Premiere: Wilby’s Beautifully Vulnerable & Radiantly Raw “reach u” Reckons with Accountability and Acceptance

Wilby © Christina Coleman
Wilby © Christina Coleman
An urgent indie rock upheaval, Wilby’s radiant new single “reach u” aches with longing and raw passion as the artist reckons through the depths of disconnection.
Stream: “reach u” – Wilby




If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the past three years, it’s to cherish human connection: To appreciate those around us and hold them close. And yet, that desire to keep connected isn’t always reciprocated; everyone’s living their own lives – friends go off the grid, loved ones’ priorities change, and so on; in some instances, it’s the natural course of life, and in others, it’s a fluke – a busy spell at work or home that keeps them occupied and unavailable.

Of course, none of this takes away from the frustration we feel when the line goes silent or our calls go unanswered. Yearning is a visceral experience, and one that is perhaps best expressed in song. An urgent indie rock upheaval, Wilby’s radiant new single “reach u” aches with longing and raw passion as the artist reckons through the depths of disconnection.

reach u - Wilby
reach u – Wilby
It’s always so hard to reach you
I think I’ve worn out the ways that i could
All the moments I need you
I’m reciting your voicemail by heart
I’m always thinking about you
Always hoping you get what you want
Maybe you could come over
i’ll make you dinner and write it all off
but it’s never that simple
But it’s never too hard
to show me you’ll come through
Every once in a while

Atwood Magazine is proud to be premiering “reach u,” Wilby’s fourth song release of the year and the final single off her forthcoming sophomore EP Happiest Woman, our January 27, 2023. Already one of our artists to watch, Wilby is the musical moniker for Philadelphia-bred, Nashville-based singer/songwriter Maria Crawford (formerly known as the folk artist Mar), who debuted her first single in “Bad” in October 2020 and her debut EP, Translucent Beauty, in June 2021.

“A radiant and groovy outpouring of tender, catchy, and intimate indie pop, Translucent Beauty is an enchanting and instantly memorable experience,” Atwood Magazine wrote in premiering Wilby’s EP, going on to call it “a dynamic and sweetly soaring outpouring of feel-good sound and raw, vulnerable emotion.”

Wilby's Debut EP 'Translucent Beauty' Embraces Vulnerability & Catchy, Intimate Indie Pop

:: ARTIST TO WATCH ::



Wilby © Christina Coleman
Wilby © Christina Coleman
It’s gonna take getting used to
To follow thru with just calling you out
But then I guess I’m the sad one
If it’s something that I can allow,
For too long

This year’s release have followed through on all the promise and potential of Wilby’s initial introduction, with January’s wistful acoustic ballad “Favorite Cowboy” and this fall’s heavier, heartier tracks “i got what i asked for” and “kickball” showcasing Crawford’s talents as a storyteller, a vocalist, and much more.

Sonically, “reach u” is considerably brighter than its two grungy predecessors, leaning more into the indie and alt pop world with more glaze and bounce in the electric guitars and an extra spring in the track’s beat. Nevertheless, Wilby’s latest offering aches from the depths of a heavy heart. Grappling with the inherent pain of emotional and physical distance – and the feeling like she’s pulling more than her fair share in a relationship – “reach u” comes to its climax in a resounding, deep-diving, cathartic chorus:

’cause it’s never that simple
but it’s never too hard
to show me that you’ll come through
Every once in a while…
every once it a while
yeah, just once in a while

It’s never too hard to show me that you’ll come through…” Somehow, when we put our faith and reliance on others, a seemingly simple act of expression can quickly come to feel like an insurmountable task. “reach u” longs for an external resolve that never comes; instead, Wilby must make the change come from within, ultimately exploring her own expectations and confronting the reasons she needs that connection and communication in the first place.

“I wrote ‘reach u’ right after hanging up from calling a loved one and getting their voicemail for what seemed to be the 100th time in a row,” Wilby tells Atwood Magazine. “I felt frustrated and hurt, and the melody ‘it’s always so hard to reach you‘ just came out naturally. Verse 1 and 2 depicts this tendency to always give more in relationships than the other person.”

“Verse 3 then shifts more inward and highlights my own realization of the lack of boundaries I have for myself, re: ‘but then I guess I’m the sad one, if it’s something that I can allow for too long.‘ ‘reach u’ is about accountability, both for others and for myself. It’s about showing up for your people, but [it’s] also a reminder to not give yourself away. It’s about realizing someone isn’t capable of being there for you, and the closure you can get when you accept that and know what you deserve.”

Wilby © Christina Coleman
Wilby © Christina Coleman



Wilby © Christina Coleman
Wilby © Christina Coleman
Oh tried to reach you,
but
it’s just as well
I’m done calling you for help
Tried to reach you
but i
t’s just as well
I’m done calling you for help
Cause it’s just as well
And time does tell
That it’s never too simple
But it’s never too hard
To show me that you’ll come through
Every once in a while

‘reach u’ is about accountability, both for others and for myself. It’s about showing up for your people, but [it’s] also a reminder to not give yourself away.

For all intents and purposes, “reach u” is a sweetly stunning inner reckoning.

Wilby unveils herself and taps into considerable depths on ultimately feels like a tight, yet expansive 145-second therapy session. The emotions are tense while the music flows freely, creating a welcoming environment where we, too, can explore our own expectations, needs, and desires alongside what we get and what we deserve. Once again embracing vulnerability, Wilby reminds us that there is profound strength in honesty and beauty in being the rawest, realest versions of ourselves.

Wilby’s sophomore EP Happiest Woman is out January 27th, 2023. Stream “reach u” exclusively on Atwood Magazine, and pre-save the song on your preferred DSPs via the link below!

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:: stream/purchase reach u here ::
Stream: “reach u” – Wilby



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reach u - Wilby

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📸 © Christina Coleman
art © Destiny Keller

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