For Callum Beattie, 2017 was the best of times and it was the worst of times. Then it was the best of times all over again. To get to that positive point he just had to skip the UK, establish himself somewhere he’d never been before, learn a new language, survive a couple of iffy flat-shares, have his heart broken (and break a heart or two), and write the best songs of his young career.
That tumultuous time two years ago? It started on the upswing, with the release of Beattie’s debut single ‘We Are Stars’ a rhythmic piano belter that showcased his muscularly soulful voice, ability to pack an emotive punch, and his deft way with a melody. This was followed by second single Man Behind The Sun that was an airtime hit at Radio 2. The song’s success catalysed a run of headline and festival shows, including a debut Glastonbury performance.
And then the wheels fell off. By the end of the year, his relationship with his hometown girlfriend came to an end. Some tough decisions had to be made, on the one hand, the refocusing and rebuilding of Callum Beattie meant discarding a lot of the songs he’d already recorded for his debut album. On the other, it meant leaving London for Berlin. The change and heartbreak were, in the end, liberating. “That’s when I started again writing again because I’d experienced these ups and downs,” he reflects. “Ultimately it refocused my songwriting,” he acknowledges. “A lot of my new songs are relationship-based and written about my experiences.”