California Halo Blue

Album: Angel Miners & the Lightning Riders (2019)

Songfacts®:

  • The Woolsey Fire was a destructive wildfire that wreaked havoc from November 8-21, 2018, in California's Los Angeles and Ventura Counties. Many musicians lost their homes, including Miley Cyrus, Fred Durst, Neil Young, Lil Pump and Robin Thicke.

    Awolnation frontman Aaron Bruno's Malibu property was in the direct path of the blaze. His home was miraculously spared, but the musician lost his beloved studio. This anthemic song plays like a journal entry of the day.
  • Bruno was out on tour at the time of the blaze and was on the phone to his wife as she evacuated with their dogs. He recounts their dialogue in this song's first verse.

    And she said
    I packed the car and grabbed the dogs and packed up plenty of food
    Don't worry
    And grabbed your journals, grabbed your soul, and grabbed your favorite shoes


    The second verse details Bruno's apprehension at the time.

    I couldn't walk, I couldn't talk
    You know I couldn't sit down
    All I could do is wait around and pray for my home town
  • The "California Halo Blue" title references what Bruno was thinking as the incident took place. He recalled: "I kind of had this hopeful fantasy in my head visualizing there being a halo around California made of water, and that it could put out the fires."
  • The song's music video was directed by Ravi Dhar, who also shot Awolnation's "Handyman" clip. The visual is a retelling of Bruno's experience featuring actual firefighters who fought the California blazes.

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