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WATCH: Robinson & Rohe, “Where I’m Coming From” (One Mic Live)

Apr 12, 2023

WATCH: Robinson & Rohe,

Artist: Robinson & Rohe
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York
Song: “Where I’m Coming From”
Album: Into the Night
Release Date: May 26, 2023
Label: Righteous Babe Records

In Their Words: “I often write songs because I have a question, and the songwriting process gives me a slower pace to think it through. I wrote ‘Where I’m Coming From’ in 2018 in an attempt to trace the story of the people who made me: where they’d been, who they’d become, and who I was, as a consequence of their journey. I was thinking of the broader culture that shaped me: that of European immigrants who came to the United States in the last century and a half, fleeing wars and hunger and poverty, only to land smack in the middle of the US’s foundational racism and injustice. They navigated this thorny terrain and survived, even made better lives for themselves. Their struggle is inspiring and also terrifying. It is, in part, the story of becoming white in America.

“This has always been a threadbare identity, unreal and yet so very consequential. When I laid out the tale of ‘Where I’m Coming From’ beat by beat, the simple irony of it — the descendants of immigrants and refugees now clamoring to build a wall — spoke for itself. ‘Oh, dream of America / Oh, how the dream wears thin / Once your ship comes in, America.’ I wrote this song with folk ballads and balladeers in mind, in particular Woody Guthrie, whose original songs immortalized and uplifted stories of working people, but also the many troubadours who have carried traditional ballads forward til today. Robinson & Rohe humbly add our voices to this river of song. This story isn’t over. My peers, my descendants, and I have the chance to write a different future. But first we need to know where we’re coming from.

“NOTE: After cutting the more ‘hi-fi’ album version of this song — where each voice and instrument had its own microphone and sonic isolation — we decided to play the song one last time all together in one room. This video is a one-take, one-mic, one-camera alternate version. We hope you enjoy!” — Jean Rohe, Robinson & Rohe

Photo credit: Aidan Grant

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WATCH: Robinson & Rohe,
WATCH: Robinson & Rohe,