Hancock native Nyiko Beguin’s album ‘Honesty’ set for release

  • “Honesty” the full length solo album from Hancock native Nyiko Beguin releases Friday, April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his debut full length solo album "Honesty" on April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory—

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his full-length debut solo album ‘Honesty’ on Friday, April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his debut full length solo album "Honesty" on April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory—

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his debut full length solo album "Honesty" on April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory—

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his debut full length solo album "Honesty" on April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory—

  • Hancock native Nyiko Beguin will release his debut full length solo album "Honesty" on April 9. Photo by Niles Gregory—

Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Published: 4/8/2021 1:53:35 PM

Exploring the theme of love and relationships through musical expression is not a new concept, but in Nyiko Beguin’s debut solo album Honesty you’ll get a firsthand look at the Hancock native’s raw feelings surrounding his personal thoughts.

The first track “Make You Feel” sets the stage for what to expect from the 11-track album, set for an official release on Friday, April 9 through Trailing Twelve, the record label Beguin started almost a decade ago. “Make You Feel” is about young love, while the title track “Honesty” explores the idea of being too eager and too honest in a relationship.

“There’s just something so complex, endless and universal about love,” Beguin said. “And it’s a great avenue to teach.”

“Like The Movies” portrays the influence that movies, television and media have on love and relationships and the importance of being present and not setting unattainable expectations. “Call The Boys” is what Beguin calls the outlier of the album, focusing on gender identity, toxic masculinity, and emotional development in young men.

Beguin said his early writings were influenced by his interest in EMO, pop and punk, but has evolved his style and his debut full length album is “a vibrant, glistening slab of retro pop, effortlessly balancing earnest messages with elegant sonic expression.”

It’s an exciting moment for Beguin’s music career and one he hopes listeners will connect with.

“I’m proud to have my name be on this project,” he said.

Beginning in early 2020, Beguin began releasing a new single every six to 10 weeks to generate some excitement around the project. It has been mastered since June of 2019, but the pandemic pushed the full release date back to 2021. From his home studio, he engineered, produced, and mixed the entire album, giving him the kind of control he craved for this album.

“I’ve always been someone who wants to be in the driver’s seat creatively,” he said.

He had some help from guitarist Niles Gregory, bassist Stone Irr, and producer Kyler Hurley, “to bring the chosen demos into the territory of live instrumentation,” Beguin said and the entire thing was mastered by Steve Kitch in London.

Beguin views Honesty as his first “proper full length album” as a solo artist. He’s been playing and collaborating with other musicians his entire life, and has even put out music with his name on it. But there’s something different about this project. It’s more than just a couple songs, but a collection that was years in the making.

Some of the songs date back to when he was living in Vermont, while others were written after his move to Los Angeles.

“It really does capture the growth of moving across the country, finding myself being more comfortable with writing and producing,” Beguin said.

Over the course of a four year span, Beguin wrote somewhere in the neighborhood of 40 or 50 songs, creating demos along the way. He knew it was the start of a long awaited solo project, but not all of them could make the cut. By the winter of 2018, he started to whittle down the collection, enlisting the help of some musical friends to try and figure out which ones were the strongest.

“Some of those songs may not see the light of day,” Beguin said.

From there he came up with the top 15 that felt the most cohesive for an album, moving on to the engineering and producing phase and eventually trimming it down to the 11 that appear on Honesty.

The project’s lengthy timeline was due to Beguin being pulled in many different directions as a young artist and professional.

“There were a lot of different hats I was wearing during that time,” Beguin said. “And sometimes my own artistic projects had to take a back seat.”

Beguin, who grew up in Hancock and graduated from ConVal, spent seven years in Vermont and it’s where his idea for creating a record label came about. He needed a way to put his music out into the world. So he started Trailing Twelve almost a decade ago.

“It was really out of necessity,” Beguin said. “I needed to put something official together for the stuff I was releasing.” He put out an EP and soon he started getting some interest from other musicians.

“Folks started reaching out to get their music on the label,” he said. At the time he was working in banking, but he kept feeling this pull towards music, both creating and helping others realize their dreams.

“It felt there were these two worlds I was straddling,” Beguin said. And it was the music industry that won out. Beguin knew if he wanted his business to grow, a move would be necessary. Off he went to Los Angeles with the idea of expanding the reach of Trailing Twelve.

He currently has nine artists on the label, including locals such as Duncan Pelletier, Party of the Sun and LNDNGS.

For more information on Beguin’s music, visit trailingtwelve.com/.


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