Exclusive Premiere: Real Love on Parker Lane’s Vulnerable “3AM”

"3AM" still - Parker Lane

You’re all I want at 3AM

The saying goes, “Nothing good ever happens after 2 AM,” but there are a lot of sayings out there, and since when do you base your life choices off another person’s sayings? We tend to succumb to temptation and desire in the darkest hours, so it is easy to avoid potentially harmful decisions altogether with a blanket rejection of activity. Just go to bed. But it is in that early, early morning, when we are awake when we should be sleeping, that we are our truest selves, bereft of the shields we erect during the day to blend our crazy personalities in with the rest of the world. We can learn a lot about ourselves during the witching hour, if we are willing to keep an open mind. Who knows what you might find: Love, adventure, and excitement tend to surprise us when we least expect them.

Enter Parker Lane’s “3AM,” a raw love song bred out of nighttime encounters.

(her)
Predictable like the setting sun
Reaching out when your night is done
Feel like love can’t come from it
I want more from life than this
(him)
Some battles I know I can’t win
I won’t even try to pretend
It don’t matter what people say
Still coming through, even though it’s late
Watch: “3AM” – Parker Lane

"3AM" by Parker Lane

“3AM” by Parker Lane

Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering the music video for Parker Lane’s impassioned single “3AM,” an intimate his and hers love song off the duo’s debut album P.L.A.Y. (released 9/9/2016 via Beets & Produce). The collaboration of Printz Board and Lucy Graves, Parker Lane describe themselves as “a guy, a girl, and a guitar… seasoned with a trumpet and a piano.” Sprinkling bits of folk, indie, acoustic, country, and more together, Parker Lane’s sound is familiar, yet unique: Their essence lies quite fittingly in the balance of authentic words with uplifting, moving melodies that hit the listener hard and true.

“3AM” is as organic and natural as a song can get, with Board and Graves’ raw vocals taking turns and melting together with a lone acoustic guitar and tambourine. “There’s something special about keeping it simplistic: Black and White,” says the band. The duet begins with Lucy Graves, whose voice shines with hints of hurt and heartbreak. She expresses sorrow at the idea of her being someone’s late-night afterthought, noting how he’s always “reaching out when your night is done.” She rejects this disregard, sure that nothing can come of it: “I want more from life than this.”

Board’s verse follows immediately; his voice is raspy, but his words are full of conviction. He doesn’t bother to argue – he “won’t even try to pretend,” knowing that she is entitled to feel the way she feels. Nevertheless, he is propelled to come to her, despite what others might say or think of this move. His words certainly come off as one-track minded, but his intent feels genuine: She can think what she thinks; he knows how he feels and he’ll prove it to her.

(both)
Round and round, he said, she said,
Misunderstandings killin’ my head
No no no, no no no, it’s just us
No no no, no no no, our crazy love
We both know how this goes
(her) No I’m not gonna be your 3AM
(him) It’s not what you think, you’re my everything
(both) To hell with who and where we’ve been
You’re all I want at 3AM

There are two sides to every coin, and you can usually only see one side at a time. However, when you take a step back, you start to see both as clear as day. He goes out and does things, but always wants to end his night with her; she is his comfort, and when it’s time to sleep, he wants to be by her side. She wants more than that: How can she trust his words, when his actions speak so loud? The last thing of the day might as well be an afterthought; she wants substance, real quality time, and proper attention – to be seen in the daylight, as well as in the night.

"3AM" still - Parker Lane

“3AM” still – Parker Lane

They call it their “crazy love;” love is, indeed, crazy. It supersedes all other thoughts and feelings, taking over our minds and bodies when the moment calls. The denial, “No I’m not gonna be your 3AM,” doesn’t stand a chance against the admission, “You’re all I want at 3AM.” Love is a bit of a game, sometimes. The stakes are high and the odds are low, but if you should win, well… If you’ve ever seen true love, you know it’s worth the risk. In the words of Parker Lane, “Love isn’t simple, but it is very vulnerable and honest at times. We’d consider this a very real song.”

In keeping “3AM” so musically sparse, Parker Lane are able to capture natural, timeless emotions through simple harmonies and lyrical depth. Their voices resonate inside and out as both perspectives share their intimate thoughts with the world.

(him)
Predictable like the dark of night

Just because I’m wrong don’t make you right
If you only knew what was in my heart
You’d come right in, the door’s unlocked
(her)
The twisted part about this love
No matter what, I can’t get enough
Mentally, all black and blue
I can’t fight it, I still choose you
But at 3am, I still choose you

If “3AM” doesn’t immediately resonate, its music video will. The black and white visual reduces Printz Board and Lucy Graves to their outlines, stripping them of color and depth. Their heads, defined only by the black lines that indicate hair, eyes, nose, mouth, and so on, are like shells – empty vessels that we might put ourselves into. That might be you on the left, or that might be you on the right. The individual’s ability to self-identify with Board or Graves (or both) is intensified in this way, adding a relatable human element to the video that isn’t as readily available in the song alone.

"3AM" still - Parker Lane

still from the beginning of the “3AM” video

"3AM" still - Parker Lane

still from the end of the “3AM” video

Board and Graves’ outlines start far apart, occupying opposite sides of the frame. As the song progresses, their faces move closer and closer together, eventually “molding” together to create a single facial outline that is half of one, and half of the other. The message isn’t hard to grasp: Over the course of the simulated conversation, the two individuals realize the intense depth of their feelings for one another. They go from feeling far apart, to close and near.

And thus, their love grows stronger. For something so musically lightweight, “3AM” is heavy at heart. It unlocks both sides of a relationship, exposing flaws but also true and earnest emotions. Yes, he should make more time for her. Yes, she should worry less. What we learn matters most is what they feel for one another, after everything else is said and done: As long as their love is pure, the rest will fall into place. Parker Lane’s chorus proclamation “You’re all I want at 3AM” radiates with love – the warmth, trust, and understanding shared between two souls.

The dark of night may or may not be prime time for shenanigans, but don’t say nothing good ever happens after 2 AM: Don’t knock it ’til you try it. Who knows? You might fall in love.

— — — —

Connect with Parker Lane on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram
Discover more new music on Atwood’s Picks
cover photo: Parker Lane © 2016

:: Watch: “3AM” – Parker Lane ::


P.L.A.Y. – Parker Lane

P.L.A.Y. - Parker Lane

P.L.A.Y. – Parker Lane

Mitch is the Editor-in-Chief of Atwood Magazine and a 2014 graduate from Tufts University, where he pursued his passions of music and psychology. He currently works at Universal Music Group in New York City. In his off hours, Mitch may be found songwriting, wandering about one of New York's many neighborhoods, or writing an article on your next favorite artist for Atwood. Mitch's words of wisdom to fellow musicians and music lovers are thus: Keep your eyes open and never stop exploring. No matter where you go, what you do or who you are with, you can always learn something new and inspire something amazing. Say hi here: mitch[at]atwoodmagazine[dot]com