Derek Fawcett's solo debut, The Winter Clothes, draws musically both from his membership in celebrated Chicago acoustic pop quartet Down The Line, and a host of other influences including John Mayer, Tom Petty and Bon Iver. The third song, "Picture Perfect Place" lays out a complicated, sometimes contradictory list of demands and needs for what is expected from an entity that many of us hold dear: The United States Of America. While Fawcett initially grimaced at the notion of writing a 'song about America', he swears that the lyrics began coming to him while he was watching the vote that legalized gay marriage in New York state, and wouldn't let him go. Distant, shimmering guitars evoke the expansive landscape of the American west: Desolate, intimidating, stunning. Fawcett's passionate, stump-speech pleas for the fate and the future of our country seem less like ideology and more like universal truths that make us want to cheer as they raise to a fevered, foaming at the mouth, pitch.
Having long wanted to make improving the social condition a part of his mission as an artist, Fawcett is also pairing each single song release with a different Chicago charity, in this case, Experimental Station in Homewood (www.experimentalstation.org) Each charity receives half of all download sale proceeds and half of ticket sales from the 'song release' shows. With these partnerships, he hopes to bring greater awareness to Chicago’s many important social needs, the organizations that try to serve them every day, and the unique ability that artists have to promote and foster positive change in their communities.
Also inspired by Chicago’s vibrant arts scene, Fawcett has chosen a work by a Chicago visual artist for each single-song's artwork: Unique collaborations that Fawcett hopes will bring Chicago’s musical and visual art scenes closer together. The artwork for "Picture Perfect Place" is Nebraska, a re-imagination of the American flag by Tully Satre.