In the fall of 2013, I was drawn to a woman named Alex Winston. I had stumbled upon her 2012 album King Con and fell in love with it. It was full of pop weirdness, songs I found both catchy and totally bizarre. But when I searched for more information about it online, there was almost nothing available. I wanted to know why.
I found her contact info on her website and wrote her an email, telling her about how, in spite of her music being miles outside my wheelhouse as someone who listens almost exclusively to washed up hardcore bands, I loved King Con. I asked if we could hang out around her forthcoming Brooklyn Bowl show and I could write about her.
We met up for dinner in our shared neighborhood and she told me everything—how the album’s release was at the nexus of bad luck, between a dissolving label and poor management. A few nights later, I saw her live show for the first time. Afterwards, a woman who I recognized as her backup singer tapped me on the shoulder. “Are you Dan?” she asked. “Alex would like to see you.” I felt like I was in trouble, like I was getting called to the principal’s office. I expected to walk up the stairs into a greenroom full of industry types and hangers-on. But when I got up there, Alex was sitting there alone, relaxing in a big leather chair. She wanted to know when we would hang out next. There’s always a skepticism in the back of your mind as a music writer, a fear that artists are only buttering you up for positive coverage. So I appreciated her kindness but also took it with a grain of salt.
I published the article and called it “Alex Winston Should Be Famous,” not only because I liked the sound of it, but because had her album not been met with a clusterfuck of problems, I’m convinced she would already be. Alex was true to her word and over the last year and a half, she and I have become friends.
Over the course of our friendship, I've watched Alex dig herself out of the rut that King Con created for her and start again. In a weird way, she told me, the day my article published was the beginning of her closure. For some reason that’s still a mystery to me, she would occasionally ask for my opinion on music she was working on that dealt with this experience. Eventually, her path to rebirth gave way to her forthcoming album, the three best songs of which are featured on this new EP. There's an epic poppy opener in which she returns to form, a personal slow jam, and an upbeat kicker that sounds right out of the Springsteen book of songwriting. When she asked me what I thought of the title of the EP, I didn’t even have to ask what it meant. I knew. It’s about the day she let it all go and started again. The day she died.