Album: Helplessness Blues (2011)
Play Video


  • On Helplessness Blues, singer Robin Pecknold appears preoccupied with matters of selfishness, helplessness and responsibility. "Could I wash my hands of just looking out for me?" he asks on this opening track. He explained to UK newspaper The Sun that the song was penned in January 2010 and he wanted "to write something that would pose a number of questions that the rest of the record explores."
  • Musically, Pecknold cited John Jacob Niles and "some of his melodic tics" as an inspiration for this song. Bob Dylan has alluded to the American musicologist and folk-singer as an early influence on him.


Be the first to comment...

Editor's Picks

Songs in Famous Movie Scenes: Tarantino Edition

Songs in Famous Movie Scenes: Tarantino EditionMusic Quiz

Whether he's splitting ears or burning Nazis, Quentin Tarantino uses memorable music in his films. See if you can match the song to the scene.

Jack Blades of Night Ranger and Damn Yankees

Jack Blades of Night Ranger and Damn YankeesSongwriter Interviews

Revisit the awesome glory of Night Ranger and Damn Yankees: cheesily-acted videos, catchy guitar licks, long hair, and lyrics that are just plain relatable.

Martyn Ware of Heaven 17

Martyn Ware of Heaven 17Songwriter Interviews

Martyn talks about producing Tina Turner, some Heaven 17 hits, and his work with the British Electric Foundation.

Protest Songs

Protest SongsMusic Quiz

How well do you know your protest songs (including the one that went to #1)?

Howard Jones

Howard JonesSongwriter Interviews

Howard explains his positive songwriting method and how uplifting songs can carry a deeper message.

Holly Knight ("The Best," "Love Is A Battlefield")

Holly Knight ("The Best," "Love Is A Battlefield")Songwriter Interviews

Holly Knight talks about some of the hit songs she wrote, including "The Warrior," "Never" and "The Best," and explains some songwriting philosophy, including how to think of a bridge.