BATTS duets with Sharon Van Etten on new single ‘Blue’

The pair met when Melbourne artist BATTS opened for Van Etten in 2019

Melbourne songwriter BATTS has shared her first new single since 2020, a collaboration with Sharon Van Etten titled ‘Blue’.

It’s a gorgeous slow burner that sees BATTS – real name Tanya Batt – crooning above an atmospheric bed of guitars and keys, before an equally striking verse from Van Etten. The collaboration stems from the pair meeting each other in 2019, when Batt opened for Van Etten for the latter’s show at Hamer Hall in Melbourne.

“I was in the depths of grief at the time,” Batt explains in a statement. “When ‘Blue’ started to write itself, it clearly reflected how I was feeling. Sharon sent her verse over and the first time I listened to it was such a moment. She just got it, the lyrics were perfectly in keeping with it all. She absolutely completed it. It holds a very special place in my heart.

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“It’s a huge honour to write and create with Sharon someone who has carved such a powerful path in this industry and remains so kind and humble. A truly special human.”

Listen to ‘Blue’ below:

In her own statement, Van Etten said she’d first met Batt “before I ever got to see her perform live”, and described the artist as “a bright huge light who wanted to let everyone in and it only let her light shine even more”.

She continued: “When I actually got to hear her sing, I was taken to another time, another place that she colored for me. Helping me step out of myself and feel another soul’s journey. I felt quite grounded and comforted in her essence and all who surrounded her.

“So it felt quite natural to want to feel included in this group hug that I could tell she was nurturing with everyone around her. She asked me to be a part of this beautiful song and there was no way I was going to say no. To be able to write in real time a response to what she was feeling from the other side of the world felt important and her delivery made it even more so.”

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‘Blue’ marks Batt’s signing to Mistletone in Australia and New Zealand, and launching her own label, I Feel Fine, for the rest of the world.

According to a press release, it signals more music to come from the songwriter, whose last studio album was 2019’s ‘The Grand Tour’, a concept album about the Voyager Mission that saw her collaborating with NASA, using samples collected from the mission. In May of 2020, she followed it up with a cover of David Bowie‘s ‘Space Oddity’.

Van Etten, meanwhile, recently announced her sixth studio album, ‘We’ve Been Going About This All Wrong’. The follow-up to 2019’s ‘Remind Me Tomorrow’ will arrive in May, with no singles released from the record ahead of its release.

“I wanted to approach this release differently, to engage my fans in an intentional way, in an effort to present the album as a whole body of work,” Van Etten explained when announcing the album. “These ten songs are designed to be listened to in order, at once, so that a much larger story of hope, loss, longing and resilience can be told.”

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