Overboard

Album: Overboard (2014)

Songfacts®:

  • The title track of The Verve Pipe's Overboard album started as a love story about a girl swimming in Lake Superior and then turned more somber. "'There's a girl in Michigan, up in Lake Superior,'" frontman Brian Vander Ark told Billboard magazine, reciting the start of the song's chorus. "The puzzle as a songwriter was: Why do we care? After weeks of trying to figure that out, I realized that we would care if she were dead."
  • Vander Ark wrote the song with his friend, acclaimed actor Jeff Daniels. The Verve Pipe frontman reached out to his pal with the beginning idea of the song, a chorus and a verse, and Daniels sent back his own completed version, along with a 2,000-word short story. "When Brian sent it to me, the song was already well on its way, I just helped him focus it a little bit," Daniels told Billboard. "He's always been a strong songwriter, but he seems to be more and more interested in being a writer who writes songs. That's harder than trying to write towards some corporate idea of what a good song should be."

    "By staying true to himself, he's writing things only he sees, only he hears, and only he can write," Daniels continued. "The hope is that the listener will identify with the characters in his story-put-to-music as people they might know, recognize, and imagine as real. If they do, like any well told story, the song works. 'Overboard' is a good example of that kind of writing."
  • The video was directed by Lawrence Carroll, who first worked with the band in 1996 on the visual for "Photograph." The girl in the "Overboard" video is Carroll's daughter, Rory. "We had a small crew and we did it," Vander Ark told Songfacts. "That's a testament to him and his cinematographer. They were great, tireless workers for three days, on the set at four in the morning to catch the sunrise in the winter. It was freezing, but everybody got in the water. It was in Lake Superior, which was half frozen."

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