Remember Where You Are

Album: What's Your Pleasure? (2020)
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Songfacts®:

  • Jessie Ware closes her What's Your Pleasure? album with this baroque-pop symphony that laments the state of modern politics.

    The heart of the city is on fire
    Can't we keep loving, on the edge of doubt?
    But nothing is different in my arms
    So darling, remember
    Where you are, where you are


    Ware wrote the song with Zimbabwean singer-songwriter Shungudzo and American songsmith Daniel Parker in the summer of 2020. A staunch Labour supporter, Ware was despondent at Boris Johnson's Conservatives getting back into power, and with President Trump's visit to London. Though she felt everything was going up the pan, she still had her marriage to childhood sweetheart Sam Burrows and her children to cuddle. "It felt like us acknowledging the state of what's going on," Ware told the BBC, "and that a bit of intimacy and love can always work a treat."
  • Frequent Arctic Monkeys producer James Ford helmed "Remember Where You Are." Ware explained to the BBC that the song's chamber folk soul sound was inspired by the spiritual optimism of Minnie Ripperton's 1970 soul track "Les Fleurs."

    "We were totally trying to do 'Les Fleurs,'" said Ware. "We wanted it to feel like an overture. For it to be a group vocal but to be sung with drama."
  • Ware envisages the song soundtracking the closing credits of a film version of Margaret Atwood's dystopian novel The Handmaid's Tale. "I was imagining that it would be one of those songs that was played at the end of The Handmaid's Tale," she told The Independent. "It's about observing the world being on fire. And wow, we are living that dystopian nightmare right now."
  • James Ford also plays guitar, bass, keys, synth and drums on the track.
  • Jules Buckley, who is Creative Artist-in-Residence with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, arranged and conducted the string orchestra. Buckley has also worked with Tori Amos, Michael Kiwanuka, Jacob Collier, Massive Attack and Arctic Monkeys.
  • What's Your Pleasure? is Jessie Ware's fourth studio album. It received critical acclaim with the staff of Billboard choosing it as the #1 Dance Album of 2020 and YouTube music critic Anthony Fanontio naming it his top album of the year.
  • Ware fought hard for the song's single release. Her mission eventually succeeded, helped by Barack Obama's endorsement, and her label released it on February 5, 2021. Asked by Official Charts why she was so determined the song should achieve single status, Ware explained:

    "There's that sense of togetherness with it. The fact the chorus is not just me singing it, it's not meant to be. It is everyone together. For it now to be coming out during a pandemic... we can see that light at the end of the tunnel, it feels quite poignant to be bringing it out now."
  • Jessie Ware performed the song to great acclaim on the February 5, 2021 episode of The Graham Norton Show. It resulted in What's Your Pleasure? returning to the Top 10 of the UK albums chart.
  • Jessie Ware recruited her doppelganger, Bond actress Gemma Arterton, for the song's music video. Directed by Dominic Savage (Freefall), it finds Arterton roaming a largely deserted London at night. She said:

    "Jessie's track feels like an anthem for the extraordinary times we have been living through. We wanted the video to be at once a love letter to locked down London; a remembrance of what our wonderful city was and will be again, and a snapshot of this present moment: coming out of loneliness and darkness and stepping into light and a more hopeful future."

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