Connie Lovatt, who was a member of ’90s/’00s groups Containe and The Pacific Ocean, all but retired from music in the mid-’00s, but is now back and releasing her first solo album, Coconut Mirror, on September 27 via Enchanté, the label run by chickfactor founder Gail O’Hara. She made it during the pandemic as a love letter / life guide to her daughter, and asked many of her friends to contribute to it, including Bill Callahan, Jim White (Dirty Three), James McNew (Yo La Tengo), Rebecca Cole (Wild Flag, Pavement), Che Chen (75 Dollar Bill), James Baluyut (Versus, +/-), and more.
“Everyone that I’ve loved is in this record,” says Lovatt. “Everyone that matters—women, men, they’re all in there somewhere … I wanted to show my daughter that I could still make something after giving birth. I wanted to make a record with acoustic guitar where I’m telling my daughter all the stories that mattered to me.”
The opening track from the album is “Gull,” which features McNew, White and Phoebe Gittins on piano. Connie says, “My dad was from England and that’s where the Whitmore grass and the brass animals came from. He was a kid of the war. They would find shells, bombshells that were all torn apart, like different shapes of animals. It’s about him living on a small Caribbean island, going to AA meetings, about him getting sober. He didn’t get to meet [my daughter] Hartley or his other two grandchildren, so I had them meet in the song.” It’s a lovely song and you can listen below.