to add any vocals in case they didn’t gel properly with the line. It ended up instead being one of my favourite covers to date, I’m really really pleased with how it turned out. And I sort of hate when that happens because now I’ve gotta really step it up for the next ones and even though you can’t see a physical ceiling from where I sit, you always feel like you’re kinda close to it.
Lyrically, Littlething is another shining example of how the keep it simple approach really works.
I’ve probably said this before but one of the things that has always drawn me to Jimmy Eat World’s songwriting is because they know exactly how to place you exactly where they are, whether it’s a feeling or a physical place. Right off the top of “Littlething” it’s like being a character in Rollercoaster Tycoon who’s cherrypicked up out of the line for the Tilt-A-Whirl and over to the new cotton candy stand – except you’re actually placed inside an empty office after all your coworkers have gone home and you find yourself staring out at the street below, full of bustling strangers making their way to their dinners, parties or homes. All of us have felt that push to want to reach out to someone and noticed the hesitation that comes with it – for whatever reason, we have this keen ability to feel most insecure when we’re completely alone.
The tragic circumstance of that insecurity is that you know all you want is to not feel that way; To not be alone and to be with them (whoever they are) instead. Or maybe it’s less of an insecurity and more of a fight with your morality – the thing or reason that you hesitate to pick park that car, drop that phone, lay on the floor — er, sorry, wrong song.
Then we come right out of that chorus and into this next scene where we’re no longer the cherry-picked attendee of the amusement park, but instead viewing the whole experience as though through our own TV’s. It’s this mix of getting specific and personal combined with the aforementioned simplicity that allows you to imagine yourself inside the story that Jimmy Eat World gets right just about every time on pop-ballads like Littlething (I consider it a bit of a ballad anyway).
Having been one of the girls with hair all in her face in the cab, this one hits a little too close to home and I think that comes through in my own performance of the song.
Hope you enjoyed it!
Support the project by buying “Littlething” on Bandcamp!
Our bandcamp page is brand new but it’s going to be the home of all our covers. As we finish albums, we’ll put the songs in the respective places and see what kind of record we ended up making. You can support me and the project by buying the songs here with all the proceeds going towards the Believe In What You Want fundraiser in support of mental health services via CAMH.