- OCIE ELLIOTT (CA) -
Ocie Elliott pen tunes that feel lived-in. You can hear their memories, moments, and emotions in the dusty acoustic guitars, the sparse production, and the graceful harmonies between Jon Middleton and Sierra Lundy. Their experiences as a couple pour into a living and breathing vision for 21st century folk amplified by alternative nuance and unassuming pop appeal. After gathering hundreds of millions of streams and earning widespread acclaim, the JUNO Award-nominated group take another leap forward together on their 2023 Know The Night EP \[Nettwerk Music Group].
“We each bring separate things to the table,” notes Jon. “From the first time we sang together, we instantly reacted like, ‘Wow, this feels so good’. Sierra forces me to be a much better songwriter. There was a connection and synergy when we started harmonizing, and it’s only become stronger.”
“Much like our relationship, there’s something unique about us singing together,” adds Sierra. “If I’m weak in some way, Jon’s voice will be there. I’m a severe perfectionist, and I’m quite ADHD. I can never finish anything. Having Jon there, he’s so prolific. He’s always getting things done. Both of our personalities forge better music than we could make separately.” They’ve become quite the presence as a unit too...
You can hear, see, and feel their evolution across a series of projects, including EP \, We Fall In \, Tracks \, In That Room \, Slow Tide \, A Place \, and What Remains \. Averaging over 3 million monthly listeners on Spotify, “Down by the Water” reeled in 41.5 million Spotify streams with “Tender Love” at 36.4 million Spotify streams, “I Got You, Honey” at 28.4 million Spotify streams, and “Be Around” at 21.1 million Spotify streams.
Plus, they landed major syncs in Grey’s Anatomy and NETFLIX’s Sweet Magnolias in addition to earning acclaim courtesy of American Songwriter, Atwood Magazine, Exclaim, and PopMatters, among others. Moreover, Ocie Elliott packed countless headline shows and shared stages with Joshua Radin, Sons of The East, Kim Churchill, and Hollow Coves. Not to mention, the pair picked up a nod in the category of “Breakthrough Artist of the Year” at the 2022 JUNO Awards.
After spending much of 2022 on the road supporting their previous EP What Remains and writing in between, the musicians entered the studio with John Raham behind the board as engineer in 2023 to record Know The Night. Throughout the process, the EP’s central theme crystallized.
“The link between many of the songs is the exploration of light and dark inside of us,” notes Sierra. “You can give into the darkness—hence the name Know The Night—or you can choose to look at life in a different light. Post-COVID, we did so much traveling. Our mental health improved, and we began to think and feel more positively.”
The first single “Free” coasts along on breezy guitar as Sierra’s breathy harmonies instantly transfix. She declares, “I am free. I’m free in my mind,” as Jon counters over the soft rhythm of a cymbal. “No matter how trapped you are at work or by duty, you have a choice to be free in your mind,” says Sierra. “It’s something nobody can take away from you.”
“For me, the song is about those moments in life where you’re relaxed yet also excited and recognize a kind of infinite potential,” adds Jon. “The world is your oyster, so to speak.” Then, there’s “This Beautiful Life.” With an upbeat and buoyant spirit, it filters various memories into a sweet and nostalgic anthem. “The song is a series of moments and vignettes,” adds Jon. “We went to Salt Spring at one point during the spring of 2021. It was stunning. It was in the middle of the Pandemic, and we were finally away from home at a cabin. I was playing guitar out on the porch, and it inspired the song.
Lithe strumming sets the tone for “Come On By.” Jon’s gravelly intonation resounds with an invitation and a plea, “Come on by and make the noise in my mind go quiet.”
“It’s about times of feeling down, uninspired, and low,” Jon continues. “You have these certain friends in your life who will take you out of it. You forget your troubles because they make you smile, laugh and feel happy.”
In the end, Ocie Elliott’s relationship and music are as beautiful as ever. “There’s a special feeling when I’m singing with Sierra,” Jon leaves off. “It’s hard to describe, but it’s incredible.”
Sierra concludes, “We want you to be able to listen to our music and feel like a song is on your side, understands you, knows you, and supports you.”
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