English musician Charlie Simpson has a strong musical pedigree dating back to one of his mother's ancestors, Sir William Sterndale Bennett (1816-1875), who was a distinguished classical music composer of the romantic school. Charlie first shot to fame as the lead guitarist of Busted, who were one of the most popular pop acts in the UK during the mid 2000s. Unfulfilled by the pop star lifestyle, Simpson formed the rock act Fightstar in 2003. Following three studio albums, Fightstar initiated an extended hiatus in 2010, allowing Simpson to focus on his solo career. This is the lead single from his debut solo full-length album entitled Young Pilgrim, which was released on August 15, 2011. An acoustic-driven record, it was heavily influenced by the 1970s Americana music Simpson listened to growing up.
Simpson told Digital Spy about the song: "It's one of the more instrument-heavy songs on the record - I wanted to strike a balance between the acoustic nature and more upbeat instruments. It's also the first track I've ever written with a piano, so it's a good contrast to other songs on the album."
Simpson was asked by CMU what inspired Young Pilgrim? He replied: "I think this record was inspired by looking at life in retrospect. 'Young Pilgrim' feels like a journey to me, and it was nice to look back over my life so far and be able to write about it. I dug out a lot of my 70s Americana records as well to feed my inspiration. Those albums will always be very special."
Simpson told CMU about his songwriting process: "I tend to start writing on either an acoustic guitar or a piano. Once I have found some melodies I like I then start to build the track up in my head, which usually means writing a drum part and then adding other instrumentation. I usually leave the lyrics until last, once I have nailed down all of the melodies."