Pick of the Week: Norah Jones “Running”

Norah Jones, Running, Pick of the Week, Visions, WERS 88.9 FM
Graphics by Sarah Tarlin

By Avieana Rivera, Staff Writer

Norah Jones’ newest single “Running” is certainly not your classic Jones ballad. The lead single of her newest album Visions is upbeat, jazzy, and according to Jones, “kind of garage-y but also soulful.” The song tells the all too familiar tale of self-sabotage, and running away from a love out of fear of ruining it.

 

NORAH JONES’ NEW SOUND

Visions will be Jones’ first album in nearly four years (apart from her 2022 Christmas album, I Dream of Christmas). Jones makes her way back to the music scene with a new, mature sound and (quite literally) a dream. 

In a statement, Jones said that most of the album came to her in the night, either waking her up in the middle of the night or popping into her head in the moments right before falling asleep. “‘Running’ was one of them where you’re half asleep and kind of jolted awake,” she said. 

The song itself also explores themes of dreaming, and almost makes you feel as if you’re in a dream-like state yourself. With heavenly, slightly far-away background vocals humming throughout, Jones speaks of her dilemma in short sentences, almost being interrupted by the commotion of the background vocals. 

The song also has the dreamlike quality of feeling like you’ve experienced something before. Jones sings “In the night, the devil knocks on my door.” Then, “Another laugh, and the same thing happened before,” alluding to a recurring dream, or falling in love and knowing how it will end. The song opens and ends with identical hums, making you wonder if it was all a dream after all. 

 

THE DREAM-LIKE MUSIC VIDEO

The song also features a music video with a ‘70s vibe that matches the album cover perfectly. In the video, Jones is running in front of a background that looks straight out of an old western movie. The graininess of the film and the desert hills are a stark contrast from Jones’ perfectly exposed bright blue eyeshadow and richly colored striped dress. Running alongside her is a child and teen version of her, in matching ‘70s attire. 

The video almost feels like a strange dream itself, with the characters looking out of place, and running the whole time with no clear destination. In the end, Jones stands alone. After dancing in the red light of the desert night, she sings her final “ooh” and stares into the headlights of a car coming towards her in the background. She turns her gaze to the camera for just over a second before the screen goes black. 

 

WHAT’S NEXT FOR NORAH JONES?

Jone’s new album Visions will be out on March 8th. According to Jones, the 12 song album will feature lots more dreamlike melodies. Apart from that, Jones is hitting the road this summer with a nine stop tour kicking off right here in Boston! You can catch Jones at MGM Music Hall at Fenway on May 6th.

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