Jessi Williams & Coyote’s debut single “Roam, Little Gypsy, Roam” signals the arrival of an artist who is not afraid to get deeply intimate. A profoundly personal song composed by Williams for her fellow songstress and longtime friend Margo Price, “Roam” features poetic lyrics that examine the female expectations and pressures experienced first as a young adult, all the way to motherhood.
Produced by Little Ugly and co-directed by Kimberly Stuckwisch and Melora Donoghue, the video has just premiered on Buzzbands.LA. In the film, the dreamlike atmosphere is matched to the physical and metaphorical struggles of Jessi’s past, present and future, embodied in the casting of her real-life mother and daughter. The twangy guitar and lilting piano cast a beautiful spell over the visuals, elucidating the ideas of motherhood, aging and domesticity across three generations.
“Career or Family? That’s a choice women have had to make since the dawn of the sexual revolution and beyond,” Kimberly and Melora say together. “Today, women are finding ways to choose both, but the path is still paved with hard considerations, compromise, and balance.”
“In our video for ‘Roam, Little Gypsy, Roam,’ by casting three generations of the same family and using clever camera tricks, the story seamlessly moves through a day in the life of our heroine as she is confronted with her past and future selves. Ultimately, in the end she must decide which path to take to fulfill her true ambitions. It’s something we as women deal with daily, but should feel liberated by the freedom to choose.”
The country singer-songwriter has reemerged as Jessi Williams and Coyote, the five-piece project she put on hiatus before spending the past seven years as a multi-instrumentalist in The Lonely Wild. It started with a notebook, where Jessi vented her frustrations of balancing a demanding tour schedule, a day job and being a single mother. The songs came to life in the form of Coyote (pronounced Kye-Oat), comprised of Jessi (songwriter and rhythm guitarist), Chris Sousa (bass), Conan Skyrme (drums), and former The Lonely Wild members Robin Harris (guitar) and Jaime Rosas (mandolin).
Recorded at the legendary East-West Studios, “Roam” features biting lyrics that explore the dynamics of transitioning from a young, free-spirited woman to a wife and mother. Jessi penned the song for Margo Price before her friend burst into the mainstream consciousness with the 2019 Grammy nomination for Best New Artist. Close pals since their single-girl days in Nashville, their free-spirited nights of drinking, smoking and playing music in Margo’s basement came to a halt when Jessi got pregnant and moved to Kansas.
Says Jessi, “Suddenly, my life was strikingly different than the one I’d been living. Margo wrote a song for me called ‘The Ballad of Jessi Williams.’ I remember it had a great line about trading cigarettes for apron strings. When Margo got married and subsequently pregnant with her boys a few years later, I wrote ‘Roam’ as a ‘response song,’ commenting on our introductions into adulthood.”
Stuckwisch directed Margo Price’s “All American Made” music video ahead of her Grammy nomination, bringing the Jessi-Margo connection full-circle. Emotionally affecting and fraught with a melancholic tension, “Roam” presents insight into the difficult choices and sacrifices we make to actualize into our authentic selves.