Who Is Dana Williams?

Kieran Kohorst

You’d be forgiven for your unfamiliarity with Dana Williams - not too long ago, the LA singer-songwriter wasn’t so sure who she was, either. Often, versions of ourselves drift from each other at a pace beyond our control, and we’re left to wonder who we are on the other side of that gulf. It is this space that Williams explores with devout curiosity on her newest project End Of The World, providing ample introspection to better reveal the person and artist at the center of these songs. Having written pointedly about heartache and its accompanying break in the past, Williams is more concerned with her own growth on the EP. The title track investigates her motivations with a purpose. “Imagine the world is ending,” she thought to herself while framing the song. “How would you like to spend your time? What matters in the end?”

Williams’s lust for self-discovery was born in part from tragedy, as the loss of her father pushed her towards some of the themes of End Of The World. “Everyone I Love” is the first time she was able to write about him, who was a legendary guitarist in his own right. “‘Everyone I Love’ is about grief and the anxieties surrounding it; the obsessive compulsive tendency to dwell on impending doom,” she shares. “Over the years I've struggled with grief and haven't been able to put it into words. This song is my first attempt at writing about grieving the loss of my dad.” The song is performed with just the amount of care as is required, an optimistic air carrying Williams through her struggle. Across all tracks on the project, there is a profound sense of acceptance radiating from Williams’s voice and production, a grace thoughtfully extended to herself that enables some of the most effective music of her career. “I have spent many years writing about breakups and matters of the heart, but with this collection of songs, I did some deep self-examination and shared more personal parts of myself,” says Williams. “End Of The World EP is a more intimate collection of songs about subjects I haven't yet touched on previously. In this EP, I write about growing up and apart from a close friend, self worth, self esteem, grief, mental health and even existentialism.”

Though the subject matter would suggest otherwise, the weight of grief does not weigh down the music of End Of The World. “Change” is a vindicated reckoning with her past, while “Growing Up” with Miki Ratsula exhibits a vibrance that belies the material at hand. Elsewhere, she is affirming (“I Am Enough”), brutally honest (“Uncomplicated”), and acoustically grateful (“Feels Like”), never losing her spirit on her travels of time, space, and self. Of all places, End Of The World feels like the best place to meet Dana Williams - just as she’s coming fully into the picture herself. 


Copy Link

Related Articles